Pilley bows out too
THERE will be no Australian representation in the second round of the PSA men's world squash championship for the first time since the tournament began in 1976 after the country's No 1 player Cameron Pilley lost to three-time winner Nick Matthew.
Pilley, of Yamba, went down to the Englishman 11-8 11-6 8-11 11-9 in 67 minutes.
It follows the exit from the tournament in Seattle of former Lismore player and Australian No 2 Ryan Cuskelly, who lost to an Indian opponent the previous day.
Despite dropping out of the Qatar Classic last week due to injury, Matthew was in top form and the 35-year-old used his incredible fitness to make some stunning retrievals as Pilley sought to use his renowned powerful drives to open up the court.
Matthew went on to pull away at the business end of the first and second games to open up a commanding lead after Pilley found the tin with a number of drops.
World No 19 Pilley clawed back in an electrifying third game when he unsettled Matthew's rhythm.
In a tight fourth game Pilley pushed his opponent to the limit before Matthew prevailed.
"I missed out on Qatar because of a stomach injury so I've had plenty of time to build up to this match," Matthew said.
"He's always been a tricky opponent for me throughout my career. If you see the head-to-head results there have been two or three wins for him and they've always been around four games and gone to tie-breaks.
"I'm just happy to get through the first round after missing Qatar. It was a potential banana skin.
"He's a top 20 player and very dangerous so I'm just happy to emerge from that one with the win."
Matthew goes on to face Egyptian qualifier Karim El Hammamy after the 20-year-old downed Declan James in their first round match-up.