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23rd-29th August

Ramy Celebrates Hong Kong Open Title, & World No1 Crown

It was after 90 action-packed minutes that Egypt's Ramy Ashour finally emerged victorious from the final of the $147,500 Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open - to not only win the fifth PSA Super Series squash championship of the year but also ensure his return to the top of the PSA world rankings next month.

The 22-year-old from Cairo knew that only a win would take him above Nick Matthew, the Englishman who wrested the world number one ranking from him in June - and who crashed out at the quarter-final stage in Hong Kong.

But it was Gregory Gaultier that took the opening honours in the final on the all-glass court at the Plaza Hollywood shopping centre in Kowloon. The fifth seed from France won the first game after a tie-break, then moved 5-1 ahead in the second.

The Frenchman, desperate to end his run of three successive defeats in the Hong Kong Open final, threw everything he could at the Egyptian. But Ashour took the next two games to open up a 2/1 lead.

Gaultier led 10-4 in the fourth - but Ashour saved five game balls to climb back to 9-10 before the 27-year-old from Aix-en-Provence took the game to draw level.

Gaultier led 6-4 and 7-6 in the decider, but on his first match ball Ashour delighted the crowd with a trademark backhand crosscourt volley straight into the nick - and victory was his by a 10-12, 11-9, 11-9, 9-11, 11-9 margin.

"Greg is a great player, he's such a great attacker you never know what he's going to do," Ashour said afterwards. "He sometimes plays in patches but he always comes back so you have to be alert and that's what I tried to do.

"That was a quality match - I'll watch it over and over again to see what I did right, what I did wrong, and learn from it.

"Now I'm world number one it's great, but we've still got lots of big tournaments coming up and my aim is to keep playing well and keep winning.

"But it's a great feeling to win here at last!"

The triumph takes Ashour's career PSA Tour title tally to 16 - one more than Matthew - yet, incredibly, is only the Egyptian's first Super Series trophy of the year.

Whilst the win will improve his world ranking, it does nothing to better Ashour's position in the latest PSA Super Series Rankings, which are headed by Matthew, on 365 points, with Ashour in second place, ahead of third-placed Englishman James Willstrop. The only change in the top eight is the two-place rise by England's Peter Barker (Matthew's quarter-final conqueror) to eighth place.

Latest 2010 PSA Super Series Rankings:

Ranking (Prev)
1 1 Nick Matthew (ENG) 365
2 2 Ramy Ashour (EGY) 335
3 3 James Willstrop (ENG) 230
4 4 Karim Darwish (EGY) 185
5 5 Gregory Gaultier (FRA) 180
6 6 Amr Shabana (EGY) 130
7 7 Thierry Lincou (FRA) 115
8 10 Peter Barker (ENG) 105
9 8 Wael El Hindi (EGY) 95
10 9 David Palmer (AUS) 85
11 11 Alister Walker (ENG) 70
12 11 Adrian Grant (ENG) 65
13 13 Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 50
14= 17 Laurens Jan Anjema (NED) 45
14= 17 Cameron Pilley (AUS) 45
14= 14 Olli Tuominen (FIN) 45
17 17 Julian Illingworth (USA) 40
18= 29 Daryl Selby (ENG) 35
18= 22 Ong Beng Hee (MAS) 35
18= 22 Saurav Ghosal (IND) 35
18= 22 Aamir Atlas Khan (PAK) 35
18= 22 Hisham Mohd Ashour (EGY) 35
18= 22 Tom Richards (ENG) 35
18= 14 Joey Barrington (ENG) 35
18= 14 Simon Rosner (GER) 35



Men's Draw



2009 Event Pages
2008 Event Pages
2007 Event Pages
2006 Event Pages


Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open 2010
Men's Draw $147k
Round One
Aug 24/25
Round Two
Aug 26

[1] Nick Matthew (ENG)
11-3, 11-9, 11-6 (29m)
[Q] Amr Swelim (ITA)

