Egypt’s Mazen Gamal successfully defended his Grand Sport Armenia
2nd Challenger 5, PSA M5 title with a win over England’s Nathan Lake
- in a repeat of the previous year’s final.
Gamal, whose last PSA World Tour title came at the 2015 edition of
this event, eased by Antonio de la Torre in round one, before
putting Vincent Droesbeke and Jaakko Vähämaa to the sword, setting
up a final meeting with Lake in the process after he had came
through a five-game battle with experienced Italian Stephane Galifi
to reach the showpiece finale.
The encounter was a closely-contested affair, with Gamal taking the
opener before a resilient Lake fought to victory on a tie-break in
It was then Gamal’s turn to score a tie-break win in the third with
a composed display enabling him to move Lake around the court
intelligently and open up opportunities for himself to attack.
Gamal’s superiority extended into the fifth game as he pulled away
to record an 11-8, 11-13, 12-10, 11-6 triumph which yielded his
eighth PSA World Tour title.
Armenian players Sergey Grigoryan and Ayk Avetisyan have exited the
Grand Sport Armenia 2nd Challenger 5, PSA M5 tournament after
suffering defeats to Stephane Galifi and Alireza Shameli,
respectively, in the opening round of qualifying.
Galifi, a former World No.40, used his wealth of experience to move
Grigoryan into all four corners of the court and rattled off a
number of winners in quick succession to seize the initiative in the
encounter and the 38-year-old soon rose to an 11-8, 11-6, 11-8
His opponent in the final round of qualifying will be Antonia de la
Torre who received a bye in the previous round.
Shameli, meanwhile, was also in dominant form against Avetisyan as
he cantered to the opening game for the loss of five points, before
fending off a fightback from his opponent in the second and third
games to close out the victory. He will go head-to-head with number
one qualifying seed Khaled Mostafa for a place in the main draw,
with Egypt’s Mostafa seeing off Ashkan Ettehadi to progress.
The closest match of the day saw Iraq’s Ahmed Al Kiremli defeat
Sajid Khan by the narrowest of margins. Al Kiremli took the lead on
two occasions, only to be pegged back by Khan both times as he
struggled to shake off the attentions of the man from Pakistan.
However, he managed to engineer a bit of breathing space for himself
in the decider to force the win over the line and set up a final
qualifying round fixture with Mohammad Jafari, the 28-year-old from
Iran who was the recipient of a bye in round one of qualifying.
Third qualifying seed Vincent Droesbeke is also through to the next
round after beating Sergey Keshishyan and he will take on Lewis
Doughty, with a main draw spot up for grabs.