2020 Round TWO REPORTS

R2: Nele nervous, Rachael a bit off…

[14] Nele Gilis (BEL) 3-0 Rachael Grinham (AUS)  11-7, 11-5, 11-4 (25m)

Not a good day at the office for one of the true Legends of the game. Nele played excellent accurate squash, finding her target at the back corners beautifully in particular with a few stunning lobs, and got some pretty sharp shots at the front, but the Australian just kept making uncharacteristic errors.

Still, Nele never relaxed, and even up 2/2 up, at 3/3 in the third she went for a loud COME ON! proof of the respect she had for the unorthodox game of Miss Rachael Grinham….

Not an off day really, just the ball was so heavy!!! Court is very cold, not many people watching, so it’s very dead, and Nele can really hit a good shot.

And when I managed to get a good rally going, creating openings finally, I would hit the tin. And not the top of the tin, I mean, really middle of it! I kept telling myself that I had to lift the ball more, but I just couldn’t change my way to play. Very frustrating.

It’s not like I had any doubt of the final outcome, but I would have liked to stay a bit longer in the rallies, and not hit the floor for no reason!

But then again, she was playing very well, and made it hard for me…


The two times I beat her was on a warm and bouncy court. But on those cold conditions, I know she can take a shot from anywhere. Anything loose anywhere near the middle, and she’ll roll it!

I just tried to prepare as I do for every match. Focus on my own game and try to tell myself to just fight for every single point. I was actually really nervous coming into this match because I know how a good a player Rachael is and if she’s on then she could blow me away. I struggled to find my rhythm with her and her tricky shots, so I’m so happy to be through in three.