Nick Matthew
11-7, 12-10, 11-8 (49m)
Daryl Selby

Nick Matthew
3-11, 11-8, 11-5, 11-5 (55m)
Peter Barker

Peter Barker
11-7, 11-3, 11-5 (49m)
Gregory Gaultier

Gregory Gaultier
10-12, 11-9, 11-9, 9-11, 11-9 (90m)
Ramy Ashour

[9] Daryl Selby (ENG)
11-8, 11-6, 11-9 (63m)
Mohd Azlan Iskandar (MAS)
[8] Peter Barker (ENG)
11-4, 11-8, 11-3 (48m)
[Q] Julian Illingworth (USA)
Peter Barker
11-4, 11-8, 11-4 (51m)
Alister Walker
[15] Alister Walker (ENG)
11-6, 9-11, 11-6, 11-6 (50m)
Hisham Mohd Ashour (EGY)
[3] Amr Shabana (EGY)
14-12, 3-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-3 (53m)
Saurav Ghosal (IND)
Amr Shabana
11-6, 11-7, 11-8 (43m)
Laurens Jan Anjema
Amr Shabana
11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 11-8 (50m)
Gregory Gaultier
[12] Laurens Jan Anjema (NED)
13-11, 11-9, 3-11, 11-4 (76m)
Omar Mosaad (EGY)
[5] Gregory Gaultier (FRA)
11-8, 11-3, 11-6 (38m)
[Q] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS)
Gregory Gaultier
11-5, 11-7, 11-4 (43m)
Farhan Mehboob
[13] Adrian Grant (ENG)
11-9, 13-11, 11-9 (44m)
[Q] Farhan Mehboob (PAK)
[10] David Palmer (AUS)
11-2, 11-5, 11-4 (35m)
Olli Tuominen (FIN)
David Palmer
11-7, 4-11, 11-7, 11-9 (69m)
Thierry Lincou
Thierry Lincou
11-9, 11-3, 11-9 (40m)
Karim Darwish

Karim Darwish
11-5, 1-11, 11-9, 11-7 (51m)
Ramy Ashour

Dick Lau (HKG)
11-7, 11-2, 11-7 (34m)
[7] Thierry Lincou (FRA)
Ong Beng Hee (MAS)
11-8, 11-7, 14-12 (62m)
[16] Cameron Pilley (AUS)
Cameron Pilley
11-5, 7-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-6 (68m)
Karim Darwish
[Q] Aaron Frankcomb (AUS)
11-6, 11-3, 11-3 (28m)
[4] Karim Darwish (EGY)
[Q] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY)
11-5, 9-11, 11-3, 11-7 (65m)
[11] Wael El Hindi (EGY)
Wael El Hindi
11-7, 11-2, 4-11, 11-1 (50m)
James Willstrop
James Willstrop
11-5, 11-8, 11-9 (41m)
Ramy Ashour
Aamir Atlas Khan (PAK)
11-2, 11-1, 11-3 (23m)
[6] James Willstrop (ENG)

[Q] Tom Richards (ENG)
11-8, 11-8, 12-10 (45m)
[14] Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY)

Mohamed El Shorbagy
11-2, 11-8, 11-4 (30m)
Ramy Ashour
[Q] Mohammed Abbas (EGY)
11-9, 11-3, 11-7 (28m)
[2] Ramy Ashour (EGY)


Qualifying finals:
Tom Richards (ENG) bt Muhd Asyraf Azan (MAS) 12-10, 9-11, 11-8, 11-8 (60m)
Aaron Frankcomb (AUS) bt Max Lee (HKG) 11-4, 5-11, 11-8, 6-11, 11-8 (93m)
Julian Illingworth (USA) bt Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) 11-8, 11-5, 6-11, 12-10 (73m)
Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt Nicolas Mueller (SUI) 11-9, 5-11, 12-10, 5-11, 11-9 (86m)
Amr Swelim (ITA) bt Stephen Coppinger (RSA) 12-10, 14-16, 11-3, 11-7 (63m)
Farhan Mehboob (PAK) bt Alan Clyne (SCO) 7-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-6 (40m)
Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) bt Siddharth Suchde (IND) 11-5, 11-3, 11-8 (51m)
Mohammed Abbas (EGY) bt Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY) 11-7, 11-2, 11-4 (32m)

