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Ben Smith

BRESS Breda Open Preview: Smith Aiming For First Tour Win

The fifth and final event on the Tour this week comes from the Netherlands, with the BRESS Breda Open taking place from Thursday, April 7 to Sunday, April 10 in the Dutch city of Breda.

The BRESS Sportcenter plays host to the Challenger 3 level competition, with 16 players hailing from 10 different nations, including Hong Kong, New Zealand and the host nation, the Netherlands, aiming to take home the glory from the tournament come Sunday afternoon.

Belgium’s Joeri Hapers, the World No.139, will be the top seed for the tournament, but Spain’s Sergio Garcia Pollan, who now sits at a career-high of World No.125, will actually be the highest ranked player in the tournament, with the pair as the favourites to meet in Sunday’s final.

England’s Ben Smith, Ukraine’s Valeriy Fedoruk, Dutch No.1 Roshan Bharos, Ireland’s Sam Buckley and the Scottish duo of Fergus Richards and Alasdair Prott make up the rest of the top eight seeds for this week’s Challenger 3 level competition in the Netherlands.

We spoke to Smith prior to the tournament starting, and he believes that after a good run in Aigburth two weeks ago, he is in good form, and ready to challenge for his first PSA Tour title come the end of the week.

“I feel like currently I am in very good form, playing some good squash and physically feeling in top shape. After a good run in the Liverpool Cricket Club Open, I am match sharp,” Smith said.

“As the No.3 seed, I have high expectations in this event, with the goal of winning it and taking my first PSA title.

“To take my first title on Tour would be massive for me and I would hope to use it as a stepping stone in the right direction.”

The Englishman currently occupies the World No.140 spot, eight places below his career-best, which her achieved at the end of last year. Smith admits that he needs to work on how consistent his game is if he is to make the world’s top 100.

“As the World No.140, I am aiming to break into the top 100 and to do this I believe I have to improve my consistency. I know I can play at that level, it’s just being able to do so on a more regular basis.”

The event takes place from Thursday, April 7 to Sunday, April 10 at the BRESS Sportcenter in Breda, and you can follow the PSA Challenger Tour on Twitter and Facebook for daily updates from the event.

First Round Draw: BRESS Breda Open
[1] Joeri Hapers (BEL) v Chung Yat Long (HKG)
Wailok To (HKG) v [5] Roshan Bharos (NED)
[7] Sam Buckley (IRL) v Matthew Lai (HKG)
Rene Mijs (NED) v [4] Valeriy Fedoruk (UKR)
[3] Ben Smith (ENG) v [WC] Marc ter Sluis (NED)
Laouenan Loaec (FRA) v [6] Fergus Richards (SCO)
[8] Alasdair Prott (SCO) v William Donnelly (NZL)
Conor Moran (IRL) v [2] Sergio Garcia Pollan (ESP)

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