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South Western Open 2022


$110,000 Women's South Western Open 2022, Houston Squash Club, Houston, Texas, USA, PSA World Tour Gold
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South Western Open 2022
Women's Draw
06 - 11 Sep
Texas, USA, $110k

08 Sep
09 Sep
 10 Sep
11 Sep

[1] Nouran Gohar (EGY)
11-4, 11-2, 11-3 (20m)
Ka Yi Lee (HKG)

Nouran Gohar
11-4, 11-6, 11-4 (35m)
Olivia Fiechter
Nouran Gohar
8-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-4, 11-4 (59m)
Rowan Elaraby
Nouran Gohar
12-10, 11-5, 11-7 (42m)
Nour El Tayeb
[6] Olivia Fiechter (USA)
7-11, 11-6, 11-4, 11-5 (37m)
[9/16] Sabrina Sobhy (USA)
[8] Emily Whitlock (WAL)
8-11, 11-5, 5-11, 11-6, 11-3 (60m)
[9/16] Sana Ibrahim (EGY)
Emily Whitlock
11-2, 11-7, 11-5 (37m)
Rowan Elaraby
[3] Rowan Elaraby (EGY)
7-11, 11-6, 11-4, 11-5 (37m)
[9/16] Mariam Metwally (EGY)
[4] Georgina Kennedy (ENG)
11-7, 11-0, 11-4 (30m)
[9/16] Jasmine Hutton (ENG)
Georgina Kennedy
11-9, 8-2 retired (16m)
Nour El Tayeb
Nour El Tayeb
11-8, 9-11, 12-10, 8-11, 11-6 (63m)
Amanda Sobhy
[7] Nour El Tayeb (EGY)
11-4, 11-5, 11-2 (22m)
[9/16] Olivia Clyne (USA)
[5] Salma Hany (EGY)
13-11, 9-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-9 (73m)
[9/16] Nadine Shahin (EGY)
Salma Hany
 8-11, 11-2, 11-7, 11-4 (42m)
Amanda Sobhy
[9/16] Hana Ramadan (EGY)
11-8, 11-5, 11-4 (30m)
[2] Amanda Sobhy (USA)


[1] Nouran Gohar (EGY) bye
Ka Yi Lee (HKG) bt [9/16] Tomato Ho (HKG) 11-7, 7-11, 2-11, 11-5, 11-6 (46m)
[9/16] Sabrina Sobhy (USA) bt Emilia Soini (FIN) 11-3, 11-6, 11-13, 11-1 (35m)
[6] Olivia Fiechter (USA) bye
[8] Emily Whitlock (WAL) bye
[9/16] Sana Ibrahim (EGY) bt Nour Aboulmakarim (EGY) 11-4, 11-8, 11-3 (28m)
[9/16] Mariam Metwally (EGY) bt Nicole Bunyan (CAN) 11-4, 8-11, 11-9, 5-11, 11-8 (57m)
[3] Rowan Elaraby (EGY) bye
[4] Georgina Kennedy (ENG) bye
[9/16] Jasmine Hutton (ENG) bt Lucy Beecroft (ENG) 11-9, 9-11, 11-6, 11-6 (45m)
[9/16] Olivia Clyne (USA) bt Ineta Mackevica (LAT) 11-8, 11-3, 11-4 (21m)
[7] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) bye
[5] Salma Hany (EGY) bye
[9/16] Nadine Shahin (EGY) bt Haley Mendez (USA) 7-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-7 (56m)
[9/16] Hana Ramadan (EGY) bt [WC] Fayrouz Aboelkheir (EGY) 11-6, 11-3, 11-8 (33m)
[2] Amanda Sobhy (USA) bye
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Gohar Beats Compatriot Nour El Tayeb To Claim The Inaugural South Western Women’s Open Title

Nouran Gohar with the trophy

World No.1 Nouran Gohar has claimed the inaugural South Western Women’s Open title in Houston after a straight games victory over compatriot Nour El Tayeb. The No.1 seed took a tight opening game before moving from strength to strength to win the PSA World Tour Gold event.

