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The 2016 Austrian Open is held inside the Europark shopping mall in Salzburg

Weenink Tops Austrian Open Draw

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Dutch World No.105 Sebastiaan Weenink leads the draw of the 2016 Austrian Open, PSA M5 tournament as he looks to claim a second career PSA World Tour title in the superb setting of an all-glass show court in Europark shopping mall in Salzburg.

Weenink, who lost in the final last year, is appearing at only his second PSA World Tour event of 2016 and comes off the back of a strong semi-final finish that he managed at the BCS Russian Open two weeks ago before succumbing to a defeat against Israel’s Daniel Poleshchuk.

However, the 29-year-old hasn’t tasted success on the PSA World Tour since late 2014, with his victory at the Investimax Winners Brussels Open in November of that year opening his account as far as titles are concerned.

Weenink is up against England’s Nick Mulvey in the opening round as he looks to kickstart his ambitions of doubling his PSA World Tour title tally, with the duo set to meet for the first time professionally.

Home hero Aqeel Rehman is also one of the frontrunners for the crown as the Austrian No.1 aims for a fifth PSA World Tour success.

The World No.112’s recent form has seen him make it past the first round of a main draw just once since September 2015 but, with a partizan crowd of locals cheering him on, Rehman looks set to improve on that record this time around. Jan Ryba stands between Rehman and a place in the last eight.

Englishman Joshua Masters will be looking to back up his strong recent displays with three semi-final finishes in his last five tournaments. Masters broke his PSA World Tour title duck five months ago at the Mbair UK Bexley Open and was unlucky to bow out in round one of his last event, the TRAC Oil & Gas North of Scotland Open, after going down in five to Egypt’s Karim Ali Fathi, a player who is ranked 43 places above Masters in the world rankings.

Masters will go head-to-head with Daniel Mekbib in the first round as he looks to maintain the performances that have taken him to a career-high World No.83 spot. The match will have extra significance for Masters, given that Mekbib eliminated his younger brother, Bradley, in the final round of qualifying for the event.

Baptiste Masotti is a dark horse for the tournament but captured his maiden PSA World Tour title just two months ago at the Iran Squash Federation Kish Persian Gulf event. He narrowly fell to a first round defeat in his next tournament but a series of strong recent showings means that he is a title contender in Austria. The Frenchman will take on wildcard Jakob Dirnberger who will be backed to the hilt by his home crowd.

Main Draw: PSA M5, Austrian Open, Salzburg, Austria
[LL] Jami Aijanen (FIN) v [Q] Rudi Rohrmuller (GER)
Tristan Eysele (RSA) v [5] Rui Soares (POR)
[4] Baptiste Masotti (FRA) v [WC] Jakob Dirnberger (AUT)
[Q] Jan Ryba (CZE) v [2] Aqeel Rehman (AUT)
[3] Joshua Masters (ENG) v [Q] Daniel Mekbib (CZE)
[Q] Elliot Selby (ENG) v [7] Micah Franklin (BER)
[6] Auguste Dussourd (FRA) v Ondrej Uherka (CZE)
[8] Nick Mulvey (ENG) v [1] Sebastiaan Weenink (NED)

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