CHORLEY'S Laura Massaro missed out on National Squash Championship glory as old foe Madeline Perry finally claimed revenge in Manchester.
They pair had contested the semi-finals in each of the last three years, and last year it was 12-10 in the fifth, so a close match was to be expected.
The first game went point for point un to 6-6, then Massaro, two-time champion and top seed who plays North West Counties League squash for East Lancashire, pulled clear to take the lead 11-6.
Perry, playing in her seventh sem-final in eight years and yet to win one, did much the same from the middle of the second, couldn’t capitalise on two game balls at 10-8 but after Massaro had levelled it was the 14-time Irish champion who found two crisp winners to level 12-10.
Both players looked a little edgy, with the odd error mixed in with patient rallying, but againin the third it was Perry who finished better, taking three points in a row from 7-7. Massaro pulled two back but then hit the tin as Perry took a 2-1 advantage.
The upset – the first one of the tournament – was on the cards, even more so when Perry took a 7-0 lead in the fourth. Massaro managed to lengthen the rallies, and got back to 5-8, but a return of serve kill by Perry, a lob that drifted out from Massaro brought up five match balls.
Perry needed only two as she pulled off an upset.