Both players made it through to the final after coming through tough semi-final encounters with Rowan Elaraby and Amanda Sobhy respectively. The finalists both had to go all the way to five games to defeat their spirited opponents.

The pair had met 14 times previously on the PSA World Tour, with Gohar holding a positive 9-5 advantage in the head-to-head record. The World No.1 came out firing in the opening game, hitting the ball at a blistering pace to restrict El Tayeb’s trademark attacking flair. Gohar earned herself two game balls at 10-8 and despite a spirited comeback from El Tayeb, took the lead 12-10.

World No.8, El Tayeb admitted that she still feels like she is making her way back after returning to the tour just 10 months ago. She looked to be feeling the effects of yesterday’s semi-final against Amanda Sobhy as the physicality of the older Egyptian faded in the second game. El Tayeb started to make unnecessary errors which only spurred her opponent on further.

Nouran Gohar & Nour El Tayeb in action

After securing the second game 11-5 to place one hand on the trophy, Gohar was relentless in her pursuit of the title. Her hitting power increased as well as her accuracy, making life extremely difficult for El Tayeb in all areas of the court. Gohar set herself up with four match balls at 10-6 and converted at the second time of asking to seal the game 11-7 and win her first title of the season and eighth title in 12 months.

Gohar had this to say after claiming the first title of her season:

“Nour has been an inspiration, I don’t think anyone could do what she did. She’s a very tough opponent, I’m very happy that she’s back on tour. It’s always enjoyable against Nour, I always feel like I’m the underdog so it takes the nerves away but it has been a great week of squash and I’ve felt at home this week here in Houston. I’m so grateful for the support so thank you so much.

“I’m just enjoying it right now, everything in life moves too quickly so I’m just trying to enjoy the good moments. Thank you to Jahanzeb [tournament promoter] for putting the tournament on, not everyone can sort a Gold event in such a short space of time. I want to thank all my team, my coach, friends and family, Tecnifibre, Red Bull and all my fitness coaches.”

Action from the PSA World Tour quickly moves on to the Bronze-level Open de France de Squash 2022, which begins on September 12th, which is followed by the Platinum-level CIB Egyptian Open at the Pyramids of Giza, which begins on September 19th.
El Tayeb Downs No.2 Seed Sobhy To Join Gohar In South Western Women’s Open Final

Nour El Tayeb

World No.8 Nour El Tayeb continued her impressive start to the season as she defeated USA No.1 Amanda Sobhy to progress to the South Western Women’s Open Gold event final where she will face World No.1 Nouran Gohar for the title.

Recent CIB Zed Open winner Nour El Tayeb progressed through to the semi-finals after England’s Georgina Kennedy was forced to withdraw in the second game of their encounter with a hamstring injury. El Tayeb looked sharp and focused from the outset of the match and started to fire the ball into the front corners with ease to trouble her American opponent.

Spurred on by the home crowd, Sobhy responded by matching El Tayeb’s pace and started to implement her own short game to test the movement of the No.7 seed. Sobhy took the second game 11-9 to level the match. The quality between the two players continued throughout the entire match and as the points became more crucial, the quality only increased. El Tayeb clinched a nail-biting third game 12-10 to place one foot in the final.

Despite Sobhy levelling at 2-2, it was clear that the efforts from the fourth game had taken their toll on the No.2 seed and El Tayeb was able to find the space on the court better in the final game to take it 11-6 and secure her place in successive finals after 63 minutes.

“I’m very grateful to be in successive finals, I guess I worked hard over the last period to come back and compete at this level against one of the best in the world in Amanda,” said El Tayeb.

“Most of the time I still feel like I’m on the comeback, I feel like the other players treat me like a mother so it gives me an edge and confidence. I’ve gone through a hard period, being pregnant and having a baby, feel I have lies to lose now but it’s just great to be back at this level.

