The KPMG and AMS Luxembourg Junior Open Squash tournament was held in the Top Squash Centre, Sandweiler, Luxembourg from 20-22 April as part of the European Squash Federation’s Junior Circuit. Eighty juniors from around Europe participated.
Taking part for the first time was Kim Cauchi of the Marsa Sports Club, photo, in the girls’ under-13 category.
In the quarter-final against Caroline Bacha (France) Kim soon settled into her rhythm and controlled the game from the very first point. Bacha was clearly unsettled by Kim’s high level of consistency and was unable to compete with the Maltese youngster’s power and control. An impressive 3-0 victory was the final result.
In the semifinals, Kim continued her good form with a dominating 3-0 victory over Laura Crabbe (Belgium) to reach her first European ranking tournament final.
The final saw Kim come up against top seed Gabi Fritsche (Netherlands). Gabi is the present number 16 in the girls under-13 European junior rankings and on paper was the clear tournament favourite. Kim however had other ideas. Accompanied in Luxembourg by her coach Paul Lake, Kim prepared meticulously and started the first game with a clear game plan racing to a 9-0 lead before Gabi could manage to find any sort of length or rhythm. By then, Kim’s confidence was sky-high and she managed to close out the first game with two excellently timed forehand dropshots.
The second game was extremely tight. The two youngsters exchanged shot for shot with both playing some excellent controlled squash. The more experienced Fritsche increased the tempo and forced Kim into rushing some easy shots and so producing some simple mistakes. At 9-9 Kim managed to regain her composure and find that extra touch playing two un-retrievable forehand crosscourts to take the second game 11-9 and a 2-0 lead.
In the third game Kim was not about to let Gabi back into the match and with a very composed and powerful display took the final set 11-1 and so the match and title back home to Malta.
Kim is supported by the Marsa Sports Club, coached by Paul Lake, sponsored by Wilson, and is a member of the Marsa Sports Club Junior Squash Development Programme.