EP women beat Joburg at interprovincial tournament

EP No 1 Hayley Ward led her team to victory against Joburg Squash A in their first match of the Growthpoint Interprovincal squash tournament in Cape Town on Tuesday
SEASONED PRO: EP No 1 Hayley Ward led her team to victory against Joburg Squash A in their first match of the Growthpoint Interprovincal squash tournament in Cape Town on Tuesday
Image: Carl Fourie Photography

The Eastern Province women’s team made a near-perfect start to the Growthpoint Interprovincial squash tournament when they defeated Joburg Squash A 17-3 in Cape Town on Tuesday.

After a bye on the opening day, the EP women, with the impressive Hayley Ward at the helm, launched their challenge for the title in a confident manner.

Ward, who recently won her first overseas professional title in the Brussels Open, put the finishing touches to their win when she outduelled Teagan Russell, a player with whom she has had some close matches in the past.

The only joy for Joburg Squash came from Gill van Vlaanderen, who defeated EP’s Anlen Murray 3-0.

Jacqui Ryder gave EP a winning start at No 3 with a solid 3-1 result against Tayla Dunn, and Bianca Keeley (No 5) and Kacey-Leigh Dodd (No 2) ensured the win even before Ward took to the court with impressive 3-0 results.

The EP A men’s team, competing in the B section, continued their run of success with a solid showing against Northerns B, running out 20-4 winners.

This was the second maximum haul of points this week and places them in prime position to contest the top four playoffs.

Despite some tight contests, Jason le Roux’s side showed steadiness when it counted, sparked by Sips Mpini’s 3-1 win at No 3.

Though dropping the third game, Mpini came through strongly in the fourth and he was followed by Thomas Southway with a 3-0 win over Braam Coetzee.

EP No 5 Michael Donaldson had the toughest match of the tie, trailing 2-1 against Wesley Daniels before demonstrating his fighting qualities by winning the last two games 11-6 and 11-9.

The EP B side suffered a setback when they went down in a well-contested encounter against Midlands B, losing the tie 16-8.

Despite sterling efforts by Rian Raubenheimer and Lubabalo Mtotoyi, who both lost 3-1, EP could win only two of the five matches.

It was again left to their top two players, Ethan Richardson and Liam Ford, who both pulled off 3-1 victories, to restore some respectability to the final tally, leaving EP B two points behind Midlands B going into the last match of the round-robin.

EP are up against log leaders Northerns C, while Midlands will fancy their chances against the winless Joburg Squash C.

The leading two sides will advance to the top-four playoffs on Thursday. 

HeraldLIVE


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