R1: Declan 2-0 Benji – Charlie 2-1 Bernat

Charlie Lee (ENG) 2-1 Bernat Jaume (ESP)  11-9, 7-11, 11-4 (45m)
Declan James (ENG) 2-0 [WC] Benjamin Aubert (FRA)  12-10, 11-5 (26m)

Intense two matches, between the players and the refs…. Bernat and Benji not that impressed with the decisions, the French up 10/7 in the first game losing 12/10 thanks to three strokes, and Bernat frustrated from the second game onwards.

But as the Spain/England match was concerned, Charlie put a lot of work in Bernat legs in the first two games, and it seemed to pay off in the decider as the Spanish made a few unforced errors at crucial times…


Sometimes you’ve got to realise that the hard work will end up paying, although you lose  the game. I’m still relatively inexperienced on the Pro Tour with my time out, but I’m learning every day. And these matches are exactly what you need, especially with a different pressure with a BO3.

I was really happy to win the first, having that mental advantage, and then normally, you relax a little bit, not fully but being a bit more shot making, a bit more aggressive because they HAVE to take the next game. And although I lost the second game, and then it’s a shoot out, I came out quite well in the third game, that’s when my best squash came up.

Every one around me has really helped, Rob Owen is looking after me, I have a great team, and I have Paul Coll as sparring, who is very strong mentally and quite decent physically (he laughs). Spending time with him, sparring with him, and he made it to the top, while staying a nice guy… He is a great role model, and I’m lucky to have him on my team really.


“Relieved! The first game was a little bit tense, I made five errors which you just can’t do at this level. You can’t give anyone a five point lead and then I found myself at 10-7 down.

“When you’ve got the confidence and the momentum, you can get yourself out of those situations, and I think that is what happened there. I am feeling good and I got myself out of trouble, and then the second was more straightforward. I put a big push at the start of that one, so I am happy to get off 2-0.”