SQUASH: Marshall on target to end long wait

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reports from Cardiff

Peter Marshall today triess to become the first home man to reach the final of the British Open for over 20 years after his third win at the Cardiff International Arena on a day when England was certain of semi- finalists in both men's and women's events.

The second-seeded British national champion kept the pace too high for his fellow England international Stephen Meads and was especially potent with his backhand drive in a 74-minute 15-7, 15-7,12-15, 15-4 victory.

It earned Marshall a semi-final with Brett Martin, last year's runner- up. The adventurous fourth-seeded Australian earned his berth with a 59- minute 17-14, 13-15, 15-10, 15-10 victory against Devon's Phil Whitlock.

Brett's younger sister, Michelle Martin, the defending champion, dropped her first game in three years in the tournament when an inspired spell from England's Fiona Geaves won her the second game. However, Martin beat Geaves, the seventh seed, 9-4, 4-9, 9-5, 9-2. Martin meets her fifth-seeded compatriot, Sarah FitzGerald, who defeated the young Northumbrian Jane Martin, 9-0, 9-3, 9-3, in just 31 minutes.

England achieved a semi finalist in the women's event too after the second seeded British National Champion Suzanne Horner won 6-9, 9-5,9-0, 6-9, 9-4, against Sue Wright earning a meeting with another Australian, Liz Irving.