ESF European Team Division 1 & 2 Squash Championships - finals day LIVE!

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ESF European Team Division 1 & 2 Squash Championships - finals day LIVE!

Live text commentary, scores and streaming of the final day at Uster Squash Arena in the Swiss canton of Zurich.

| Day 4 schedule & results | Live scores | Watch live: ESF YouTube or Eurovision Sport |

1911: ENGLAND ARE MEN'S CHAMPIONS AGAIN! You want drama? That final definitely delivered. Quite, quite incredible. Amid a bear pit atmosphere behind the glass court, the fourth game goes, inevitably, to a tiebreak. Amidst a flurry of referee decisions, it's Marwan who takes it 12-10 after Masotti puts two consecutive drop shots in the tin. Mohamed rushes on court for a brotherly hug. England - for a 44th time out of 50 - are European gold medallists.

1855: Wow. Marwan has somehow battled back from the brink to take the third game 11-8 - from an 8-4 deficit! He leads 2-1 and is fired up. Masotti takes his frustrations out on his racket. Suffice to say, I think that one may now be byond repair. Match score is 2-1 to France. Games tally is 7-7. Tension.

1845: England survive... for now. An absolutely sizzling second game, full of needle, decisions, a conduct stroke and marvellous rallies, goes the way of Marwan thanks to a serve that rolls flat out of the back wall nick! The English no.2 smiles contentedly. It's 1-1. Remember, France are 2-1 up in matches, and now 7-6 up in games.

1830: Defending champions England are in trouble here. Masotti takes the first game 11-7. France lead not only 2-1 in matches but now 7-5 in games overall. 

1804: Advantage France! The 2019 champions now lead 2-1. The highly experienced Gregoire Marche just has one shot too many for England's Tom Walsh, who gave a good account of himself but falls 11-7 12-10 11-6. The result will therefore come down to the final match: Marwan ElShorbagy v Baptiste Masotti - with the career head-to-head showing two wins apiece. In this match situation, it is well worth keeping an eye on games countback, which currently stands at 6-5 in France's favour.

1710: Mohamed ElShorbagy levels up this men's final at 1-1! This was a somewhat bad-tempered affair and Crouin very much comes off second best, suffering an astonishing bagel in the third. 11-5 11-6 11-0 is the final reckoning. Crouin was given a conduct warning at the end of the first for closing the door in the English no.1's face. His all-time record against the elder ElShorbagy brother is now 0-7. Tom Walsh v Gregoire Marche is next...  

1629: Bonmalais takes it! That match had everything. One rally at 8-4 had the crowd gasping in disbelief - it was the Frenchman who took it and Malik looks as if he needed oxygen after that as the final three points slip away. First blood to France, but, who knows, those two consolation games for Malik might come in very useful for England later... Mohamed ElShorbagy v Victor Crouin is next. The head-to-head doesn't make good reading for Crouin; it's 6-0 in the Beast of Bristol's favour.

1614: It's 2-2! We're in for a late, late finish here as Curtis Malik digs in brilliantly following the Bonmalais injury break and clinches the fourth game 12-10. Bonmalais didn't seem to encumbered by his injury - what guts from Malik. We're into a fifth. England still have both ElShorbagys in their locker, so this is now a massive game in the outcome of this final.

1558: After his 15-minute timeout, Bonmalais is fit to continue. It's 2/1 to the Frenchman and 1-1 in the fourth... 

1538: Drama here. Malik wins the third 11-4, then in the fourth at 0-0 there's a clash of legs just left of the T and Bonmalais goes down. He looks in real pain and on comes the physio to help him off the court. Bonmalais is hobbling. He takes a 15-minute timeout. We wait to find out whether the French no.3 will be fit enough to return.  

1505: So close for Curtis Malik. He's about to walk off court thinking he's made it 1-1 against Sebastien Bonmalais in this men's final opener, but doesn't get the referee decision he's looking for, the game continues and it slips away from the England player 12-10. With the way the line-ups are matched, every game could be crucial if the match finishes 2-2, so that could be a big moment.   

