THE SELECTION circus surrounding Australia's Commonwealth Games squash team claimed two victims but Cameron Pilley believes it is focused on winning gold.

It was revealed on Sunday that two Australian players, Zac Alexander (men's doubles) and Yamba's Donna Urquhart (women's singles), had been replaced.

Alexander was replaced by Matthew Karwalaski after a two-month legal fight ended up in the Court of Arbitration for Sport, who ruled in Karwalaski's favour.

Urquhart was replaced by the lesser-ranked Sarah Cardwell in the women's singles draw days after winning the Victorian Open, in which she beat Cardwell in the quarter-finals and world No.15 Rachel Grinham in the final.

Australian No.1-ranked male player, Pilley, could not directly comment on the drama, but said it was business as usual for the athletes.

"Once competition starts it is business as usual really," Pilley said. "Everyone in the team is very professional and when it comes to representing Australia, then hopefully all distractions will be pushed aside."

The 31-year-old was seeded fifth in the men's singles draw but was knocked out by eventual bronze medallist Peter Barker in the quarter-finals.

Pilley enjoyed a winning start to his doubles campaigns, winning both his men's and mixed doubles fixtures.

Pilley partnered David Palmer last night in their first men's doubles match against Jersey's Nick Taylor and Scott Gautier.

But it is his partnership with Kasey Brown in the mixed doubles that is Australia's best gold medal chance in squash. They played Guyana's Nicolette Fernandes and Alexander Arjoon.

He said the selection drama would not affect the players, with their focus set on performing to their best.

"No we just have to deal with it all," Pilley said.

"We are not playing for ourselves anymore as we are playing for Australia.

"If we all do our job and perform to the level we know we can, then the medal tally should take care of itself."

Urquhart and Lisa Camilleri kicked off their women's doubles campaign against Malta's Colette Sultana and Kimberley Borg Cauchi overnight.



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