Storms To US Open Triumph
Just 24 hours
after becoming the youngest player ever to reach the final of her country's
longest established squash tournament, New York teenager Amanda Sobhy met
her match in the climax of the METROsquash Women's US Open as
experienced Dutch star Vanessa Atkinson romped to a straight games
victory at Millennium Park in Chicago in just 22 minutes.
17-year-old eighth seed, beat Ireland's No4 seed Aisling Blake in the
quarter-finals of the $36,500 WISPA World Tour event then despatched
Italy's Manuela Manetta to claim her unexpected place in the final.
seed Atkinson, the 34-year-old former world number one and world champion, was
too strong for the youngster, winning 11-6, 11-4, 11-8 to claim the 23rd WISPA
Tour title of her career.
Celebrates US Open Success
Wael El Hindi won his first title in the USA since relocating to New York
last year when he beat Dutchman Laurens Jan Anjema in the final of the
METROsquash US Open, the $80,000 5-star PSA World Tour squash
event in the Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park in Chicago.
glowing smile as he entered the court, it was clear that the Egyptian's heart
and mind were going to be in this match.
quickly built up a 6-1 lead in the first game before Anjema overcame his initial
nervousness - but the 30-year-old from Cairo resisted the fightback to take the
game was dominated by 'LJ' Anjema's textbook length. El Hindi showed signs of
conserving his energy for the third game as the third-seeded Dutchman moved
ahead to level the match.
third game saw both players trading points. As the players began to tire, the
number of lets increased. However, the calls did not seem to unsettle either
player and they kept their composure. Second seed El Hindi would not give up and
won the third game by a close margin.
from The Hague, appeared slightly slower in the fourth game - and El Hindi took
full advantage by bringing out more of his front court game. A tinned volley
drop ultimately gave the match to the Egyptian - and the packed crowd that
stayed up close to midnight gave him a well deserved standing ovation.
5-11, 11-7, 11-7 victory marked the seventh PSA Tour title of El Hindi's
career - but his first for more than two years.
El Hindi &
Anjema To Contest US Open Final
Wael El Hindi and Dutchman Laurens Jan Anjema will contest the men's
final of the METROsquash US Open after the second and third seed,
respectively, survived four-game semi-finals of the $80,000 5-star PSA World
Tour squash event in the Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park in
world No13 from The Hague who had never before progressed the first round in
three previous appearances in the event, took on Omar Mosaad, the No6
seed from Egypt who ousted French favourite Thierry Lincou in the
left-hander Anjema took the opening game, but 22-year-old Mosaad built up a 6-2
lead in the second. The Dutchman fought back to rattle off eight points in a row
to take a 10-6 lead.
two game-balls before Anjema finally managed to capture the game with a
wonderful combination of drop shots that had Mosaad scrambling around the front
court," said event spokesman Phil Yarrow.
In the third
game, Mosaad again built a 6-2 lead - but this time advanced to game-ball at
10-4 before finally taking the game to reduce the deficit.
regained his focus in the fourth and, after opening up a 10-2 advantage,
ultimately took the game to win the match 11-4, 11-9, 6-11, 11-6 - and claim his
24th appearance in a PSA Tour final.
El Hindi faced
Olli Tuominen from Finland in the other semi. "Tuominen has been a
frequent visitor to Chicago tournaments over the past 15 years, but he may never
have been playing as well here as he has been this week," explained Yarrow. "He
was simply sensational in his victory over Mohamed El Shorbagy in the
quarter-finals on Wednesday night and he would continue that good form at the
beginning of tonight's match."
dominated the early going - and won the first game 11-4 and raced to a 6-1 lead
in the second.
But El Hindi,
also a frequent visitor to Chicago and a favourite with the fans, battled back
to draw level before pressing home his advantage to beat the No8 seed 4-11,
11-9, 11-9, 11-6.
The win takes
the Egyptian into his 12th career final - but his first for more than two years.
El Hindi said
afterwards that he was not feeling good during the second game as Tuominen was
putting everything away. But he just tried to stay calm and play his way back
into the match.
Becomes Youngest Ever US Open Finalist
teenager Amanda Sobhy has claimed another entry in Squash history books
after beating Italian Manuela Manetta in the semi-finals of the
METROsquash Women's US Open to become the youngest player ever to reach the
final of her country's longest established tournament.