“I still feel like I’m coming up the rankings again, I’m very happy with how it’s been going since I came back in December and it feels great to be back in another final. Tomorrow, I have Nouran in the final and I think she has been in every final since I’ve been back, other people change but she seems to be the one always in the final and that’s a credit to her character and her squash. But I want to be testing myself against the top 4/5 players in the world and tomorrow’s another day and I hope I can do just as well.”​

El Tayeb’s opponent in tomorrow’s final will be World No.1 and No.1 seed Nouran Gohar who did not have it all her own way as she overcame compatriot Rowan Elaraby in a feisty affair.

Gohar held a 4-0 lead in the head-to-head record with Elaraby but the younger Egyptian showed no signs of nerves in the opening game against ‘The Termiantor’, hitting the ball at a blistering pace to pin Gohar deep in the back corners before taking the ball in short with great accuracy. Elaraby stormed through to take the opening game 11-8 and looked determined for more.

Nouran Gohar

Despite Gohar taking the second game, World No.7 Elaraby continued to pummel the back corners with tremendous power, making it very difficult for Gohar to impose her own aggressive style on the match. After many tense rallies, it was Elaraby who held her nerve, closing the game out 12-10 despite numerous interactions with the referee to take a 2-1 lead and silence the Houston crowd.

Gohar showed just why she is at the top of the world rankings in the fourth and fifth games, capitalising on a physically fading Elaraby. The World No.1 moved from strength to strength and it wasn’t long before she was looking ahead to her 33rd PSA World Tour final, winning the final two games both 11-4.

“It was a very tough match obviously, Rowan is such a talented player but you have to find a way and all credit to her, she played so well and I had to keep digging in but I felt like I found my range at the end and just very pleased to get through,” said Gohar after her win.

“Sometimes it’s not always a good thing to be winning lots go matches 3-0. With my coach, we talk about how some days I won’t be able to beat everyone 3-0 and I need to be prepared. I’m actually quite glad that I had a match like this before the final to really mentally prepare me.

“I’ve watched Amanda [Sobhy] and Nour [El Tayeb] play World Juniors together and have been on tour for so long but they’re awesome players and I’m really looking forward to playing either of them tomorrow.”

The all-Egyptian South Western Women’s Open final will take place tomorrow, being shown live on SQUASHTV from 13:00 (GMT-5).

For more information on the event, visit the tournament website or follow PSA Events on 
Twitter or Facebook, InstagramYouTube, TikTok and SQUASHTV.
USA No.1 Sobhy The Sole Survivor As Egyptians Dominate In Houston

Amanda Sobhy in action
USA No.1 Amanda Sobhy

The South Western Women’s Open semi-finalists have been decided with USA No.1 Amanda Sobhy the only non-Egyptian to make the final four in the PSA Gold event taking place at the Houston Squash Club.

Home favourite Sobhy, took to the court in the final match of the day against dangerous Egyptian Salma Hany, who came out firing in the opening game, firing the ball in short with great accuracy to take the first game 11-8. Sobhy responded in perfect fashion in the second game and dominated proceedings, taking the ball early and capitalising on excellent length hitting. It wasn’t long before Sobhy was level at 1-1, winning 11-2.

There was nothing between the pair as the score reached 5-5 in the third game, but that’s when Sobhy stepped up a gear and regained control of the match, mixing up the paces and using great deception to stop and start the movement of Hany. After sealing the third game 11-7, Sobhy looked to have settled into her clinical rhythm in the fourth game and helped by errors from Hany booked her semi-final place in 42 minutes.

“It’s good to be in the semis, that was a tough match,” said Sobhy.

“Salma had a tough one yesterday, but I knew she would come out fighting in the first game but I adapted after the first and started to feel better with my movement but it’s never easy and I’m just looking forward to a battle with Nour [El Tayeb] tomorrow.

“We’ve been playing since we were 15, there’s been ups and downs. She’s beaten me, I’ve beaten her so we go back and forth but I think we enjoy playing against each other. It’s good that she’s back on tour and I’m really looking forward to playing against her tomorrow.”

