2021 Platinum Reports REPORTS

R2: Joelle through in Three

R2: [7] Joelle King (Nzl) 3-0 Danielle Letourneau (Can) 11-7, 11-9, 11-4 (37m)

It took a little while for the Canadian to get used to the superb Kiwi game today. Down 2/7 and 5/9, Danielle got in the game at the end of the opener, starting to find answers to the questions Joelle was asking, bowing 11/7 in 10m

The second saw a pretty bad start from the Cairo resident, three errors in a row, pretty uncharacteristic to my knowledge but soon we were back level, 4/4, 6/6, 7/7, 8/8.

At that point, Danielle getting into trouble for being too nice! She hits Joelle with her racquet, Joelle is going for the deep right corner can’t get the ball out but by the time she hits the ball, the Canadian had apologise with a cute “Sorry”! No let is given, a bit of chat between the ref, the players, Danielle immediately saying that she did say “sorry”, but no change from the video ref decision.

Not overhappy with that state of affairs, Joelle is now truly up for it, taking the next rally very quickly and looking at Lee Beachill and Tim Garner who are on the side watching the proceedings. Still, the Kiwi finally gets to take the 15m game, 11/9 from 9/9, crucial game if any.

From 3/3 in the 3rd, Danielle is just not able to contain the energy and accuracy coming from the New Zealander’s racquet, and it’s 11/4 in 9 minutes, three tired errors to finish the match from Danielle…

Danielle :

Joelle is very strong in the middle. I realised that when I was able to make the rallies physical, it was working in my favour, that I had to play smart. But if I was playing one wrong shot, I was in trouble.

In the first game, I wanted to attack but I went for shots without settling down, and in the second, I was playing better, until that awkward moment at 8/8 where there was some confusion with me saying sorry for hitting her during the rally. It sort of broke the momentum away…

Joelle:  “It was far from easy.

“Danielle has made a big move coming to Cairo for her squash career. She’s been putting in some hard work and I knew it was going to be tough. I had to be on my toes and that second one could have gone either way.

“We were just going through the rule book I think [when King got hit during the second game]. It was fine, there was a little bit of controversy but we both got on with it and finished the game. I don’t think that changed anything, it was a tough second game and to come out and go 2-0 up was the main thing.

“Every match you’ve got to be on your toes and at your best. Our rankings didn’t tell the story of it being a close match, but it was a lot closer than people would probably think by a rankings standard. It only gets tougher from here, so every day you’ve got to be at your best and try and put the best out there.”