1st qualifying round:
Tom Richards (ENG) bt Fung Ngo Long (HKG) 11-6, 11-0, 11-6 (21m)
Muhd Asyraf Azan (MAS) bt Choy Kit Lun (HKG) 11-6, 11-6, 11-8 (19m)
Aaron Frankcomb (AUS) bt Anson Kwong (HKG) 11-5, 12-10, 11-4 (37m)
Max Lee (HKG) bt Lo Cheuk-Hin (HKG) 11-7, 11-6, 11-0 (17m)
Julian Illingworth (USA) bt Leo Au (HKG) 11-5, 11-8, 5-11, 11-6 (39m)
Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) bt Clinton Leeuw (RSA) 11-4, 11-4, 12-10 (36m)
Nicolas Mueller (SUI) bt Yip Tsz Fung (HKG) 11-4, 11-4, 11-4 (22m)
Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt Ho Tze Ho (HKG) 11-5, 11-6, 11-3 (21m)
Amr Swelim (ITA) bt Kamran Khan (MAS) 13-11, 11-7, 11-9 (60m)
Stephen Coppinger (RSA) bt Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) 11-9, 11-7, 10-12, 11-6 (48m)
Alan Clyne (SCO) bt Matthew Karwalski (AUS) 1! 1-9, 11-7, 8-11, 9-11, 13-11 (72m)
Farhan Mehboob (PAK) bt Hon Fung Wong (HKG) 11-2, 7-11, 11-9, 11-6 (25m)
Siddharth Suchde (IND) bt Gilly Lane (USA) 6-11, 11-4, 11-7, 11-8 (66m)
Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) bt Yeung Ho Wai (HKG) 11-4, 11-3, 11-7 (28m)
Mohammed Abbas (EGY) bt Cheuk Yan Tang (HKG) 11-4, 11-4, 11-6 (19m)
Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY) bt Christopher Gordon (USA) 11-7, 11-9, 7-11, 9-11, 11-3 (52m)


Gaultier & Ashour To Contest Hong Kong Open Final

Ramy Ashour is one step away from regaining his world number one ranking after beating fellow Egyptian Karim Darwish in the semi-finals of the Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open.

But the 22-year-old from Cairo will have to beat French rival Gregory Gaultier in tomorrow's final of the $147,500 PSA World Tour squash event, the fifth PSA Super Series championship of the year, in order to reclaim the pole position he lost to England's Nick Matthew in June.

Fifth seed Gaultier reached the final for the fourth year in a row after beating England's Peter Barker 11-7, 11-3, 11-5 in 49 minutes. It was the eighth seed from London who dashed England team-mate Matthew's hopes of a sixth successive Tour title in Friday's quarter-finals - in his first ever victory over England's first world number one for six years.

Gregory, who also topped the world rankings briefly before plummeting to No6 in just four months, is celebrating his 39th PSA Tour final - and will be hoping to make up for finishing as runner-up for the past three years.

After winning the first game of his semi-final, No2 seed Ramy Ashour only managed a single point in the second as Karim Darwish looked set to repeat his shock win over the Egyptian number one in May's Sky Open in the pair's home town of Cairo.

But Ramy, desperate to win his first Super Series title of the year, regained control before closing out his 11-5, 1-11, 11-9, 11-7 win after 51 minutes.

"It's great to be back in the final," Ashour, runner-up in 2006, said afterwards. "I was very tense, very tense, but my brother (Hisham) gave me some great advice - sometimes he gives me too much, too fast, but I remember it!

