Matthew set to lock horns with Simpson

Share this article
Have your say

TOP seed Nick Matthew raced into the quarter finals of the British National Squash Championships after beating Adam Murrills 11-4, 11-4, 11-0 yesterday.

Sheffield-born Matthew, the double gold-winning Commonwealth medallist and World No 1, powered past Murrills, making his debut at the event, and now faces Chris Simpson in the last eight tonight.

The 30-year-old, who became England’s first ever world champion two months ago, defeated Chelmsford’s Neil Hitchens in the first round 12-10, 11-4, 11-4.

Matthew, who regularly trains at the National Squash Centre in Manchester, where the event is being staged, with his England team mates, is bidding to win a record-equalling fourth British national title.

Twelve months ago, Matthew edged out close rival James Willstrop in the final to keep the title in Yorkshire hands for the sixth year in a row.

However, it is a Lancastrian who boasts the greatest number of men’s titles in the 36-year history of the country’s premier domestic event: Blackpool-born Phil Kenyon claimed the trophy for a record fourth time in Bristol in 1985, when he beat then rival Gawain Briars for the third time in the final.

Matthew is expected to meet Willstrop, a two-time champion and ranked four in the world, in the nationals final.

Leeds player Willstrop booked his place in the second round by comprehensively overcoming Charles Sharpes 11-6, 11-6, 11-5.