EP teenage squash star Kacey- Leigh Dodd shrugged off the shock of losing the first game 11-0 in two minutes to defeat Sarah O'Grady 3-2 in the Jesters U23 women's squash final at Old Grey yesterday.
The 17-year-old Alexander Road High schoolgirl was joined on the winners' podium by Gauteng player JP Britz, who produced a superb play of disciplined squash to outclass Kyle Maree 3-0 in a 30-minute encounter.
Although winning the first game gave O'Grady a handy advantage, Dodd levelled the match by winning the second game 15-13.
O'Grady was back on top in the third to go ahead 2-1, but Dodd then began to control things better and she put her opponent under pressure with some strong drives from the front of the court. She made it 2-2 and then pulled ahead for a 6-2 lead in the fifth. Between two evenly matched players, this was a decisive advantage and she wrapped it up on her first match point, 0-11 15-13 6-11 11-7 11-6.
Britz, who played for SA Country Districts in the Jarvis Cup interprovincial in PE in July, continued his excellent form in the Jesters Series, which has seen legs played in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
He defeated Michael Wood (Northerns) in one final and lost to him in the next, but yesterday was in control from the outset against Maree. His tireless retrieving and excellent control meant Maree was under constant pressure and this induced several errors which paved the way for Britz's victory.
The final score was 11-6 11-5 11-4.