"Darwish played so well today, hitting so many nicks, I had to keep pushing myself," added the exuberant world No2, now in his 27th Tour final.

"I had too much energy, it overwhelmed me, I just had to push myself, push myself to overcome it."

Defending Champion & World No1 Both Exit In Hong Kong

It was a bad day for favourites in the Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open when both Nick Matthew, the world number one and top seed, and Amr Shabana, the title-holder, crashed out of the $147,500 PSA World Tour squash event, the fifth PSA Super Series championship of the year.

Matthew, the in-form Englishman who arrived in Hong Kong fresh from winning five titles in a row on the PSA Tour, faced England team-mate Peter Barker, the London left-hander who had lost their previous eight encounters.

But after dropping the first game, Barker raised his game to new heights to come storming back to win the next three and claim a career-best 3-11, 11-8, 11-5, 11-5 victory. It was Barker's first match of the tournament on the Hong Kong Squash Centre's popular three-sided-glass-walled court - though Matthew was enjoying his third.

"He's had a couple of matches on this court already, while this is my first. It took me a while to get used to it," explained the eighth seed later. "I tried to keep telling myself to believe, to break it down, and towards the end to get one more point, one more point.

"I'm very good friends with Nick off court - you never like to see your friends lose even you play them - but I've been on the receiving end of a few beatings from Nick for a long time, so maybe today it was my turn.

"It's very special to beat the world number one, so I'm really pleased, obviously. The tournament's not over, but it's been a good week so far," added Barker, now in his first Super Series semi-final of the year after ending Matthew's 25-match unbeaten Tour run.

Matthew highlighted an injury which caused him to take a three-minute break during the final game: "We had a collision at the start of the second game. It was accidental, but the pain in my ankle was really severe. I've had ligament damage there so often I don't think I have any ligaments left!

"I carried on, but as the match went on I didn't have any strength in my left leg and it got more and more painful. But I wasn't going to shake hands - I'll always carry on to the end.

"It's tough to take, losing after six months, especially when it's partly because your body lets you down. He may have beaten me anyway, who knows, but it's still tough to take.

"Pete's a great mate, I wish him well for the rest of the tournament."

The match that followed also saw fortunes reversed: In this case Gregory Gaultier had come away empty-handed in the previous three Hong Kong Open finals as Amr Shabana, the reigning world champion from Egypt, built up a sequence of five successive titles at the event from 2005.

But it was Gaultier's day today as the Frenchman delighted the crowd with a dazzling display of squash to end the Egyptian's 27-match-winning-run in Hong Kong, beating Shabana 11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 11-8 in 50 minutes.

Was it fourth time lucky, Gaultier was asked afterwards? "I don't think you can win matches like that with luck," said the 27-year-old from Aix-en-Provence. "But he's beaten me a lot of times so it's good to beat him here in Hong Kong at last, yes."

"He went for so many shots, and only at the end of the first did he really make any errors. I'd work hard to win a point and then he would win the next in two seconds. I tried to control the pace, but he changed it so well.

"We know each other so well and have such respect for each other that it's difficult to play each other. We know it's going to be fair."

Nick Matthew's shock departure leaves the door open for rival Ramy Ashour to reclaim the world number one ranking - but only if the Egyptian wins the title in Hong Kong! The 22-year-old No2 seed from Cairo certainly exhibited the credentials to achieve this as he despatched Matthew's England team-mate James Willstrop 11-5, 11-8, 11-9 in the last match of the day.

"It was a fast pace for both of us," said Ashour afterwards. "I went a bit too fast in the first, but he was a little bit backed up. He started getting better towards the end of that game and came out fighting in the second and I had to work hard to contain him.

"The third was very even, I just had to keep my focus, just keep playing and be as consistent as I could. You just do what you can do and see if you've won at the end.

"I've got no thoughts about getting back to number one. Yes it would be great, but my aim is just to do the maximum, even if I'd lost today but played to the maximum I wouldn't have been upset about it.

