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Squash - 16. August 2011.

Age is just a number for Latasha in the Hamptons

Latasha Khan won the 7th WISPA title of her career this week at the Tour 8 Hamptons Open in Southampton, New York.


The American veteran showed that at 38 years old, she still has what it takes to see off the up and coming stars of the future.


The first round saw all the top eight seeds move through to the quarter finals, although for some it was far from easy. Khan, the top seed, eased past young American Sabrina Sobhy, sister of US no.1 Amanda. Second seed Joshna Chinappa also progressed in straight games over another American, Elpinki Clement. There were further straight game victories for German number one Sina Wall, Canada's Samantha Cornett and South American number one Thaisa Serafini.

The Mexican duo of Nayelly Hernandez and Ivonne Diaz were tested before making it through. Hernandez held off a late challenge from Indian qualifier Aparajitha Balamurukan and Diaz edged past compatriot Imelda Salazar Martinez.

The final seed to make it through was Canada's Stephanie Edmison. Edmison looked on her way out, down two games to one, but she fought back and finally won in the fifth game tie break against last year's finalist and former top 25 player Suzie Pierrepont.


The quarter finals brought further success for the top four seeds as they all progressed to the semis. Khan ended Serafini's challenge whilst Chinappa and Wall disposed of the Mexican pair, Hernandez and Diaz, all in straight games. The last quarter final saw an all Canadian battle between Cornett and Edmison. Cornett moved into a two game lead and looked to be moving into the semi final, but Edmison fought back and pushed the match into a decider. It was Cornett who came out stronger in the fifth game and took it 11-8 to progress.


The first semi final saw Khan take on Wall. Khan's experience was just too much for Wall she eased through to the final without being tested too much by the German. The second semi final ended in retirement with the match poised at two games all. Chinappa had built up a two game advantage before Cornett stormed back. In the fourth it appeared that Chinappa had a self inflicted injury and she was unable to continue in the fifth.


The final saw a match up between two players separated in age by 18 years! They had met once before back in 2010 at the Sun and Surf with Khan winning in four games. Khan wasn't to be denied again and she held off the threat from the young Canadian in three games. Cornett had her chances in the second game, pushing it to a tie break but she couldn't find a way past Khan precise shot making.


Khan at 38 becomes the second oldest player to ever win a tour title, only being eclipsed by England legend Suzanne Horner who was 40 when she won the Swiss Open back in 2003.


For Cornett it was an incredible fifth final of the year and likely place in the world's top 50 in next month's rankings.


Final:


[1] Latasha Khan (USA) bt [4] Samantha Cornett (CAN) 11/5 12/10 11/7


Semi Finals:


[1] Latasha Khan (USA) bt [3] Sina Wall (GER) 11/4 11/5 11/5

[4] Samantha Cornett (CAN) bt [2] Joshna Chinappa (IND) 5/11 9/11 11/9 11/2 rtd


Quarter Finals:


[1] Latasha Khan (USA) bt [5] Thaisa Serafini (BRA) 11/8 11/6 11/5

[3] Sina Wall (GER) bt [6] Ivonne Diaz (MEX) 11/5 11/9 11/4

[4] Samatha Cornett (CAN) bt [8] Stephanie Edmison (CAN) 11/7 11/8 8/11 6/11 11/8

[2] Joshna Chinappa (IND) bt [7] Nayelly Hernandez (MEX) 11/5 11/8 11/8


1st Round:


[1] Latasha Khan (USA) bt [Q] Sabrina Sobhy (USA) 11/7 11/4 11/4

[5] Thaisa Serafini (BRA) bt [Q] Julianne Chu (USA) 11/2 11/6 11/9

[3] Sina Wall (GER) bt Leonie Holt (ENG) 11/9 11/9 11/8

[6] Ivonne Diaz (MEX) bt Imelda Salazar Martinez (MEX) 7/11 11/6 11/7 12/14 11/8

[8] Stephanie Edmison (CAN) bt Suzie Pierrepont (ENG) 7/11 11/9 5/11 12/10 13/11

[4] Samantha Cornett (CAN) bt [Q] Anaka Alankamony (IND) 11/5 13/11 11/9

[7] Nayelly Hernandez (MEX) bt [Q] Aparajitha Balamurukan (IND) 11/7 11/5 10/12 11/8

[2] Joshna Chinappa (IND) bt Elpiniki Clement (USA) 11/1 11/5 11/8

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