Simon Rösner gatecrashed the party again to book a place in the final of the Canary Wharf Classic.

After beating the English number three James Willstrop in straight games in the quarter-finals, he outfought home number two Peter Barker in a brutal semi-final, and tonight (March 27) he meets England number one Nick Matthew in the biggest match of his career.

Rösner was a comfortable winner against Willstrop, who was suffering from the effects of a flu virus, let alone the fatigue brought on by five months out of action recovering after a hip operation.

Tonight there was not a moment of comfort in a tense, physical battle with Barker.

There were frequent collisions mid-court and Rösner clearly blamed his opponent for incidents that resulted in 38 refereeing decisions.

Rösner, the highest ranked German squash player of all time, booked his place in the final courtesy of a steely come-from-behind victory against Barker.

That win was his first ever against the Essex man, coming just 24 hours after he claimed his first ever tour win over Willstrop, the former world No.1 from Pontefract.

He'll be hoping to cap a breakthrough week with a first ever tour win over the three-time world champion from Sheffield in the finale.

"Beating James for the first time in my career yesterday, and beating Peter for the first time in my PSA career today, at the same tournament, is something special for me for sure and I can't wait to play another Englishman," said Rösner.

"I'm just really relieved and so happy to be in the final in front of such a great crowd and in such a great venue.

"It was a little bit scrappy at times tonight but taking the win is the main thing and I'm just going to try and relax now and come back refreshed tomorrow.

“As for the physical issues, I wasn’t happy with a lot of it. There is no need for that stuff on court. You can play hard, but you always need to play fair.”

Defending champion Matthew moved into the final for a fifth time in six years with a commanding 3-0 win over compatriot Daryl Selby.

The 34-year-old, who is on course to complete a hat-trick of PSA World Tour event triumphs after claiming both the Swedish Open and Windy City Open inside the last month, showed his class as he withstood a spirited fight from the talented 32-year-old from Essex to squeeze a straight games 12-10, 11-6, 11-9 win in 55-minutes.

But the pragmatic three-time world champion said he wasn't getting carried away ahead of what promises to be a tough encounter.

"I'm not really thinking about what's gone on so far this year because you have to start each match and each tournament from scratch," said Matthew.

"You can take confidence from what's happened before, but you can't rely on it, and you have to earn the right to win and I'm going to have to improve again tomorrow and continue to take it one day at a time.

"Although I've had a lot of success here I've also had my fair share of disappointment as well so I'm not taking anything for granted.

"Two years ago I was at one of the lowest points of my career here and my racket ended up in the Thames after one match.

"Those moments can really remind you to keep your perspective and helps me appreciate my squash when I'm playing well and enjoying it."

The final takes place at 7.30pm at the East Wintergarden.


(1) Nick Matthew (England) beat (6) Daryl Selby (England) 12-10,11-6,11-9 (55 mins)

(4) Simon Rösner (GER) bt (2) Peter Barker (ENG) 3-11, 12-10, 11-5, 12-10 (78 mins)

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