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Squash - 21. April 2008.

Lengthorn-Massaro wins in Dublin


Women's semi-finals:

[3] Laura Lengthorn-Massaro (ENG) bt [1] Vicky Botwright (ENG) 9-7, 9-3, 9-3 (39m)

[2] Alison Waters (ENG) bt [4] Madeline Perry (IRL) 9-6, 9-4, 6-9, 9-6
(55m)

Final:

[3] Laura Lengthorn-Massaro (ENG) bt [2] Alison Waters (ENG) 9-1, 0-9, 9-6, 2-9, 10-8 (67m)

Two thrilling five-game finals brought the 2008 Cannon Kirk Homes Irish Open Squash Championships to a resounding climax at the Fitzwilliam Club in Dublin - with Scottish favourite John White winning the men's $25,000 PSA Tour title and England's third seed Laura Lengthorn-Massaro claiming the $25,300 women's WISPA World Tour crown to make it a British double for the second year in a row.


Equally close was the all-English women's final between Lengthorn-Massaro and No2 seed Alison Waters - the pair's first meeting since contesting the British National Championship final, won by Waters, in February.

Underdog Lengthorn-Massaro had the edge in the first game, taking full advantage of a series of unforced errors by Waters to win for the loss of just a single point. Londoner Waters replied by wrapping up the second in a whitewash in just eight minutes.

The third game proved a marathon, with service changing hands frequently before Laura reclaimed the lead. Waters was on top in the fourth, and drew level.

In the decider, Waters pulled away to a 7-4 lead but Massaro clawed her way back into the match to put her in touch when Waters earned won her first match ball. Dogged resistance from Massaro found her regaining serve, evening the scores and then going ahead after a saving a second Waters' match ball.

With the match finely-balanced, Massaro finally then converted her third match ball to win 9-1, 0-9, 9-6, 2-9, 10-8 in 67 minutes.

"This was my third time playing Alison this year, so I'm glad at last to have won!" said a delighted Lengthorn-Massaro after celebrating the fourth WISPA title of her career.

It was the new champion's second upset in the event, after beating Lancashire and England team-mate Vicky Botwright, the top seed, in the semi-finals. The other women's semi also saw the end of local star Madeline Perry's bid to win the crown for a fourth successive year.

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