Growthpoint S A National Squash Championships

Wanderers Squash Club

Western Province’s Gary Wheadon and Northerns player Milnay Louw, lifted the prestigious GrowthPoint S A National Squash titles when the finals were played on the all glass court at the Wanderers Squash Club in Johannesburg at the weekend.

Louw, who successfully defended the title she won in 2016, was in dominant form throughout the week and did not drop a game on her way to the final. Ranked 64 in the world, top seeded Alexandra Fuller, also of Cape Town, similarly coasted through to the finals, not dropping  game but then had no answers to Louw’s attacking play. Louw ran out a fairly easy 11-9 11-7 11-1 winner.

In the absence of  the World’s number 20 player and 8 time winner of the title, Steve Coppinger, the men’s field was an open, unpredictable field.

Top seed, Clinton Leeuw, now based in the USA needed 5 games to defeat 5/8 seed Christo Potgieter in the quarterfinals but then fell victim to Wheadon in a tight 4 games in the semi-final. In the bottom half second seed, Thoboki Mohohlo, a student at Trinity College in the USA, accounted for Central Gautenger, Devon Hendrikse in 4 games to set up the semi-final clash with Durbach, winner of the World Masters 40-44 section in 2016.

Durbach showed scant respect for his younger opponent, racing through the first 2 games 11-4 11-1. Mohohlo, who had been selected for the National Men’s team to play in the 2015 World Men’s Team championship which was eventually cancelled, found some form to pocket the third game 11-4 but thereafter Durbach dominated play winning the fourth game 11-5 and take a place in his seventh final.

Winner in 1999, 2003 and 2009 and victor over Wheadon in the recent Western Province Open final, Durbach was favourite to win his 4th title.

But it was a determined Wheadon who applied the pressure against a tiring Durbach and emerged 11-7 11-9 11-8 winner – only the second player who represents Kwazulu Natal at Jarvis, the annual interprovincial championships to appear in the finals – the other being Adrian Hansen.

Click here for photos of the championships.


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