In a disappointing climax to the inaugural Squash Revolution Toronto Cup in Canada, home hero Shahier Razik was forced to retire injured midway through the second game to give the title of the PSA World Tour Challenger 15 event to Australia’s Ryan Cuskelly.
Top seed Razik had been hampered by a calf injury before Wednesday’s semi-final, but was able to use his experience and intimate knowledge of the courts at the Toronto Lawn Tennis Club to manoeuvre his way through.
“Cuskelly was undoubtedly aware of Razik’s impeded movement and made the opening rallies long and testing,” reported event spokesman Mike McCue. “The Canadian competed well but the Aussie always had a lead and finished the first game with a comfortable 11-5 margin.
“Cuskelly raced out to a commanding lead in the second as Razik’s movement became visibly pained. A three-minute injury break was not enough time to treat the problem, and although Shahier played three more rallies, the concession handshake was now inevitable.”
It was an additionally sad conclusion as Razik, the world No30 from Toronto, was the driving force behind this new PSA World Tour event.
The title is the eighth of New York-based Cuskelly’s career – but his second in a row in Canada.
“A big thanks to Squash Revolution for sponsoring the tournament, Shahier for taking care of logistics, and the hosting clubs/pros for welcoming the event into their clubs,” added McCue. “This was a unique event on the PSA Tour, with a total of nine clubs hosting matches throughout the week.
“The format exposed substantially more fans to the excitement of pro squash than most events. It was the first time many people have seen such high-level action. A city with a diverse squash community like Toronto was an appropriate host for such an event. Hopefully these clubs have been inspired to host events of their own.”
Picture shows champion Cuskelly (left) with Razik
2 Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) bt  Shahier Razik (CAN) 11-5, 7-1 ret. (34m)
Full results: http://www.psaworldtour.com/page/TournamentDetails/0,,13121~2066,00.html