Sobhy’s opponent in the semi-final will be in-form Egyptian Nour El Tayeb who progressed to the final four after England’s Georgina Kennedy retired injured in the second game of the highly anticipated encounter. El Tayeb took a competitive first game 11-9 and looked in fine form in the second game leading 8-2. It was clear in game two that Kennedy was not moving at her best and was forced to withdraw with a hamstring injury.

World No.1 Nouran Gohar was in her usual clinical zone as she despatched USA No.2 Olivia Fiechter in straight games to move into her first semi-final of the season. Gohar’s hard-hitting style gave Fiechter no opportunity to control the T and seemed to always be on the defensive side of play. The No.1 seed moved from strength to strength and after 35 minutes booked her place in the last four to set up an all-Egyptian affair with Rowan Elaraby.

Emily Whitlock (WAL) v Rowan Elaraby (EGY) S

Elaraby currently sits at her highest ranking of World No.7 and showed just how dangerous she can be as she defeated a resilient Emily Whitlock 3-0. The 22-year-old had beaten Whitlock previously on the PSA World Tour, back in 2018 and repeated the result to move into tomorrow’s semi-finals.

Elaraby possesses great touch in the front two corners and made full use of that on the all glass court in Houston. Pushing and pulling the Welshwoman into several difficult positions which became tiresome for her. After storming the first game 11-2, the Egyptian showed no signs of slowing down as her crisp length hitting only got better, which set up more attacking opportunities, which she took full advantage of.

Elaraby took the second and third games 11-7, 11-5 to take the match in 37 minutes. Her opponent in the semi-finals will be compatriot and World No.1 Nouran Gohar. The pair have met four times previously on tour and Elaraby is yet to score a win against ‘The Terminator’ but will be looking to continue her impressive start to the new season regardless.

Semi-final action from the South Western Women’s Open will take place tomorrow with both matches being shown live on SQUASHTV from 13:00 (GMT-5).

For more information on the event, visit the tournament website or follow PSA Events on 
Twitter or Facebook, InstagramYouTube, TikTok and SQUASHTV.
All Seeds Progress To South Western Women’s Open Quarter Finals

Salma Hany (EGY) v Nadine Shahin (EGY)

All the top eight seeds have progressed through to the South Western Women’s Open quarter finals as the bottom half last 16 encounters were concluded on day three in Houston.

The match of the day was an entertaining all-Egyptian clash in which World No.9 Salma Hany defeated a determined Nadine Shahin in a 73-minute five-game thriller. Hany showcased her excellent touch at the front of the court on many occasions and continued to move her compatriot into the front two corners throughout the match to earn herself a 2-1 lead.

Shahin’s fighting spirit was clear to see as she continued to chase down every ball and impose her hard-hitting game on the match. The 25-year-old used her tremendous power to blast the ball into the back corners and restrict the attacking opportunities of Hany and forced a fifth game.

After a long and tense fifth game, the higher seeded Hany earned two match balls at 10-8 and despite one being saved by Shahin, Hany closed out the match 11-9 with a superb backhand drop to book her place in the quarter finals. The No.5 seed had this to say after her win:

“Nadine is such a fighter, we played last week, I knew it was going to be tough today and I’m really proud to win this one. Some days you just have to dig in and fight, it got a little bit scrappy towards the end but I’m just really proud of myself for coming through this one.

“I had a good start last week, getting to the final of the Zed Open but I’m just trying to take it match by match and I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”

Hany’s quarter final opponent will be USA No.1 Amanda Sobhy after the No.2 seed despatched Egypt’s Hana Ramadan in straight games in the day’s final match. Sobhy was feeding off the pace that Ramadan was playing at and was able to pick off the loose drives of the Egyptian to grab the match by the scruff of the neck early on.

Sobhy’s dominance continued as she started to look more and more comfortable on the Houston Squash Club glass court. Her use of height was creating numerous attacking opportunities, which she was grasping with both hands. The USA No.1 couldn’t have asked for a better start to her 2022/23 season and sealed the win in confident style winning 11-8, 11-5, 11-4 in 30 minutes.

