Shomari Wiltshire, Nicolette Fernandes crowned National Senior Squash champions
The Guyana Squash Association wrapped up its Guinness Senior National Championship at the weekend with Nicolette Fernandes crowned Women’s champion on Saturday, and 18-year-old Shomari Wilshire crowned Men’s champion on Sunday.
Only a handful of Juniors have won the Senior National title over the years and in Wiltshire’s last year in the Juniors he can now add that feather to his cap.
After two weeks of exciting squash at the Georgetown Club in which a Men’s qualifier was held, the top Male and Female players reached their finals matches and performed to an excited crowd.
Cruising through the Women’s matches, Fernandes didn’t drop a single game. Runner-up Ashley Khalil bested Larissa Wilshire and Taylor Fernandes in four-setters to reach the final, but was no match for the still outstanding Fernandes, who dominated for an 11-3, 11-2, 11-5 victory.
Nicolette also competed in the Men’s division (placing fifth), losing only one match in the third round to eventual winner Wiltshire, and proving that even in retirement she is a force to be reckoned with. In the bid for third place, recently returned Taylor Fernandes met Gabby Fraser for a heated battle.
After taking the first game with a good 11-7 margin, Taylor Fernandes had to dig deep to keep Fraser at bay in the second and third games, both going to 10-all. Taylor Fernandes’ calm form held to secure her a 3-0 win over Fraser.
In the final match of the Men’s division, Jason Ray Khalil took a two-game lead over Shomari Wiltshire with unparalleled retrieval and rapid pace, managing to get the ball past Wiltshire with his signature low, hard cross courts.
The men battled point for point in some gruelling rallies and although the games were close, only two points separated the finalists. Wiltshire came back with steady determination and took the next two to even up and head into the deciding fifth game.
Wiltshire had kept a reserve in his tank and stormed away in the final game displaying his solid tactical expertise to dominate and secure his championship win- an impressive comeback – for a 11-3 final game finish.
Other exciting matches on finals day came from Alex Arjoon and Daniel Ince when Ince, two games down and with Arjoon on match ball, fought to take the third game 15-13. Arjoon buckled down in the fourth however, and ran with a streak to win third place with a 3-1 game victory.
Nicholas Verwey met Nicolette for the fifth and sixth place decider, and despite his good form earning him a game, Nicolette was solid in her performance and took the win 3-1.
In the opening match of finals day, Samuel Ince-Carvalhal beat Steven Xavier 3-0 to decide the final two placements of the top eight.
1st Place Nicolette Fernandes
2nd Place Ashley Khalil
3rd Place Taylor Fernandes
4th Place Gabby Fraser
1st Place Shomari Wiltshire
2nd Place Jason-Ray Khalil
3rd Place Alex Arjoon
4th Place Daniel Ince