ANOTHER national championship campaign, another national title.
Jesse Keegan’s run up the Australian junior squash rankings continues, after the budding squash star clinched the under 15s Australian Junior Championship title in a thrilling final against Alex Eustace 11-9 in the fifth and final set.
Facing off against the No.2 seed in the final, Keegan, the No.1 seed, initially found himself down two sets to one (12-10, 7-11, 2-11) but fought back to level the ledger with a 11-8 win in the fourth to force a deciding set.
Yet in the fifth set, still nothing could separate the two squash guns, with Keegan and Eustace locked at 8-all deep into the decider.
But it was Keegan who rose to the occasion.
The exciting talent reached match ball at 10-8 up, Eustace then won the next point but Keegan clinched it and won the deciding point to claim the final set 11-9 and win the title.
It’s the second Australian Junior Championship title Keegan has won after taking home the under 13s crown in 2010.
“After it got to two (sets) all, I wasn’t really nervous. It was more the adrenaline that got me through,” Keegan said.
“I was pretty excited at the end. I was expecting it to be close considering it was a final.
“I was pretty relieved.”
Keegan becomes the first NSW player to win the national under 15s junior title since Andrew Budd in 2002.
And he got their in style.
Keegan swept all before him in the championship’s preliminary rounds.
He didn’t even drop a set.
Keegan beat Trent Noble (11-3, 11-0, 11-2), Bruno Colantoni (11-8, 11-5, 11-5), Solayman Nowrozi (11-7, 13-11, 11-6) and then the championship’s fourth seed, Jacob Oates, 11-3, 11-0, 11-8 in the semi-final.
He was then made to work against Eustace, but it was Keegan who prevailed to take his record over the Queenslander to 3-2.
“He has only ever beaten me in the teams events, though,” Keegan said.
The 15-year-old now has his eyes set on a career on the professional tour.