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Aida Sekkei Greetings Championships: Tsukue and Midorikawa Victorious

Ryunosuke Tsukue and Akari Midorikawa took the titles at the Challenger 5 & 3 level Aida Sekkei Greetings Squash Championships in Saitama, Japan on Sunday afternoon.

The tournament, which began on Friday, February 11, was domestically restricted due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with only those currently based in Japan being allowed to participate.

Tsukue came in as the tournament’s No.3 seed, and in good form having won his last two events on Tour, and that continued into this Challenger 5 level draw in Saitama, as he came through the event without dropping a game.

After receiving a bye through the opening round, the World No.272 then began his tournament with a victory over No.5 seed Naoki Sone in straight games, before then downing the No.2 seed, Naoki Hayashi, to make it into the final.

There, he came up against the tournament’s top seed, Tomotaka Endo, but was able to get the job done inside 40 minutes, winning 11-6, 11-2, 11-8 to claim his third consecutive Challenger Tour title.

The women’s event was won by top seed Akari Midorikawa, with the 16-year-old securing her maiden title on Tour. She started the week with a win against No.5 seed Ryoko Kadota before then defeating No.3 seed Yukino Sakurai to make the final.

On Sunday afternoon in Saitama, Midorikawa came up against No.4 seed Kozue Onizawa, and although she dropped the third game, the 16-year-old was able to take the title, her first on Tour, in just her second professional event.

Results: Aida Sekkei Greetings Squash Championships
Men’s Final
[3] Ryunosuke Tsukue (JPN) bt [1] Tomotaka Endo (JPN) 3-0: 11-6, 11-2, 11-8 (40m)

Women’s Final
[1] Akari Midorikawa (JPN) bt [4] Kozue Onizawa (JPN) 3-1: 11-5, 11-6, 10-12, 11-5 (38m)

Men’s Semi-Finals
[1] Tomotaka Endo (JPN) bt [4] Shota Yasunari (JPN) 3-0: 11-8, 17-15, 11-3 (30m)
[3] Ryunosuke Tsukue (JPN) bt [2] Naoki Hayashi (JPN) 3-0: 11-1, 11-3, 11-6 (42m)

Women’s Semi-Finals
[1] Akari Midorikawa (JPN) bt [3] Yukino Sakurai (JPN) 3-0: 11-1, 11-6, 11-5 (25m)
[4] Kozue Onizawa (JPN) bt [2] Ayaka Matsuzawa (JPN) 3-2: 11-3, 7-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-3 (45m)

Men’s Quarter Finals
[1] Tomotaka Endo (JPN) bt Yuta Ando (JPN) 3-0: 11-5, 11-8, 13-11 (30m)
[4] Shota Yasunari (JPN) bt [7] Tomomine Murayama (JPN) 3-1: 11-6, 6-11, 11-4, 11-7 (35m)
[3] Ryunosuke Tsukue (JPN) bt [5] Naoki Sone (JPN) 3-0: 11-5, 11-3, 11-2 (36m)
[2] Naoki Hayashi (JPN) bt [6] Muhammad Haris Iqbal (PAK) 3-0: 11-1, 11-6, 11-5 (24m)

Women’s Quarter Finals
[2] Ayaka Matsuzawa (JPN) bt Waka Tachibana (JPN) 3-0: 11-0, 11-5, 11-3 (18m)
[4] Kozue Onizawa (JPN) bt [6] Akiko Midorikawa (JPN) 3-0: 11-6, 11-7, 11-3 (17m)
[3] Yukino Sakurai (JPN) bt Himari Midorikawa (JPN) 3-0: 11-3, 11-7, 11-2 (17m)
[1] Akari Midorikawa (JPN) bt [5] Ryoko Kadota (JPN) 3-0; 11-0, 11-2, 11-1 (15m)

Men’s Round One
Yuta Ando (JPN) bt [8] Kosei Toki (JPN) 3-0: 11-3, 11-5, 11-3 (25m)
[7] Tomomine Murayama (JPN) bt Yuta Kiyosawa (JPN) 3-1: 11-6, 12-10, 9-11, 11-6 (46m)
[5] Naoki Sone (JPN) bt [WC] Yuki Tokuhara (JPN) 3-0: 11-7, 11-3, 11-6 (32m)
[6] Muhammad Haris Iqbal (PAK) bt Shahzad Ali (PAK) 3-0: 14-12, 11-9, 11-2 (35m)

Women’s Round One
Himari Midorikawa (JPN) bt [7] Mika Watanabe (JPN) 3-1: 7-11, 11-6, 11-7, 11-8 (28m)

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