Squash: Jackman shows ambition

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THE first world circuit tournament since Susan Devoy ended her eight-year reign as world No 1 produced a string of upsets yesterday with English women ambitious to succeed the New Zealander among the surprise losers.

Sue Wright, the fourth seed, and Lisa Opie, the fifth seed, were both beaten in the first round of the Leekes Classic in Cardiff, and Cassie Jackman, the English national champion, had to battle back from two games down against Senga Macfie. Jackman, hampered by an Achilles injury, was fortunate to survive 7-15, 14-17, 15-13, 15-9,

15-11 against the England No 10. Opie lost 13-15, 15-5, 15-7, 15-7, raising further questions about how long her career can continue.

Wright is apparently in good shape, but met an opponent revitalised. Sarah Fitz-Gerald, a member of the Australian team who took the world title from England in October, struck drives and volleys with consistent pace and length, and recovered to win 8-15, 12-15, 15-11, 15-12, 15-3.

Meanwhile, Jahangir Khan reached only his second quarter-final in 18 months with his second victory in two days. Jahangir, whose career was almost ended by a persistent back injury, beat the Australian qualifier, Adam Schreiber

15-12, 15-10, 15-8. Schreiber, who had beaten England's Simon Parke in the first round, showed himself to be an improving competitor.

Results, Sport in Short, page 31