For the third time in 2021, the Challenger Tour returns to Hamburg, with the DSQV Sportwerk Series No.5 taking place this weekend.
In February, the DSQV Sportwerk Challenger took place, while last month, the DSQV Sportwerk 5 & 3 was held. Once again, the Sportwerk Hamburg will play host to the tournament.
Like those previous events, this week’s tournament will once again be a domestic-only event due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with only those residing in Germany being allowed to enter.
Again, the two non-Germans in the men’s event will be Dutch No.1 Roshan Bharos, and Egypt’s Tarek Shehata, both of whom currently occupy spots inside the top 200 in the World Rankings, and will be amongst the top three seeds this week.
The women’s event features a eight-strong draw, with Latvian No.1 Ineta Mackevica as the top seed. The World No56 will be joined by German’s Saskia Beinhard, Katerina Tycova and Lea-Iris Murrizi as the seeded players. We spoke to Tycova prior to the event, a 21-year-old who is already up to World No.166 despite having only played four events as a professional. She reached the final of her first tournament on Tour and she has an ambitious rankings aim by the end of the calendar year.
“Currently I am very satisfied with my squash. The last year, I have trained hard and I have improved my technique and tactics in my squash and gained more physical strength. There’s still a long way to go but I see that my training is paying off more and more,” the German said.
“Of course it felt very good to reach my first final. I really wanted to get through the semi-final to play against Saskia [Beinhard].
“It’s never easy to play against a best friend especially because I have never sneaked a win against her. It was a very close match and it felt great to play on that level against her.”
That first final came on the exact same court as Tycova will be playing on this week at Sportwerk in Hamburg. The German is very happy that she is back, and also really pleased that her national federation continues to put on events during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s always great to play a tournament in Germany organised by my federation and I really like to play on the fantastic glass court in Hamburg. I hope I can play a good tournament again perform as well as in my last tournaments,” she explained.
“My next goal, of course, is to beat better players and improve my whole squash performance. By the end of this year, I want to reach the top 100. I know it’s an ambitious aim but I will really train hard to achieve it.”
Action from the DSQV Sportwerk Series No.5 will be streamed throughout the week on the PSA Challenger Tour YouTube channel, where you can watch Challenger Tour action, and interviews with rising stars.
Men’s Draw: DSQV Sportwerk Series No.5
 Roshan Bharos (NED) v Norman Junge (GER)
Dennis Welte (GER) v  Willi Wingelsdorf (GER)
 Lennard Heinrichs (GER) v Christoph Bluhm (GER)
Hendrik Vossing (GER) v  Tobias Weggen (GER)
 Tarek Shehata (EGY) v Jan Wipperfurth (GER)
Max Plettenberg (GER) v  Fynn Schuck (GER)
 Julius Benthin (GER) v Nils Schwab (GER)
Carsten Schoor (GER) v  Yannik Omlor (GER)
Women’s Draw: DSQV Sportwerk Series No.5
 Ineta Mackevica (LAT) v Mai-Ly Nguyen (GER)
Annika Lubbert (GER) v  Katerina Tycova (GER)
 Lea-Iris Murrizi (GER) v Laura Goulding (GER)
Lisa Seidensticker (GER) v  Saskia Beinhard (GER)