Saurav Ghosal (Ind) 3-1 Auguste Dussourd (Fra) 6-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-6 (56m)
The joys of being over 35 (he is 36) for the PSA President Saurav Ghosal, one of the nicest/fairest players around. The Indian today was a bit slow off the blocks, allowing the talented 27 years old Frenchman to push him all over the four corners, 11/6 in 10m for Auguste
But from the 2nd onwards, Saurav’s body seems to be in full shape and it was a joy to see him playing his clever squash. Both players were dominating for a few points, but it was still close score in the middle of the 2nd, 5/5, 6/6, 7/7, Saurav zooming to 11/7 in 13m.
A bit of contention at the business end of the 3rd, from 4/4, 4/6 down, Saurav scored 4 points in a row, 8/6. The Frenchman equalised 8/8 and thinks he won the rally, but the ref, unsure of the shot, gives a let, which seemed to affect Auguste, reminiscence of another match he played in Canary Wharf, apparently. A stroke will follow, 10/8, 11/8 in 13m again.
A very frustrated Frenchman kicked his racket Zidane style, and got penalised as he went off court by a conduct stroke – meaning the Indian was up 1/0 as they started the following game. And I didn’t hear what Auguste said to the ref, but I don’t think it was to compliment him on his decisions….
With the momentum, Saurav goes up 4/1 in the 4th, but a good response from Auguste, 4/4. 6/6. Saurav in mental control I felt, a couple of errors from the French at 9/6, and it’s 11/6 in 12m.
As I mentioned in my previous report, Squash is such a mental game….
🗣 "For me, it's just trying to focus on what I need to do and what I want to do on the squash court and try and execute and implement that as best I can,"
India's @SauravGhosal looks ahead to his RD2 match with the in-form Joel Makin after a win on day one ➡️#OptasiaChamps pic.twitter.com/iRHMSoL6nV
— PSA World Tour (@PSAWorldTour) March 21, 2023
“I think a lot of what I am as a professional squash player is because I went to Malcolm Willstrop when I was 18 years old and he taught me so much. Going to David Palmer was putting the icing and the cherry on the cake that was made by Malcolm.
“That’s what David has done since I started going to him in 2018, but I still went to Malcolm and I started going to James Willstrop this year which is a continuation of what Malcolm was doing.
“Both David and James are former World No.1s, they’ve both achieved so much in the game, they know what it takes to get to the top, so trying to add different elements from David and James and trying to absorb as much as I can from them.”