1445: No sooner has the dust settled from the historic women's final result than it's time for the men to take centre stage. Curtis Malik v Sebastien Bonmalais is first up. Their only career meeting was in February at the Windy City Open which the Frenchman won in three. A reminder of the order of play:

Curtis Malik v Sebastien Bonmalais
Mohamed ElShorbagy v Victor Crouin
Tom Walsh v Gregoire Marche
Marwan ElShorbagy v Baptiste Masotti 

1442: IT'S BELGIUM'S TITLE FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER! History is made here in Uster as Tinne Gilis wraps up victory in three games over Jasmine Hutton 10-8 12-10 11-2. The Belgian bench goes crazy. They are only the fourth different nation to win the women's European trophy. Tinne says in the on-court interview: "This is probably the proudest moment of my life." I'll be getting more reaction later. Stay tuned.

1420: Tinne leads 2-0 and Belgium are almost there! After taking the first 11-8, Hutton has game ball in the second at 10-9 but after domiating the rally she tins a backhand crosscourt drop. Another error gives Tinne the chance and and Hutton lob which goes out means Belgium are just one game away...

1419: Wales have won the women's bronze medals! Emily Whitlock wins the decisive third rubber 9-11 11-6 11-7 11-7 on court 6 against Enora Villard to repeat their third-place finish of last year. 

1354: Lucy Turmel does indeed level this women's final up for England with a comfortable enough 11-8 11-7 11-2 victory over Marie Van Riet. So, it's s straight shootout: Tinne Gilis v Jasmine Hutton for the title. Will Belgium be only the fourth different nation to write their name on this trophy? Or will England win the women's title for a 41st time?

1337: As their world rankings suggested, world no.30 Lucy Turmel is having the better of Belgium Marie Van Riet (world no.202). The Englishwoman is 2/0 up as I type this, and if she completes victory the result will rest on Tinne Gilis v Jasmine Hutton.

On Court 6 to my right, Wales and France are locked at 1-1 in the women's bronze medal tete-a-tete. After respective victories for Tesni Murphy in four and Lauren Baltayan (whose 17th birthday is tomorrow) in three, a place on the podium comes down to Emily Whitlock v Enora Villard. 

1311: That is a big early blow by Belgium! Nele Gilis rattles through the fourth game in the first match of this women's final, aided by too many Kennedy errors and it's a 11-2 11-8 11-13 11-5 victory for the world no.4. The big yell of delight and hug that she gives coach Ronny Vlassaks indicates they know exactly how crucial that might be. Lucy Turmel v Marie Van Riet is next, then it'll be Jasmine Hutton v Tinne Gilis. Are Belgium on the verge of a first ever European title - becoming only the fourth nation ever to win it? 

1307: Scotland are men's Division 2 champions! Martin Ross, who is making his Scotland debut this week, is the man who brings it home for the Scots with a 11-7 11-2 11-4 win over Bendegúz Kamocsai which makes it 3-0. Both Scotland and Hungary return to Division 1 in 2025.

1253: That was an absolutely elite quality third game between Kennedy and Nele. Stunning accuracy, retrieval and athleticism from both ladies, but it's Gina who takes it 13-11 and England are back in it at 2-1 down in this first rubber of the women's final. To my right, Wales are 1-0 up in the women's bronze medal match against France through Tesni Murphy's four-game win over Marie Stephan.

1232: A lightning start from Nele Gilis in the opening women's final rubber. She blitzes through the first game 11-2 against Gina Kennedy, and although the second is tigher she wins it 11-8. Defending champions England are up against it here. To my left on court 1, Scotland are 2-0 up in the men's Division 2 final after Greg Lobban's 9-11 11-3 3-11 11-6 11-3 63-minute win over Hungary's Farkas Balasz - that following Alasdair Prott's straight games win earlier. It's looking good for the Scots (the non-playing members of the team are wearing kilts today!).

1200: High noon! It's time for the women's Division 1 final. Looking at the line-up, this opening no.1 string match between Nele Gils and Gina Kennedy seems absolutely critical to the outcome. Nele has a 7-4 advantage in the career head-to-head, but Gina has won two of their three encounters this year, including the most recent in the German Open final. Players are on court. This should be an absolute cracker! Wales v France in the women's bronze medal match is also under way on court 6 (live streaming available on the ESF YouTube channel).

1157: Germany are women's Division 2 champions! A five-game win for Saskia Beinhard over Finland's Emilia Soini was followed by Sharon Sinclair's straight-games triumph against Riina Koskinen. Beinhard tells me: "Getting back into Division 1 is very important. We were so happy yesterday that we knew we'd reached our goal by getting to the final. But winning today was the second most  important goal. I'm very happy with the win and the gold medal."

