LOCAL HOPE: Brunswick Heads squash player Corey Strickland, who will face tough competition from Queenslanders in the Ballina O
LOCAL HOPE: Brunswick Heads squash player Corey Strickland, who will face tough competition from Queenslanders in the Ballina O

Corey carries the local hopes

BRUNSWICK HEADS squash player Corey Strickland will have to cause some major upsets to prevent an all-Queensland 2final 1in the Ballina Squash Open this weekend. The best of the local chances, Strickland faces tough opposition from the top two ranked players in Queensland, Steve Finitsis and Brad Freeme. Freeme, ranked No 2 in his State, said he expected to face his mate, the No 1 ranked Finitsis, in the final. "It will be a tough tournament but I should make the final against Steve," he said. "It could go either way; we usually play close matches." The pair have faced off in the four-wall game for more than a decade. Finitsis plays on the Professional Squash Association world tour where he is ranked in the world's top 70, while Freeme prefers to stay at home and rule the Brisbane competition. Tournament organiser Kim Monks said she expected the pair to dominate the mens' open competition. "These guys are a step above," she said. "It is the best quality of squash players at the tournament for many years." Eighty players will compete for $4000 in money and prizes at the Ballina Squash Centre in Norton Street from 8am today. Finals are scheduled between 2pm and 4pm tomorrow. Spectators are welcome.



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