PSA: Evans and Ford carry the Kent flag

May 9, 2013 - 4:25am
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James Evans in action. Picture by KIM ROBERTS

James Evans in action. Picture by KIM ROBERTS

PSA World Tour Challenger 10 SE Leisure Kent Open

At The Mote Squash Club, Maidstone, Kent, England
Qualifying Finals:
Reuben Phillips (ENG) walkover v Antoine Petrucci (FRA) withdrew due to injury
(L) James Evans (ENG) bt Jonathan Geekie (SCO) 11-8, 15-13, 11-8 (41 mins)
James Earles (ENG) bt Anthony Brindle (GIB) 11-1, 11-4, 11-4 (24 mins)
(L) Ben Ford (ENG) bt (L) Charlie Johnson (ENG) 8-11, 9-11, 11-3, 11-5, 11-2 (58 mins)
Locals Ben Ford and James Evans won through to the main draw of the SE Leisure Kent Open, a PSA Challenger 10 tournament at The Mote Squash Club in Maidstone, England
Kent veteran Ford, 37, fought back from two games down to beat Herts youngster Charlie Johnson.
Teenager Evans, for the second day running, put his homework to one side as he left school to beat a full-time professional in straight games at his home club.
After beating Robbie Downer on Tuesday, he overcame a second Portsmouth-based player in Jonathan Geekie.
Evans looked dominant in the first and third games but had to work hard to fight back from 9-6 down in the second to clinch an abrasive tiebreak 15-13.
His victory came after he had been appointed Head Boy at Maidstone’s Invicta Grammar School earlier in the day.
His reward is a difficult first round tie against the experienced Chris Ryder, who has won this tournament twice and has never lost at The Mote.
Ford, who played alongside Evans in the Kent team at the weekend in the English inter-counties championship, rolled back the years as he overcame Johnson. Both players had won through from a three-match pre-qualifying programme on Monday, but it was Ford who finished the stronger.
His artistry with the racket frequently left Johnson flat-footed and he faces an equally talented shot-maker in the main draw with a first round clash with 32-year-old No.2 seed Jonathan Kemp, who arrives in Kent fresh from winning his own tournament in Ipswich at the weekend.
Top seed Adrian Waller meets another talented Londoner, Reuben Phillips, who was awarded a walkover yesterday after his French opponent, Antoine Petrucci, withdrew through injury.
The top qualifying seed, Yorkshire’s James Earles, swept past Gibraltar’s Anthony Brindle in just 24 minutes and meets Pakistan’s Adil Maqbool in the first round.
First Round:
1 Adrian Waller (ENG) v (Q) Reuben Phillips (ENG)
Chris Ryder (ENG) v (Q) James Evans (ENG)
Adil Maqbool (PAK) bt (Q) James Earles (ENG)
4 Henrik Mustonen (FIN) v Joel Hinds (ENG)
3 Joe Lee (ENG) v Michael Harris (ENG)
Yann Perrin (FRA) v Carlos Cornes Ribada (ESP)
Declan James (ENG) v Steven London (ENG)
2 Jonathan Kemp (ENG) v (Q) Ben Ford (ENG)
Tournament website:
The Kent Open is sponsored by SE Leisure, Craft Insure, Shepherd Neame, The Mote Squash Club, Harrow Sports and CM Stringers.