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Franklin and Browne set for Jamaican test

Photograph by Akil SimmonsBragging rights: Browne, left, and Franklin will look to put on a show in their exhibition matches against Jamaican pair Binnie and Walters at the BSRA courts in Devonshire

Revenge will be the motivation for Bermuda’s Micah Franklin and Noah Browne when they renew acquaintances with Jamaican pair Christopher Binnie and Lewis Walters.

Franklin and Browne will play exhibition matches against Binnie, the No 1 Caribbean player and 77th in the world, and Walters tomorrow and Friday at the Bermuda Squash Racquets Association in Devonshire.

Binnie beat Walters in the final of this month’s Caribbean Area Squash Association Senior Championships in Trinidad and Tobago — a competition in which Bermuda won the men’s team event.

Both Bermuda players were knocked out in the quarter-finals, with Franklin losing to Binnie and Browne suffering defeat to Walters.

Patrick Foster, the BSRA director of squash, said the idea for the games was hatched during the championships and expects some exciting battles between the players.

“When we were in Trinidad we made a deal with Jamaica and they wanted to visit Bermuda,” Foster said. “I guess it was fortunate we were all in the same place at the same time.

“It’s a good opportunity for our members to see our top players in action, as well as these two Jamaican boys who are both ranked in the world’s top hundred.

“I know Micah and Noah would love to play well in front of everyone and get some wins.”

Franklin, 23, is presently 161st in the men’s Professional Squash Association world rankings while 22-year-old Browne is further down in 287th position. Walters, 28, is ranked 118th.

In tomorrow’s opening game Brown plays Binnie before Franklin takes on Walters, with Brown facing Walters and Franklin meeting Binnie in Friday’s round of games. Both evening’s matches start at 7pm.

“We want to show off Micah and Noah here on the island as they are playing so well,” Foster added. “They are on the professional circuit and will both be jetting out after the event, with Noah off to Texas while Micah’s got events in Canada at the end of next month.

Binnie, 27, beat Walters to continue his victorious streak with a record seventh men’s title at the Caribbean Championships in an epic encounter, 12-10, 7-11, 11-4, 9-11, 11-7.

It was Binnie’s sixth consecutive title and increased his career tally to seven overall.

“Chris was been the strongest player in the Caribbean for several years and has been winning Caribbean Championships, and has had some great results on the world tour,” Foster added.

“Lewis is an English-born player but has Jamaican parents and has been representing the country for the past few years.

“They are both really good, experienced players and all four are at the beginning of their careers. It will be interesting to see them play off against each other.”

Tickets, including both nights, cost $150 for VIP seating and $50 for general seating. For more details call 292-6881.