1150: Switzerland are men's bronze medal winners! Knowing that the Swiss only needed two games from the final rubber between Dimitri Steinmann and Emyr Evans, Stieinmann goes 2-1 down, but takes the fourth 11-5 and is greeted with a tumultuous roar from the hordes of spectators around court 6. What a week Steinmann has had. Switzerland takes European Team bronze for the second year in a row - and they won bronze at last year's WSF World Team Championships too. These are truly exciting times for Swiss squash.

1125: Elliott Morris Devred beats young Robin Gadola 12-10 11-4 11-2 (as you can see below, he was pretty pleased) so that makes the Dimitri Steinmann v Emyr Evans the men's bronze medal decider. As I glance over at court 6, the score is currently 1-1 in games. A 3-2 win for Evans won't be enough. He has to take these next two games to prevent Switzerland winning a second successive European bronze. Here's the match page. Over to my left, Sotland are 1-0 up on Hungary in the men's Division 2 final, and Germany 1-0 up on Finland in the women's. 

1055: Another eruption from the hordes behind court 6 as Yannick Wilhelmi closes out a 17-15 11-7 8-11 11-9 victory over Wales' Owain Taylor. That puts the Swiss 2-0 up in this bronze medal final (6-1 in games). A huge mountain to climb for the Welsh now.

1029: The Swiss crowd goes absolutely wild as Nicolas Mueller gives the host nation an early lead in the men's bronze medal play-off. The veteran comes through three tough games against Wales' Joel Makin 14-12 11-9 11-9. With Yannick Wilhelmi two games up on Owain Taylor on court 6, Switzerland appear to have one foot on the podium at this stage. 

Meantime, the Division 2 finals are just beginning. Men: Scotland v Hungary (Ct1). Women: Finland v Germany (Ct2).

0910: We have the line-ups for the women's final. It'll be Gina Kennedy v Nele Gilis; Lucy Turmel v Marie Van Riet then Jasmine Hutton v Tinne Gilis. That first match is going to be absolutely crucial. And no place in the team for SJ Perry. Meanwhile, play is under way on the side courts, with Wales v Switzerland men just about to begin in the men's bronze medal play-off.

0830: Guten morgen from the picturesque town of Uster in the Swiss canton of Zurich. It's finals day and, as I type, final preparations are being made to this tremendous and unique venue, Squash Arena - surely the only building in the world to share squash courts and a gigantic climbing wall!

Today's Division 1 finals are a repeat of last year's in Helsinki. Belgium have another chance to win their first ever women's European Team title. Once again, they face 40-time winners England, who have only ever lost this event twice, in 2019 (to France) and 2010 (to the Netherlands).

Today's running order for the women is 1-3-2. We don't yet have the team sheets, but it would seem likely that Tinne Gilis - whose defeat in last year's final was so crucial - will get the chance to bring home a cherished and historic victory for the Belgians. Standing in their way are Gina Kennedy (back to something like her best following health problems), Jasmine Hutton, Lucy Turmel and former world no.5 SJ Perry - although we await confirmation of the line-ups. The final starts at 1200.

Then at 1400 it's the men's Division 1 climax. Again, it's a repeat of last year's cross-Channel battle between England (who are bidding for a 44th title) and France, who last won the trophy in 2018. France's team is packed with experience although Victor Crouin lost to Dimitri Steinmann in the pool stage and was once again subdued in yesterday's semi-final against Joel Makin. The men's running order today is 3-1-4-2.

But before all that, play gets under way at 0900. In men's Division 2, Germany and Spain are playing for fifth place and Czech Republic v Ireland is a battle to avoid what in English is known as the wooden spoon. Both, sadly, are already relegated to Division 3 next season by virtue of finishing in the bottom two. Denmark and Poland are playing for seventh in Division 2. Netherlands seem certain to claim fifth position in women's Division 2 and should confirm that with a win against Romania this morning.

At 0930, we have the men's Division 1 bronze medal match between Wales and Switzerland on the glass court. You can watch live streaming of that one on the YouTube and Eurovision Sport links above. Are we excited? You bet we are!

Live blog: Mike Dale

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