No.4 seed Georgina Kennedy put on a clinical display to defeat compatriot Jasmine Hutton in an all-English affair at the Houston Squash Club. Hutton beat Lucy Beecroft in round one but struggled to find a way into the match against the relentless Kennedy. The pace was fast throughout the match which suited the World No.10 perfectly.

Georgina Kennedy in action

Kennedy went from strength to strength as the match went on and showed just how clinical and severe she can be, taking the final two games 11-0, 11-4 to move into the last eight.

“The first match of the new season is always stressful, obviously I had a really good season last season and I’m looking to build on that,” said Kennedy after her victory.

“I’d like to continue the way I was playing last season and make the back end of these kinds of events and play the squash I know that I can and execute it against the top players and give it my best shot whilst enjoying everything.”

Egypt’s Nour El Tayeb started the new season in the perfect way last week, by winning the CIB Zed Open Bronze event in Cairo. She continued that form in her opening match of the tournament as she wasted no time in defeating USA’s Olivia Clyne in just 22 minutes.

The sheer skill and accuracy of El Tayeb was too much for Clyne to handle and the American struggled to find a way to disturb the silky-smooth rhythm that the Egyptian had adopted. El Tayeb used her deception to constantly stop and start the usually excellent movement of Clyne which created space for the Egyptian to attack. With that win, she’s set up a mouth-watering clash with No.4 seed Georgina Kennedy for a place in the semi-finals.

For more information on the event, visit the tournament website or follow PSA Events on 
Twitter or Facebook, InstagramYouTube, TikTok and SQUASHTV.
Top Half Seeds Progress To South Western Women’s Open Quarter Finals On Day Two In Houston

Nouran Gohar in action
Nouran Gohar

As the top seeds entered the South Western Women’s Open draw, all four higher seeded players progressed through to the quarter finals on day two in Houston.

World No.1 Nouran Gohar was first in action and wasted no time as she stormed past her surprise round two opponent, Ka Yi Lee from Hong Kong. With 43 places separating the two in the PSA rankings, the task couldn’t be tougher for Yi Lee who struggled to gather any momentum against the World No.1 and after just 20 minutes, Gohar advanced.

“It’s always good to have a fresh start and a good start Ina. Tournament. It’s always good to start with a good performance and a good win like this to give you that confidence” said Gohar.

“My off-season was both quite intense and relaxing. In the past, I would only take maybe two weeks off but last season I played a lot of matches so I took more time off than usual and I had a slight shoulder injury so I took some time to rehab that. But then the second part was tough training with Rod [Martin] in Connecticut, which was intense.”

Gohar’s opponent in the quarter finals will be USA’s No.6 seed Olivia Fiechter, who was victorious in the all-American encounter with Sabrina Sobhy. Fiechter was without a win against Sobhy in four attempts on the PSA World Tour heading into the match but showed no signs of nerves as she took the opening game 11-8.

Olivia Fiechter in action

Fiechter used great hold and deception throughout the match and did a great job of retaining the T, keeping her compatriot behind her for most of the match. Sobhy held a four-point advantage in the second game at 8-4 but Fiechter battled back to take an all-important 2-0 lead, winning 12-10. The end came quickly for the younger American as the no.6 seed moved from strength to strength and secured her place in the last eight, winning 11-3 in the final game.

The match of the day came from No.8 seed Emily Whitlock and dangerous Egyptian Sana Ibrahim as they played out an entertaining five-game battle for the Houston crowd, which went the way of the Welsh No.2.

After falling behind twice in the match, Emily Whitlock relied on her trademark accuracy at the front of the court partnered with her excellent use of height, exposing the technique of her younger opponent. Ibrahim displayed great fight and determination to keep fighting in every rally but looked to have run out of ideas in the crucial fourth and fifth games as Whitlock took them 11-6, 11-3 to advance.

No.3 seed Rowan Elaraby closed out day two with a victory over compatriot Mariam Metwally to complete the top half quarter final draw. Metwally started the better of the two and came out firing in the opening game, attacking both the front corners with purpose and took the game 11-7.

