The third delegation of Team USA juniors sent to compete in the British Junior Open has produced the program’s best results yet, including a record seven quarterfinalists and an unprecedented upset of the reigning world junior champion in Sheffield, England.
The final day of the tournament is Friday, January 6, with many of Team USA’s thirty-four players set to compete for final finishing positions.
New York City’s Daelum Mawji progressed father in a main draw than any other American as a BU17 9/16 seed, reaching Thurday’s semifinal where he lost against Egypt’s two seed Omar El Torkey.
Team USA’s standout result of the tournament came during the round of sixteen where U.S. junior champion Andrew Douglas shocked the BU19 top seed and reigning world junior champion Eain Yow Ng in five-games. The result was the first time a boy’s top seed failed to reach the quarterfinals since 1998. Douglas’ run in the main draw came to an end in the quarterfinals, however, where the eighteen-year-old lost against India’s Adhitya Raghavan. Douglas, a 9/16 seed, will compete for fifth place against France’s 3/4 seed Victor Couin.
Other Team USA quarterfinalists included Marina Stefanoni (GU15), Thomas Rosini (BU15), Dana Santry (BU15), Lucie Stefanoni (GU13) and John Ho (BU13).
“This week at the BJO has once again proven that Team USA are on the right path towards achieving our ultimate goal of being the best team in the world, ” said Rich Wade, US Squash Director of National Teams and trip leader. “Each year that we have traveled to the BJO we have improved our overall results, but this year more than most we were able to get some major scalps, which reinforces that we’re moving in the right direction. Although the BJO is an individual event, US Squash/Team USA traveling as a team provides a unique opportunity for the players to experience the highs and lows of competition alongside their teammates. We hope that this year is a platform for future success with seven players making the quarterfinals this year.”
Read the recap of Team USA’s round of sixteen main draw performances here.
For the third consecutive year, Team USA sent a delegation of juniors to Sheffield as a national team elite development program with thirty-four players representing Team USA this year.
The British Junior Open is considered the most prestigious junior world age-group championship other than the U19 World Junior Championships, and some formidable names have been crowned BJO Champion in the past. Past winners include include, Nick Matthew, Greg Gaultier, Karim Darwish, Ramy Ashour and Mohamed Elshorbagy on the male side. On the women’s side, names such as Nicol David, Nour El Sherbini and Camille Serme are on the winners list.