Ashour will now face compatriot Karim Darwish, the fourth seed who denied Thierry Lincou a second Hong Kong Open title by beating the 34-year-old Frenchman 11-9, 11-3, 11-9.

Darwish Battles Into Hong Kong Quarters

Former world number one Karim Darwish claimed his anticipated place in the quarter-finals of the Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open - but the fourth-seeded Egyptian was taken the full distance before overcoming Cameron Pilley in the second round of the $147,500 PSA World Tour squash event, the fifth PSA Super Series championship of the year, in Hong Kong.

Darwish went into the match boasting a 7/0 career head-to-head record over the tall Australian - but soon found himself 2/1 down as 16th seed Pilley imposed himself on the match.

The 27-year-old from New South Wales led 7-4 in the fourth - but Darwish called upon all his experience to recover the deficit before going on to claim a dramatic 11-5, 7-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-6 victory after 68 minutes.

Darwish, the Cairo-based 28-year-old who spent most of last year topping the world rankings, will now face French rival Thierry Lincou, also a former world No1, for a place in the semi-finals.

Lincou, the seventh seed, celebrated his 20th PSA Tour meeting with David Palmer since their first in 1999 by beating the 10th seed from Australia 11-7, 4-11, 11-7, 11-9 in 69 minutes - and edging ahead 11/9 in the pair's head-to-head tally.

The opening match of the day was an all-English clash between favourite Nick Matthew, the world number one hoping to notch up his sixth Tour title in a row in Hong Kong, and Daryl Selby, the ninth seed who made up for disappointment of a shock first round exit in the recent Australian Open by overcoming top-ranked Malaysian Mohd Azlan Iskandar in the opening round.

The England team-mates know each others' games inside out - and Matthew was relentless in the pursuit of his 11-7, 12-10, 11-8 win.

"Daryl's improved a lot and he's looking for scalps of the top players - so I knew it would be tough," the 30-year-old from Sheffield explained later. "When I got the balance between attack and defence wrong, I had problems. I thought I could have finished a couple of the games off a little better, but that's credit to him for making it tough."

Selby was disappointed to lose: "I thought if I could have taken that second I might have put myself in a position to win, but Nick just played the big points at the end of the games better, whereas that's what I did against Azlan yesterday.

"But I'm happy that I played well yesterday and today, after my poor result in Australia, it's good to get the season started."

Farhan Mehboob, the Pakistan qualifier who lined up against fifth seed Gregory Gaultier today after causing the only upset on day one, went down in straight games to the 27-year-old Frenchman, losing 11-5, 11-7, 11-4 in 43 minutes.

Farhan Floors Grant In Hong Kong Upset

Qualifier Farhan Mehboob single-handedly carried Pakistani hopes through to the second round of the Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open after upsetting England's 13th seed Adrian Grant in the first round of the $147,500 PSA World Tour squash event - the fifth PSA Super Series championship of the year - in Hong Kong.

The 21-year-old from Peshawar went into the match 3/0 down on his career record against fellow left-hander Grant - but powered through to an 11-9, 13-11, 11-9 victory over the 29-year-old Londoner ranked 15 in the world.

"I was prepared for it," the delighted winner said later. "We played in Saudi last year, he won 3/1 but it was a very good game, I knew I had to focus and play well on each point this time.

"He played too much attacking for me in the second, but I still managed to win that one, and I played my best squash in the third."

Mehboob, the world No30 celebrating his first time in the last 16 of a 2010 Super Series event, will now face Gregory Gaultier, the fifth seed from France who beat Australian qualifier Ryan Cuskelly 11-8, 11-3, 11-6.

"It's great to reach the second round, having had to qualify," added Mehboob. "I'm really looking forward to playing Greg now."