Rowan Elaraby in action

It wasn’t long before the World No.7 clicked into gear and found her length to pin Metwally in the back corners and showcase her own attacking capabilities. Elaraby’s growing confidence was clear to see as she progressed through the match and picked off the loose shots being played by her fellow Egyptian. Elaraby closed out the final three games 11-6, 11-4, 11-5 to book her place in her first quarter final of the new season.

For more information on the event, visit the tournament website or follow PSA Events on 
Twitter or Facebook, InstagramYouTube, TikTok and SQUASHTV.
Ka Yi Lee Claims Only Upset On Day One As The South Western Open Gets In Houston

Ka Yi Lee in action
Ka Yi Lee in action

Hong Kong’s Ka Yi Lee claimed the only upset on day one at the inaugural South Western Women’s Open as seven other players made their way through to round two at the PSA Gold event in Houston, USA.

Yi Lee defeated compatriot and 9/16 seed Tomato Ho in an entertaining five-game battle to secure her place in the second round. The World No.44 is ranked nine places higher than her opponent and trailed 2-1 before finding the front two corners with great accuracy to take the next two games 11-5, 11-6 to progress. She will face a tough test tomorrow as she comes up against No.1 seed and World No.1 Nouran Gohar for a place in the final eight.

American duo Olivia Clyne and Sabrina Sobhy safely made their way through to round two in the event after beating Finland’s Emilia Soini and Latvia’s Ineta Mackevica respectively. Clyne wasted no time as she stormed to victory in just 21 minutes. Her changes of pace and angles proved to be too much for Mackevica who struggled to find the accuracy to trouble the American World No.21. Sobhy was in fine form in the opening match of her season and despite losing the third game, she returned to her accurate and fast-paced game to close the fourth game out 11-1.

Sabrina Sobhy in action

“It’s always nerve-racking, the first match of any PSA and the first of the season especially, you feel a little off because you haven’t done it in a few months,” said Sobhy after her win.

“She was attacking a little bit more and I felt like I lost my length. The court is a little tricky but once you get into the match it can be quite quick. She is a tricky player and has a lot of good short shots and flicks, so she had me on a lot of those and the nerves started to pile up and my accuracy left me. But I was happy to get stuck into it in the fourth and win.”

World No.29 Jasmine Hutton won an all-English encounter against Lucy Beecroft to book her second-round place. The match was a repeat of this year’s British National Championships final which was also won by Hutton. The match oozed quality from the outset with both players utilising all four corners of the court at different paces.

Jasmine Hutton in action

With the score level at 1-1, it was Hutton who found the better length of the two and used that to set up several attacking opportunities, which she took full advantage of. Hutton took the third and fourth games both 11-6 to take the match. Another English opponent awaits Hutton in the next round, in the form of Commonwealth Gold medalist and No.4 seed Georgina Kennedy.

“I’m very happy to start my season with a win,” said Hutton.

“It’s different tactics against Gina [Kennedy], you know it’s going to be really physical. Against Lucy, you know you will be retrieving a lot because she attacks a lot and with Gina, it will be more rhythmical with longer rallies but I’m just looking forward to going for it.”

Round one also saw three Egyptian winners as Sana Ibrahim, Mariam Metwally and Hana Ramadan all scored victories to earn a second round place. Ibrahim and Ramadan needed just three games to overcome compatriots Nour Aboulmakarim and Fayrouz Aboelkheir to move into the last 16. Whereas Metwally had to battle hard to defeat Canada’s Nicole Bunyan in a five-game thriller to set up an all-Egyptian clash with No.3 seed Rowan Elaraby.

The action continues from the South Western Women’s Open tomorrow as the four top half matches take place and will be shown live on SQUASHTV from 16:30 (GMT-5).

For more information on the event, visit the tournament website or follow PSA Events on 
Twitter or Facebook, InstagramYouTube, TikTok and SQUASHTV.