Pictured Right - Under 23 Championships Winners - Chris Van Der Salm (Left) and Casey Owen (Right)
Chris Van Der Salm has claimed his second New Zealand Under 23 Championship title whilst Casey Owen has claimed her first after an exciting weekend of games at the Timaru Squash Club.
Van Der Salm had a Bye in his first round and headed into his second round fresh to face Jo Williams. Williams had come through taking a win against Regan McNaught in four the previous night but his winning streak was not to continue with Van Der Salm taking the win in 3. In the Semi-Finals Van Der Salm came up against Tyler Ranger. Ranger had claimed two wins in 3 against Sam McCarroll and Jayden Millard in his previous rounds. Van Der Salm looked set to make his way to the final with another 3-0 win when he went 2-0 up on Ranger, however Ranger had other ideas and he fought back hard to level the score 2-2. The last game was a nail biter going down to the wire but it was not meant to be Rangers day as he lost out 12-10 in the fifth. The final saw Van Der Salm take on Scott Galloway. Galloway had only dropped one game on his way to final and he was looking to push Van Der Salm to try and claim this title. Galloway took the first game but Van Der Salm didn't let this phase him as he came out and proceeded to take a 2-1 lead. Galloway managed to level the scores and send the match to the fifth but it was not meant to be as Van Der Salm claimed his second successive Under 23's trophy.
In the women's draw Casey Owen received a bye first up and then took her next two win in 3 against Hayley Flett and Emily Woodworth to get herself into the final. Owen came up against Zoe Dykzeul who took a win in 3 against Kimberley Higgs and then a win in 4 against Emily Flett. The Women's Open was a very similar situation to the men's final with Dykzeul claiming the first game before Owen fired back to take a 2-1 win. Dykzeul proceeded to level the game score in the fourth to send the match down to the wire. Owen however fought hard and eventually managed to get over the line and take the win 11-9 in the fifth.
Congratulations to all participants and thanks to the Timaru Squash Club for hosting a great tournament.
Full results can be found on iSquash here