BY FORTUNE MBELE
ZIMBABWE junior squash ace Ryan Gwidzima grabbed silver at the boys Under-15 silver event two final of the Dunlop Manchester Junior Open, losing to England Junior champion Alexander Broadbridge at Grove Park Squash Club on Sunday.
Gwidzima (14) won his first game 11-2, before losing the second and third 11-9, 11-5 respectively and squared it up on the fourth with a narrow 13-11 triumph and then succumbed to the English junior champion 11-9 in the last game of the final to lose 3-2.
The teenage squash sensation, who is on scholarship at Wycliffe College in England, courtesy of the Ryan Gwidzima Trust, had accounted for another Briton Bilen Malik 3-1 (10-12, 11-8, 13-11, 11-0) to make it to the final.
A post on the trust’s Facebook page after the final yesterday read: “After saving a couple of match balls in the fourth game, Ryan (Gwidzima) battled hard and unfortunately lost 11-9 in the fifth! Well done to his opponent (Broadbridge) and thank you to the organisers of the event.” Up next for Gwidzima is a national schools event where he will be representing Wycliffe College and the German Junior Open, where he will be representing Zimbabwe.
“Ryan will be playing in the national schools second round event this week for Key Stage 4 for Wycliffe College, and then looking forward to the German Junior Open at the end of February in Hamburg,” the trust added.
In his first tournament of the year, Gwdzima, a product of Suburbs Squash Club in Bulawayo, was humbled in the Dunlop British Junior Open early in January losing to England’s Rishi Srivastava 11-4, 11-6 and 11-5 (3-0) at the University of Birmingham in the second round after being drawn in the competition on a bye.
Tayne Turnock, another Zimbabwean also took part in the Dunlop British Junior Open, crashing out in the first round with a 3-0 (11-4, 11-8 and 11-3) defeat to Scottish John Meehan in the boys Under-19 category.
Turnock is the Safeguard Zimbabwe Open Squash champion after he beat Zambian Ken Mwape 3-0 (11-9, 11-7, 11-8) in the final at Suburbs Squash Club in Bulawayo last year in August.