Melbourne’s Rex Hedrick claimed his fifth title of the year when he wore down third seeded Englishman Eddie Charlton to claim the Queensland Open in straight games in Brisbane on Sunday.
Hedrick was able to absorb everything Charlton tried then turned the screws in the third game to win the final 11-7, 11-6, 11-5 in a match that lasted just over an hour.
Earlier, top seeded New Zealander Amanda Landers-Murphy claimed the women’s title with a tough 11-9, 11-6, 8-11, 11-5 win over third ranked Czech Olga Ertlova.
Hedrick now heads to Canada for two tournaments before he attempts to qualify for the PSA World Championship in Qatar in December.He leaves Australia in a rich vein of form, having won the ACT, NSW and South Australian Opens this year as well as the Australia Day Challenge in January.
“I started the year with the plan to win some tournaments, because I was runner-up for quite a few before I finally broke through, and now they’re coming a bit more often,” he said.
“It’s probably time now to start going for some bigger events and trying to break in a bit further by playing the higher ranked boys.:
Hedrick has always been known for his pace and conditioning and he used both to full effect against Charlton.
“I’ve been working a lot on my speed and fitness and in such hot conditions you kind of just have to rally up and down the wall a little bit,” he said.
“He played the type of game I expected, although I thought he would try and take me in short a little bit more than he did because he’s got nice racket skills. But again because the ball was so hot it was hard to do that because I could counter him quite quickly.”
Landers-Murphy added the Queensland Open to the South Australian crown she won in June although she was made to work for it by the persistent Ertlova.
The New Zealander claimed a close first game then won seven points in a row to win the second after being down 6-4.
Ertlova bounced back to win the fourth as she targeted Landers-Murphy’s backhand, but the left-hander from Rotorua dominated the fourth and won the title with her second match point.
“I was just trying to stick to my game plan, I know she was trying to attack my backhand a lot and I was just trying to push up and stop it,” Landers-Murphy said. “She played some awesome shots in the third and I had to try and change my game up a bit because it just wasn’t working any more.”
Landers-Murphy now heads home to New Zealand to prepare for the World Women’s Teams Championship in France in November.