Egypt’s Shehab Essam captured the second PSA World Tour title of his
career after recovering from 2-1 down to defeat compatriot Karim El
Hammamy in the Arab Federation Open, PSA M10 tournament in Tanta,
Both players had battled through a 32-man draw to secure their final
berths, with Essam eventually taking out top seed Mohamed Reda in
the last four in a thrilling five-game battle. El Hammamy, the 2013
World Junior Champion, was also in inspired form in the semi-final,
and axed second seed Mazen Gamal to set up a a deciding clash with
The match was a close affair, with neither player giving the other
much breathing space as a series of highly-contested and
fiercely-fought points played out in front of an enraptured crowd at
the Tanta Sporting Club.
It was World No.114 Essam who finally made the breakthrough in the
first game as he struck up a one-game advantage after sneaking ahead
to 11-9, before conceding the next two by similarly narrow margins
to hand the initiative to El Hammamy, who was appearing in his
maiden PSA World Tour final.
The pressure soon told though as Essam continued to wear his
opponent down and, after winning the fourth game, the 20-year-old
led the charge as both combatants fought tooth and nail for
superiority in a dramatic deciding fifth game. Once again, there was
little between the pair, but Essam held his nerve to force the
victory over the line, sealing an 11-9, 9-11, 9-11, 11-8, 11-9
triumph which sees him claim his first PSA M10 crown.
With the battle for the 2016 Arab Federation Open title
intensifying, the semi finals of the M10 event saw two entertaining
all-Egyptian battles, with the crowd treated to yet more sublime
squash as Shehab Essam and Karim El Hammamy progressed on home soil.
20-year-old Essam felled number one seed Mohamed Reda in an epic
five-game thriller to stay in with a chance of capturing his second
PSA World Tour title. The match ebbed and flowed, with Essam going
2-0 up, before a spirited comeback from World No.44 Reda saw the
match taken to a deciding fifth game.
Essam kept his composure though to clinch it with a 13-11, 11-7,
1-11, 2-11, 11-6 margin of victory – a stunning win considering he
is ranked 70 places below Reda in the World Rankings.
The second semi final also saw a surprise result, with 2013 World
Junior Champion Karim El Hammamy getting the better of compatriot
Mazen Gamal. Despite dropping a game in the third, El Hammamy was in
control as he went on to take the match in four to ensure that he
will take on Essam for the crown.
There will be six Egyptian representatives in the quarter-final of
the Arab Federation Open, PSA M10 tournament after an exciting
second day of main draw action at the Tanta Sporting Club in Egypt.
World No.76 Mazen Gamal moved through to the last eight after he
overcame South African qualifier Mostafa Asal. Both players took a
game each in the early stages, before Gamal gradually asserted
himself on the match, and the 30-year-old’s experience eventually
told as he wrapped up an 11-3, 10-12, 11-6, 11-9 victory in a
hard-fought 65 minute encounter.
Up next for Gamal is a fixture with Pakistan’s Asim Khan, who came
through a brutal five-game meeting with qualifier Hussein Emam to
reach the quarter-final stage.
Top seed Mohamed Reda joins Gamal in the last eight thanks to a
routine win over Omar Bahgat. Reda completed the win in straight
games and takes on Jordan’s Ahmad Al-Saraj for a place in the
Meanwhile, 20-year-old Karim El Hammamy, the 2013 World Junior
Champion, eased by Nigeria’s Adewale Amao with a 3-0 win and will go
up against compatriot Saadeldin Abouaish after he defeated Ahmed
Egyptian duo Shehab Essam and Mostafa Montaser will go-head-to-head
in the other quarter-final fixture, after they overcame Husham
Abdulkareem Sabeh and wildcard Karim Magdy, respectively.
Number one seed Mohamed Reda eased into the second round of the Arab
Federation Open, PSA M10 tournament after a comfortable 3-0 victory
over Kuwait’s Ahmad Al-Mudhaf on the first day of main draw action.
Reda was in rampant form throughout the 40-minute encounter and
surged to the win in straight games to secure his second round
The World No.48 will line up against fellow Egyptian Omar Bahgat for
a place in the quarter-final after he saw off Shadi ElShirbini 3-0.
In-form Egyptian Mazen Gamal, who won the Grand Sport Armenia 2nd
Challenger 5 earlier on in the month, defeated Mohamed Saeed in his
first round fixture, and he will take on South African qualifier
Mostafa Asal in round two after he rose to a win over Ahmed Mohamed.
Elsewhere, 2013 World Junior Champion Karim El Hammamy earned his
place in the next round thanks to a 3-1 win over Ziad Sakr. The
20-year-old’s reward is a meeting with Adewale Amao, the Nigerian
World No.348 who dispatched compatriot Moses Durosinmi.
Shehab Essam was another of the home players to progress courtesy of
his victory against Abdallah Yaser, and he will take on Iraq’s
Husham Abdulkareem Sabeh next. Ahmad Al-Saraj, Asim Khan and Ahmed
Hussein will join Essam in the second round, while number eight seed
Muhd Asyraf Azan was the only seeded player to bow out in round one,
with a surprise defeat against wildcard Karim Magdy ending his title