Commonwealth Silver for Karakal's Joel Makin

Commonwealth Silver for Joel

Karakal's Joel Makin claimed a Silver Medal for Wales in the Men's Squash last night as top seed Paul Coll became the first Kiwi to win squash gold.

Joel seemed to have got his match preparation spot-on, as it was he who made the quicker start and stunned the World #2 to snatch the first game 11-3.

His attacking strategy continued to cause Paul problems in a hotly contested second game which the New Zealander finally edged 9-11, to level the match.

Joel, who enjoyed the vast majority of the crowd’s support, responded fantastically in the third game with a masterful display of attacking squash that saw him take another close game 11-8, for a 2-1 lead.

Both players showed incredible athleticism that drew gasps and applause from the crowd. Joel threw everything at his opponent in an effort to gain the win, but it was the top seed who finally held on to a slim lead to take the game 8-11 and level the match for a second time.

The fifth game became a shootout for Gold with both finalists producing some thrilling squash. However, it was Paul who gained an early lead and although Joel continued to throw everything at him, the 2018 runner up began to establish a slight court advantage and grab five gold medal balls at 10-5.

But even then, things were far from over as Joel, displaying the fighting spirit that is becoming his trademark, went all out, saving two match points before Paul eventually brought the thrilling encounter to an end at 7-11 and claim Gold.

This was a match that had everything, and for those who understand the physical demands of top class squash, was nothing short of astounding.

The combative, competitive and gentlemanly spirit in which the game was played, was a fantastic advertisement for the game and both players should be incredibly proud of themselves and their medals.

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