New Zealand’s Paul Coll has fallen in the quarter-finals of the US$150,00 El Gouna World Squash Series International in Egypt, beaten in four games by new world No.1 Gregory Gaultier of France.
Gaultier, who is targeting a fourth PSA World Tour title in a row dominated the early stages of the first game building a 7-0 lead in the opener. The 34-year-old also had it all his way at the start of the second game until Coll from Greymouth began to find his range in the third, holding and dropping well to take the match to a tie-break.
The two then went toe-to-toe again in the fourth, but Gaultier’s superior accuracy proved to be the difference as the closed out the match 11-6, 11-6, 11-13, 11-6 in 72 minutes.
“I have a lot of time for Paul. He is one of the players that have improved the most. He managed to break James and other players in the top 10,” said Gaultier who also took time out to praise Coll’s rise in the world rankings, which has taken the 24-year-old from world No.37 recently to a place inside the world’s top 20.
“He came twice to train with me in Prague, he is such a hard worker, he loves training and he is such a disciplined player. He is also a truly good and nice guy. He knows he will come back to my home, he is always ready to train and work with me. He is truly one of the future, because he is somebody that works and works. I have a lot of respect for him."
“He is young at 24, he will add a few more racquet skills with time and he’ll get experience. It’s all about a learning process, he doesn’t count the hours spent to train. I believe he is going to make it big time.”
Coll will now travel to Houston for a smaller PSA tournament in a week’s time.
The El Gouna Championships and the Women's World Championships will be on SquashTV from the 7-14 April. To rewatch Paul's Quarter Final or any of our Kiwi players past matches sign up to Squash TV here using the promo code NZ50 to receive 50% off your first 3 months.
Well done to all our Kiwis who competed in Egypt!