Egypt's defending champion Amr Shabana notched up his 26th successive win in the championship after beating Saurav Ghosal - but the third seed, looking for his sixth title in a row, was taken the full distance by the unseeded Indian before winning 14-12, 3-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-3 in 53 minutes.

"That's what it's about, a win's a win," said the relieved 31-year-old from Cairo after dominating the decider. "He stepped up and kept in front of me in the second, he had a game plan and stuck to it. I lost my way in the fourth, and the fifth is always anyone's, you just hope to get a few points ahead at the start and hang on to it.

"I managed to do that, and he lost his way a bit at the end."

With the top four matches in the draw going according to the seeding, England is already assured of interest in Saturday's semi-finals. Nick Matthew, the world number one from Sheffield seeded to win his sixth Tour title in a row in Hong Kong, brushed aside Italian qualifier Amr Swelim 11-3, 11-9, 11-6 - and will now face England team-mate Daryl Selby, the ninth seed who made up for a shock Australian Open first round exit two weeks ago, by overcoming Malaysian Mohd Azlan Iskandar 11-8, 11-6, 11-9.

Two further England team-mates will face-off to play Matthew or Selby: Londoner Peter Barker, the No8 seed, beat US No1 Julian Illingworth, a qualifier, 11-4, 11-8, 11-3, while 15th seed Alister Walker took four games to despatch Egyptian Hisham Mohd Ashour 11-6, 9-11, 11-6, 11-6.

Third Time Lucky For Abbas In Hong Kong

After failing to qualify for the previous two PSA Super Series events, Egypt's former world No13 Mohammed Abbas made it third time lucky when he despatched higher-ranked compatriot Omar Abdel Aziz in the qualifying finals of the $147,500 Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open to earn a place in the main draw of the fifth PSA Super Series championship of the year in Hong Kong.

Showing signs of his form before a long layoff with a foot injury, 29-year-old Abbas raced through the quickest match of the day to beat Aziz, the current world No34, 11-7, 11-2, 11-4 in 32 minutes.

The experienced Abbas, currently ranked 54 in the world, will now face a second fellow countryman Ramy Ashour, the second seed, in the first round.

Karim Abdel Gawad pulled off a further unexpected qualifying finals win to boost the Egyptian main draw quota to nine! The 19-year-old from Cairo, ranked 63 in the world, battled for 86 minutes to overcome rising Swiss star Nicolas Mueller, the world No37 who was celebrating his 21st birthday, 11-9, 5-11, 12-10, 5-11, 11-9.

"He beat me twice before, with bad scorelines for me - so I've been hoping to play him again for a while now, so that I could see how I've improved," Gawad said afterwards. "He's very tough, very talented, so I'm very happy to see I've improved and get through to the main draw."

Now the youngest player in the first round, Gawad will mark only his second appearance in a Super Series event this year when he takes on fellow countryman Wael El Hindi, the 11th seed.

Australian Aaron Frankcomb denied the hosts a qualifier in the main draw when he beat Max Lee. But the 22-year-old, looking for his first appearance in the main draw of his country's most prestigious squash tournament for three years, took Frankcomb the full distance, keeping him on court for 93 minutes before the 25-year-old Tasmanian recorded his 11-4, 5-11, 11-8, 6-11, 11-8 victory.

"I lost to him in the first round here last year, so it's pleasing to get that win under my belt," said Frankcomb. "The crowd were pretty fair, more on his side obviously, but clapping both of us when we played good shots."

Clyne Clambers Into Hong Kong Qualifying Finals

Scotland's Alan Clyne survived the longest battle in the first qualifying round of the $147,500 Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open to earn a place in the qualifying finals of the long-established PSA World Tour squash event - the fifth PSA Super Series championship of the year - in Hong Kong.

The 24-year-old from Edinburgh took a two-game lead against Matthew Karwalski - but the lower-ranked Australian, also 24, recovered the deficit to draw level. It was nip and tuck throughout the decider but Clyne ultimately clinched his 11-9, 11-7, 8-11, 9-11, 13-11 victory after 72 minutes.

