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Paul Coll reaches last eight at British Open

New Zealand's Paul Coll is into the quarterfinals of the British Open
Paul Coll plays a backhand up close to the wall at the British Open as he moves into the quarterfinals of the tournament. PHOTO: PSA WORLD TOUR

West Coast squash player Paul Coll kept his determination after a difficult fight in the first game to work his way into the quarterfinals of the British Open.


Coll held off the attacking threats of Miguel Rodriguez and triumph in a highly entertaining three-game clash at The Rep Theatre. 


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From the start of the match the 2018 British Open champion Rodriguez took the match to Coll, unsettling the movement patterns of the New Zealander with some unpredictable shot-making to all areas of the court. 


The pair moved to a first-game tie-break, but it was the consistent lines and lengths of Coll that proved pivotal in these moments, with the two-time winner of the event taking the opening game 12-10. 


The second game followed in a similar pattern, with the Colombian firing in a number of high-class winners, but two-time British Open winner Coll remaining composed amid the barrage of attacks. The 32-year-old got his nose ahead early and never let Rodriguez draw parity, doubling his advantage in the match. 


The early efforts from Rodriguez, 38,  began to show early in the third, with Coll capitalising on a couple of untidy errors to breeze into an 8-1 lead. From there, the tournament No.2 seed progressed to match ball, sealing victory by a 12-10, 11-5, 11-2 scoreline after 39 minutes of squash. 


After the match, Coll was pleased with his victory.


“I love to watch Miguel play squash, not so much playing him. He’s always basically not where I expect him to be, he loves those quick exchanges, but I basically just had to keep my accuracy.


He plays his brand of squash, and it’s sometimes quite hard to play because you lose where he is and he’s doing a 360 or something. I just had to keep my focus, especially in the first, and I think I did that. 


“Overall, I’m very happy with my performance, getting through 3-0 against Miguel, he’s a great player. I was actually very happy with my squash, where I was putting the ball, and the opportunities that I was creating. I thought I could have put the ball away a little bit better, because I had a tonne of opportunities, but Miguel always puts doubt in your mind about where he is.” 


Coll will take on Malaysian 15th seed Eain Yow Ng for a place in the semifinals.

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