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Thomas makes final of Squash Premier League

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Elijah Thomas stole the show in the semifinals of week two of the Squash Premier League in Auckland with an intense four game victory over the previous tournaments winner, Temwa Chileshe.

The 17-year-old Thomas from the Eden Epsom Club who has a world ranking of 257 in the world put in a solid performance sticking to a game plan against Chileshe who is two years his senior, but 120 places lower on the world rankings.

Thomas raced out to an 11-7 first game win with some well executed shots before Chileshe battled back to gain the second. There was no real dominance by either player, however Thomas was fired up throughout and piled on the pressure to take the third and fourth games 11-7, 11-8 for the win in a total time of 42 minutes.

"I was pleased I’d never beaten Tem before. He’s obviously a strong player who makes you fight for every point. I like playing down my backhand it’s a good shot for me, he’s so good on his forehand, so it was keep it away from there," said Thomas who now faces Joel Arscott in the final. "He’s definitely a strong player as well, it will be a battle."

Arscott, 20 with a world ranking of 235 was efficient against Leo Fatialofa who had plenty of flair but not the control when required.

The top ranked player was able to set up the points well against the shot making of Fatialofa and eventually compile a win in straight games 11-9, 11-5, 11-7.

In earlier matches New Zealand national junior champ, Glenn Templeton beat 15-year-old Mason Smales 11-8, 11-6, 11-8 in 20 minutes. Smales showing improvement on his previous match and great ability to hold the ball late on his racquet.

Remuera club player Michael Shelton-Agar staged a comprehensive comeback against 17-year-old Jack Conder to win in five games after dropping the first two sets. The energy appeared to leave Conder, while Shelton-Agar looked sharp in the final three games of the 38 minute contest.

The final and playoffs of the Unsquashable Premier League continue from 3pm Sunday 24 May at the SquashXL Club in Auckland with live vision on PSA YouTube channel.

Results:

Glenn Templeton bt Mason Smales 11-8, 11-6, 11-8,

Michael Shelton-Agar bt Jack Conder 9-11, 10-13, 11-1, 11-6, 11-5.

Semifinals:

Joel Arscott bt Leo Fatialofa 11-9, 11-5, 11-7,

Elijah Thomas bt Temwa Chileshe 11-7, 9-11, 11-7, 11-8.

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