Gaultier impresses in Swedish Open final

Niklas Lillman reports

Gaultier kept up his good form from earlier in the tournament, showing good movement and stopping Karim from hitting decisive shots. Points won often came due to errors by the opposite player, rather than an own winner.

In saying that, the quality of squash was still immense with some amazing pick-ups and rallies, much to the applause of an excited crowd in Linköping Sporthall. Gaultier eventually won the first game by 11-3.

The second game continued much in the same fashion, high quality squash from both players with Gaultier in control and Karim seemingly frustrated by the lack of clear opportunities to finish of rallies. 11-6 to Gaultier was the score in the second game and local Linköping squash player Andre Wikström noted that it would be an uphill task for Karim to get back in this game now.

So it proved as well with Gaultier controlling the game comfortably and finally coming out as a winner of the third game by 11-8.

[1] Grégory Gaultier (Fra) 3-0 [2] Karim Darwish (Egy) 11/3, 11/6, 11/8 (45m)

I didn’t actually think I was going to play this well, since I have had back spasms since I came back from New York.

I want to become world no 1 again, and I need the motivation from the crowd to get back to my top form. I have been fortunate to have my physio with me all along, he has done a great job on me all week long.

I also want to thank Fredrik and his team, the city of Linköping, sponsors etc for making sure that this tournament grows every year, which I hope it will keep doing for many years to come. I wish we had a similar event in France.

I wish you all the best of luck and as last few words I hope that Karim’s home country of Egypt soon will regain some peace and calm.

Gregory Gaultier



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