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Gregory Gaultier (left) and Raphael Kandra (right)

Prague RoundUp: Gaultier Claims PSA Challenger Title

France’s former World No.1 Gregory Gaultier lifted his 41st PSA title after defeating Germany’s World No.249 Raphael Kandra in the final of the Expression Networks Nolan and Liam’s Tournament taking place in Prague, Czech Republic.

The PSA Challenger event is the first PSA tournament since the six-month COVID-19 enforced suspension of the Tour and Gaultier ensured it was he who got his hands on the title with a strong 11-5, 11-5, 11-5 victory over German No.2 Kandra.

The Frenchman made his comeback from a serious injury lay-off at January’s Tournament of Champions in New York and showed that his ready for action when the PSA World Tour resumes as he comfortably dispatched Kandra in straight-games to take the title in 53 minutes in his 80th PSA final.

“I’m very happy with this week,” Said Gaultier afterwards.

“Starting the season with a positive note. I trained so hard the last six months and was looking forward to compete again. I’m very thankful to my team in France and Czech Republic without all of them I wouldn’t come back, thanks to all my coaches, physios, doctors and sparring partners.

“Same to my club Annecy and all my sponsors who kept helping me during that tough time I had the last two years. So thankful to my close friend Abir Ray (Expression networks and Squashrevolution) who sponsors me for more than 10 years, he called me and said ‘Greg lets make an event’ like three weeks ago, so he raised the prize money and decided to call the event on my kids name which was cute.

“Thanks to Squash club Strahov and David Tomanek for organising everything here and everyone involved at the Strahov academy with Joan Lezaud and Lukas Jelinek. Thanks Raphy for the final, it was hard, very hot on the court and tough rallies. Looking forward now for Manchester.”

Kandra added: “Tough one. All credit to Greg, he was on fire today. He deserved the win. I am still happy with my performance. Still room for improvement but a good start for the season.”

Both Gaultier and Kandra will be in action next week when the PSA World Tour begins at the Manchester Open from September 16-22.

Result: Final
[4] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) beats [1] Raphael Kandra (GER) 3-0: 11-5, 11-5, 11-5 (53m)

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