Defending champion Steve Coppinger and second seed Milnay Louw walked off with the trophies in the finals of the SA National Squash Championships at Wanderers Squash Club on Friday evening.
It took Coppinger 50 minutes to subdue some spirited play from second seeded Thoboki Mohohlo. The first game, lasting only 11 minutes, saw both players testing the waters. Points were level until 6-all with Coppinger then turning up the pressure and rattling off five consecutive points to take the game 11-6.
The talented Mohohlo took the initiative in the second game leading 9-4 before Coppinger turned up the pressure and levelled at 9-all. Mohohlo eventually clinched the game on his second game ball 12-10.
The next two games were one way traffic with Coppinger making use of accurate adept placings which had Mohohlo scurrying around the court to little avail, notching four points in the third game and three in the second.
Final score 11-6 10-12 11-4 11-3 to Coppinger, who represented Team South Africa at the 2009 World Games in Taiwan.
In the women’s final, Louw, who has been in dominant form all week, allowed the top seed, Siyoli Waters, no latitude. Forcing the pace from the first rally Louw put Waters under pressure which resulted in a string of unforced errors.
The second game had Louw run up a 6-3 lead before Waters found a better length and pace and fought back to trail 5-6,
Hard fought rallies followed but again Waters made unforced errors and it was Louw who won the game 12-10.
Louw’s accurate length and pace forced Waters into more errors as Louw pocketed the next five points to take her first national title 11-4 12-10 11-6 on her first match point.
Picture of Louw and Coppinger with Steve Doeg, Squash South Africa President, courtesy of Jeff Shulman