Dipika loses title clash at Tournament of Champions

January 27th, 2012 - 4:29 pm ICT by IANS  

New York, Jan 27 (IANS) Squash mom Natalie Grinham taught her opponent Dipika Pallikal a thing or two about court coverage and strength beating her Indian rival 11-4, 11-3, 11-3 in the women’s final of the Tournament of Champions competition here Thursday.

American Grinham, the 33-year-old mother of a 19-month son, who has played under the Dutch flag since marrying fellow squash player Tommy Berden, kept her 20-year-old opponent off guard and off balance.

“Dipika is quite handy with the racquet and she volleys quite well, so I made sure not to put the ball where she could easily reach it,” said Grinham, who was relentless in picking up every offensive effort that Pallikal threw at her.

The former World No.2 also used length and width to keep her opponent out of the middle court. Grinham’s crosscourt drop from the front left wall proved especially effective.

“I just didn’t have any strength left in my legs,” said the rising star from India who was playing her ninth match in 10 days.

In the men’s final, top seed and current World No.2 Nick Matthew won the title defeating his long-time rival and World No.1 James WiIlstrop, 8-11, 11-9, 11-5, 11-7 before a jam packed crowd that was glued to their seats in Vanderbilt Hall at Grand Central Terminal for the entire 85 minutes of match play.

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