"I was hoping to win it 3/0 - I was 8/6 up in the third, but then I was 8/3 down in the fifth," Clyne explained afterwards. "It was a bit of a yoyo match, all the games were close, it was a question of trying to knuckle down at the important moments.

"He stepped up the pace in the third and fourth, putting me under more pressure, and in the fifth I was having to go to last resort tactics, just picking everything up!"

The world No57, bidding to make his first appearance in a Super Series event since competing in the first of the year at the Tournament of Champions in New York, will now face Farhan Mehboob, the Pakistan number two.

Mehboob, a left-hander from Peshawar who is ranked 30 in the world, took four games to overcome local hope Hon Fung Wong 11-2, 7-11, 11-9, 11-6.

Egypt's Omar Abdel Aziz, the second highest-ranked player in the qualifying competition, was also taken the full distance before reserving his place in the final round. The 26-year-old world No30 from Cairo withstood a fightback by USA's Christopher Gordon before beating the 24-year-old from New York 11-7, 11-9, 7-11, 9-11, 11-3.

Aziz now faces experienced compatriot Mohammed Abbas for a place in the main draw. Abbas, a former world No13 bidding to make only his second appearance in a 2010 Super Series event, took just 19 minutes to down Hong Kong 17-year-old Cheuk Yan Tang 11-4, 11-4, 11-6.

Qualifying finals line-up:
Tom Richards (ENG) v Muhd Asyraf Azan (MAS)
Aaron Frankcomb (AUS) v Max Lee (HKG)
Julian Illingworth (USA) v Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS)
Nicolas Mueller (SUI) v Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY)
Stephen Coppinger (RSA) v Amr Swelim (ITA)
Farhan Mehboob (PAK) v Alan Clyne (SCO)
Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) v Siddharth Suchde (IND)
Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY) v Mohammed Abbas (EGY)

Amr Shabana & Nicol David Aim For High Fives In Hong Kong


Amr Shabana and Nicol David will be gunning for their fifth successive titles at the Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Squash Open when the world’s top players return for one of the biggest annual sporting events in Hong Kong from 23-29 August.


Nicol David, the world number one from Malaysia, is seeded to claim a record fifth women's title in the $74,000 Women’s International Squash Players' Association (WISPA) Gold event - while Shabana, the third seed from Egypt, will be hoping to equal the record five titles in a row won by legendary Pakistani Jansher Khan from 1987 to 1991 in the $147,500 PSA World Tour championship, the fifth PSA Super Series event of the year.


The early round matches will take place at Hong Kong Squash Centre in Admiralty before the tournament moves across the harbour to Diamond Hill in Kowloon for the semi-finals and finals, which will be held in a specially erected, state-of-the-art, all-glass court at Plaza Hollywood.  Players will be given a brand new experience of playing in front of the big crowds that visit the shopping mall - one of the busiest in Hong Kong.


England's new world number one Nick Matthew, who was forced to withdraw from the 2009 event with an ankle injury, is top seed in the men's event.  Runner-up in 2004, the 29-year-old from Sheffield faces a qualifier in the opening round before a predicted semi-final confrontation with title-holder Shabana.


Nicol David opens her 2010 campaign against England's Sarah Kippax and is expected to face English rival Jenny Duncalf, the world No2, in the women's final.


Speaking after the draws were made, Hong Kong Squash Chairman David Mui said: "Special thanks to our joint-title sponsors Cathay Pacific Airways and Sun Hung Kai Financial, whose support has contributed greatly to our success.  I would also like to thank our co-sponsors: Crocodile, Prince, Perrier, Fujifilm, Buler Swiss Watch, Lotus Tours and Plaza Hollywood.


"We are delighted that we attracted all the world best players including our local players, Annie Au, Rebecca Chiu, Joey Chan, Dick Lau and Max Lee, who will, I am sure, have the full support of the home crowd."



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