Nick Matthew To Face James Willstrop In AJ Bell British Squash Grand Prix Showdown

Nick Matthew To Face James Willstrop In AJ Bell British Squash Grand Prix Showdown
Three time World Squash Champion & reigning AJ Bell British Squash Grand Prix title holder Nick Matthew, represented by intermationalSPORTgroup, produced a convincing display to beat Chris Simpson 3-0 in the first round of the 2015 AJ Bell British Squash Grand Prix, which got underway at Manchester’s National Squash Centre yesterday to move into the quarter-finals to face long-term adversary James Willstrop.
The tournament curtain-raiser didn't disappoint, with both players producing an exceptional standard of squash, entertaining a packed crowd in Manchester as Matthew allayed all fears that he would be diminished after suffering a knee injury during the summer.
After taking the first game 11-4, No.2 seed Matthew further asserted his dominance in the second, winning 11-7 before taking the final game 11-6, to complete a comfortable first round win.
“I came away with a lot of positives there,” said Matthew.
“I didn’t expect that at all. I expected to be having to dig in, hang in, scrap and use a lot of experience and I was going into that match thinking what I was better at than my opponent and how I could use that to win and the only thing I could think of today was that I was more experienced. I was expecting to draw on a lot of that but only really had to in that last game.
“I'm over the moon, I've had a bit of an interrupted summer but it came together on the day. I'm enjoying being healthy then tomorrow it moves on quickly so I've not got much time to relax.”
Matthew's win sets up a mouth-watering quarter-final clash with long-term rival and fellow Yorkshireman James Willstrop after ‘The Marksman' made it past Laurens Jan Anjema in his first round match.
The former World No.1 maintained his 100% head-to-head record against his Dutch opponent to claim a confident 3-1 victory.
“It’s good to have a blow out so the body gets moving,” said Willstrop.
“It’s all positive and I'm happy to be playing in a quarter final against a world class operator in the form of Nick [Matthew] and it's a big rivalry. You never know whats going to happen.”
The AJ Bell British Squash Grand Prix – Manchester 2015, promoted by internationalSPORTgroup, are being held at the National Squash Centre in Manchester, England from the 11th - 14th September.
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