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Martin Svec

Squash Eredivisie - Speelronde 6 Preview: Svec Happy To Break Top 100

The Frans Otten Stadium plays host to a Challenger Tour event for the second time in 2021, with the Squash Eredivisie – Speelronde 6 taking place in Amsterdam from Friday 20 to Sunday 22 August.

The Challenger 3 level tournament is being run with regional entry restrictions, meaning anyone permanently residing in Europe has been allowed to enter the event.

The tournament features both a men’s and women’s draw, with 10 nationalities represented across the 32 players in action over the next three days in Amsterdam.

World No.38 Milou van der Heijden will headline the women’s event on home soil. She will be joined by compatriot Tessa ter Sluis, Switzerland’s Ambre Allinckx and Hungarian No.1 Hannah Chukwu in the top four seedings.

Dutch No.1 Roshan Bharos, Belgium’s Joeri Hapers and Zimbabwean Blessing Muhwati will be contenders for the men’s title, with Czech Republic’s Martin Svec as the top seed.

We spoke to the World No.96 prior to the tournament, and he is looking forward to getting back into a tournament, having last featured on the PSA Tour back in May, and that he is feeling no extra pressure about being the event’s top seed.

“I haven’t played a PSA match for almost three months so its difficult to say. I’ve put in some good work over the summer, including a two week camp in the mountains and I feel really good on court so I hope for the best but let’s see how quickly I can get back into the match practice,” he explained.

“Every time I travel for the tournament, I try to win it so it doesn’t really matter for me if I am seeded No.1 or unseeded. Actually it might be the opposite, seedings giving me some extra confidence boost before the tournament.

“After the break I just hope to get as many good matches as possible to get ready for the bigger tournaments and rest of the season.”

Having made the finals of his last two Challenger Tour events, Svec moved inside the top 100 in the World Rankings for the first time in June. He is now one of three Czech players inside the top 100, but admits he would prefer to be in the top 50, thank to be the Czech No.1 right now.

“It feels great, it was one of my goals for few years and I am happy I finally managed to break it as I was really close to it for almost three seasons. I know I was putting lot of pressure on myself, but now I can feel that since I am in [the top 100] I am playing more freely and enjoying my game more,” Svec said.

“Of course, it’s always nice to be No.1 in your country, but I would prefer to climb the World Rankings and say, make the top 50 over being No.1 in the Czech Republic as World No.80.”

Svec comes into this tournament looking for his first victory since 2018, when he claimed the title at the Keith Grainger Memorial UCT Open Squash Championships. Since then, he has lost in three finals, a record he wants to change this week.

“I am not gonna lie I would be really happy. My record in the finals is not very good so I think it is the right time to change it.”

The event takes place from Friday 20 to Sunday 22 August at the Frans Otten Stadium in Amsterdam, where Martin Svec is the top seed for the tournament. Follow the PSA Challenger Tour on Twitter and Facebook for daily updates from the event.

Men’s First Round Draw: Squash Eredivisie – Speelronde 6
[1] Martin Svec (CZE) v Rene Mijs (NED)
Georg Stoisser (AUT) v [7] Ondrej Vorlicek (CZE)
[5] Marc ter Slis (NED) v Luke Stauffer (NED)
Fynn Schuck (GER) v [3] Joeri Hapers (BEL)
[4] Blessing Muhwati (ZIM) v Pablo Dolz (ESP)
Lennard Heinrichs (GER) v [6] Julius Benthin (GER)
[8] Aron Astray (ESP) v [WC] Tjeu Dubbeldam (NED)
Rowan Damming (NED) v [2] Roshan Bharos (NED)

Women’s First Round Draw: Squash Eredivisie – Speelronde 6
[1] Milou van der Heijden (NED) v Naomi Nohar (NED)
[WC] Megan van Drongelen (NED) v [7] Lea Barbeau (FRA)
[8] Taba Taghavi (FRA) v Jacqueline Peychar (AUT)
Marta Dominguez Fernandez (ESP) v [3] Ambre Allinckx (SUI)
[4] Hannah Chukwu (HUN) v Fleur Maas (NED)
Gabi Fritsche (NED) v [6] Saskia Beinhard (GER)
[5] Eva Fertekova (CZE) v Katerina Tycova (GER)
Juliette Permentier (NED) v [2] Tessa ter Sluis (NED)

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