The journey of three Barbadian squash players came to an end Wednesday afternoon during the round of 16 of the 2017 Professional Squash Association Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. and Tourism Development Corporation Barbados Open.
The second edition of the ongoing tournament being held at Barbados Squash Club, Marine Garden, Christ Church, began with local number two Rhett Cumberbatch against Kale Wilson of Trinidad and Tobago, the number three seeded player in the tournament and who is ranked 180 in the world.
Cumberbatch had lots of support on court number two, especially from his father Monty Cumberbatch, former president of the squash association and his three brothers Bryant, Gavin and Khamal who all cheered at each point gained but in the end it was Wilson who prevailed 3-1 in the best of five sets showdown and advanced into the quarterfinals after a game that lasted 36 minutes.
Even though Cumberbatch was able to pull the third set back after Wilson went ahead 2-0, the Trinidadian showed his class in the fourth set to come out on top 13-11, 11-8, 9-11 and 11-6.
It was a spirited performance from Cumberbatch, showing lots of fight from as early as the opening set when he was down 6-10 to get his way back 10-10, then 11-11, with both players needing to score two points in order to secure the set. Wilson executed a soft forehand drop shot above the tin to take the one point lead followed by an unforced error from Cumberbatch that gave him the 1-0 lead.
Wilson took the second set by three points (11-8) to lead the contest 2-0 but Cumberbatch had his moment in the third stanza after rallying from behind to tie the score 5-5 and from there proceeded to take the advantage 6-5 as both men appeared focused and determined not to give anything away until eventually the scores were tied 9-9 and Cumberbatch with two wonderful kill shots came out on top.
Wilson however returned to close out the fourth set and the game for a well-deserved victory.
Cumberbatch’s younger brother Bryant lost his round of 16 match to 19-year-old and the eighth seeded Spencer Love-Joy of the United States who made it look so easy in straight sets 11-3, 11-3 and 11-4. He was very much Bryant’s kill-joy.
One of the biggest upsets of the tournament was the incredible play of the unseeded Edgar Ramirez Bautista of Colombia who defeated the number six seeded Joe Chapman of the British Virgin Islands, 11-7, 11-6 and 11-4 on court one.
Meanwhile Eddie Charlton of England, the number one seed, looked good when he came up against Ahad Raza of Canada for a comfortable 11-5, 11-6 and 11-6 victory.
In fact both of the top seeded players came out on top with the number two Juan Camilo Vargas of Colombia making light work of Barbadian Joshua Seale 11-2, 11-5 and 11-3.
Two Canadians, Thomas King and Cory McCartney came up against each other in what could be described as a bitter-sweet occasion. Thomas seeded at five had to fight for the win 15-13, 11-9, 11-13 and 13-11 against his countryman.
Number four seed Cameron Stafford of Cayman Islands won in straight sets 11-7, 11-6 and 11-5 over Guyanese player Sunny Seth who was responsible Tuesday night for denying Barbados’ number one player Shawn Simpson a place in Wednesday’s round of 16.
Another United States player, Timothy Lasusa, starred with a 11-3, 11-3, 11-3 victory over Armando Olguin of Mexico.