Match report by Jon Sharpe, Men’s Squash Captain
The 2023 Devon County Championships proved to be one of the most fun and competitive I can remember. Most matches seemed to go the distance. It’s fair to say that players definitely got their value for money. Along with the spectators!
There were 5 grades in the men’s, with the A Grade being the premier class, containing professional/ex professional and aspiring professional players, all the way through to the E Grade which was played at an equally furious pace with enthusiastic Devon League players from around the county.
There were 2 grades for the women’s event, with some excellent matchups throughout. Much like the men’s events, it was difficult to guess which way the matches were going to go, with most matches going the full distance!
Out of the 7 events, Exeter Golf & Country Club produced 6 finalists; Dom Cromwell, Tim Hodges, Pete Clutton-Brock, Yasmin Brown, Ioan Sharpe and Mike Harris. The Men’s E Grade final contested by Dom and Tim was an entertaining 3-2 win for Tim, but Dom will be looking for revenge during the box leagues! Yasmin Brown, one of our juniors do brilliantly to reach the final but ultimately came up short agains Exeter Uni’s Natalie Fay in the women’s B Grade final. Pete Clutton-Brock, causing some big upsets to reach the final came up against the in form Curtis Corby but played some super squash all weekend.
In the final if the Men’s A Grade, it was an all Exeter Golf & Country Club affair contested by Head Coach and former professional player, Mike Harris and his student, Ioan Sharpe, 17 year old Boys U19 County and Welsh National No1. Mike played some typically composed squash to reach the final whilst ioan had an 80 minutes 3-2 upset win against number 2 seed, James Snell, to reach his first senior final. Mike was the worthy winner, playing some sublime squash whilst ioan played as hard as his fatigued legs would allow. Mike definitely still the top dog, but will the apprentice become the master next year?
All in all, a fantastic tournament. It will take a lot to top this one!
E Grade – Timothy Hodges bt Dom Cromwell 3/2
D Grade – Rich Turner bt Max Taylor 3/2
C Grade – Charlie Ferraro bt Lee Chapman 3/0
B Grade – Curtis Corby bt Pete Clutton-Brock 3/0
Ladies B Grade – Natalie Fay bt Yasmin Brown 3/0
Ladies A Grade – Carina Louiza Miles bt Emma Coughlan 3/2
A Grade – Mike Harris bt loan Sharpe 3/0