Rough Ryding

MIKE RUTSEY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 7:03 AM ET

Graham Ryding felt like he was being double teamed.

It's one thing to lose your match before a hometown crowd but it's another to have to battle the officiating too.

"He was really bad," Ryding said of referee Richard Tucker after being upset last night by Spain's Borje Golan 11-5, 8-11, 11-8, 9-11, 11-7 in the opening round of the PACE Canadian Squash Classic. "It's too bad. He (Tucker) didn't have a feel for what was happening out there, what we could get to. It's basic stuff. He probably shouldn't be a ref at this level."

Ryding, ranked 19th in the world, was the fifth seed in the tournament while Golan, No. 47 in the world, advanced through the qualifiers.

Both players were upset by the calls and non-calls of Tucker, both players dropping their raquets to the ground in disgust at different times.

After Golan went ahead 10-7 in the final set on a point that Ryding felt should have been a let, he raised his hands in the air and exclaimed "there's so many missed calls today."

Ryding, who was set to play world No. 1, Jonathon Power of Montreal, tonight if he had won, said the officiating clearly affected him and took away from his concentration.

"It's tough," Ryding said. "Every sport has its officiating problems but it's tough when you're working hard and then especially at the end of the game and the game's close and the referee makes such a significantly bad call, it can really affect the match."

Ryding was looking for so much more this week.

"It's very disappointing," he said. "It's fun to play in front of such a big hometown crowd. It would have been nice to come back (tonight)."

Meanwhile, Power, the No. 1 seed in the tournament, breezed to an 11-1, 14-12, 11-7 victory over Davide Bianchetti of Italy.

Shahier Razik of Toronto, the other Canadian in the field lost in straight sets to Gregory Gaultier of France, the tournament's third seed who is ranked No. 12 in the world.

In an earlier featured match, world No. 2, Amr Shabana of Egypt, advanced with a decisive 11-7, 11-2, 13-11 victory over Laurens Anjema of the Netherlands.

The tournament continues tonight with the final set for Saturday.


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