17-year-old eighth seed, who beat Ireland's No4 seed Aisling Blake in the
quarter-finals, despatched unseeded Manetta 11-3, 11-5, 5-11, 11-9 to reach the
final of the $36,500 WISPA World Tour event at Millennium Park in
established an impressive record in May when she became the first 16-year-old to
win four WISPA Tour titles. Three months later, the left-hander became one of
the youngest winners of the Women's World Junior (U19) crown.
In the other
Chicago semi, experienced Dutch star Vanessa Atkinson, a former world
number one and world champion, crushed fifth-seeded Dane Line Hansen
11-5, 11-5, 11-0 to reach the 39th Tour final of her career.
match, Sobhy said it was amazing to be in the US Squash Open final. "She had
been pumped up by the large crowd support," said event spokesman Phil Yarrow.
"She will face a tough test against Vanessa Atkinson in tomorrow's final.
But she certainly will have the crowd cheering her on."
Outlasts Lincou In Chicago
Omar Mosaad produced the biggest upset of the quarter-finals of the
METROsquash US Open when he outlasted veteran campaigner Thierry Lincou,
the top seed from France, to claim an unexpected place in the semi-finals of the
$80,000 5-star PSA World Tour squash event before a large crowd in the
Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park in Chicago.
by a knee injury sustained at last month's British Grand Prix, former
world number Lincou battled for 80 minutes against the sixth seed from Cairo
before Mosaad eventually emerged triumphant in an 8-11, 11-3, 13-11, 10-12, 11-8
After one of
the biggest wins of his career - and his first over Lincou - Mosaad will now
face Dutchman Laurens Jan Anjema after the third seed from The Hague
defeated unseeded Egyptian Mohammed Abbas 11-5, 12-10, 11-6.
And there was
further Egyptian disappointment when fourth seed Mohamed El Shorbagy
failed to secure his anticipated place in the semi-finals. It was a second
stirring performance by Olli Tuominen that caused the Alexandria
teenager's downfall - the 'Flying Finn' beating El Shorbagy 11-8, 11-5, 8-11,
31-year-old from Helsinki will take on new event favourite Wael El Hindi,
the second seed from Cairo who beat rising Swiss star Nicolas Mueller
15-13, 11-9, 11-8.
Topples Top Seed Grinham
Manuela Manetta scored the best win of her career when she dismissed top
seed Natalie Grinham on the opening day of main draw action in the
METROsquash Women's US Open. The straight games upset takes the
27-year-old from Parma to an unexpected place in the quarter-finals of the
$36,500 WISPA World Tour squash event in Chicago.
a career-high No25 world ranking in December 2007, Manetta has endured a barren
spell in which her ranking slipped to a current 45.
unseeded Italian was in sparkling form in only her second appearance in the main
draw of the leading event in the USA - beating former world number two
Natalie Grinham, from the Netherlands, 11-6, 11-9, 11-8.
Grinham is on
a Tour comeback trail after giving birth to her first child, son Kieran, in May.
not on her best form as her new baby watched from behind the court in sister
Rachael's arms," said event spokesman Jim Wellington. "As the score line
shows, the play was close, but errors from Grinham combined with a solid,
aggressive, and mentally tough performance from Manuela led to an early exit for
the world No13."
now face Latasha Khan, the sixth seed from the USA who also needed only
three games to overcome English qualifier Victoria Lust 11-4, 11-6, 11-6.
Khan will be
joined by compatriot Amanda Sobhy in the first time that there have been
two US players in the event's last eight for over 17 years.
17-year-old world junior champion from New York, defeated Canadian qualifier
Alexandra Norman - winner of her maiden Tour title at last week's
Southwest Open in Arizona - 11-5, 11-8, 11-8.
On In Chicago
world No13 Mohammed Abbas scored another notable win in his comeback bid
after a long injury layoff when he beat fifth seed Alister Walker to
reach the quarter-finals of the METROsquash US Open, the $80,000
5-star PSA World Tour squash event at the University Club of Chicago
world No17 from England, took the opening game - then had to save two match
balls in the fourth to take the match into a decider.
Abbas was more mentally solid in the fifth and closed out the match 3-11, 11-4,
11-7, 10-12, 11-9 to reach the last eight of a major PSA World Tour event for
the first time in more than two years.
29-year-old from Giza now faces Laurens Jan Anjema after the third-seeded
Dutchman also survived a five-game battle, beating Germany's rising star
Simon Rosner 11-6, 7-11, 11-1, 9-11, 11-2.
There will be
unexpected Swiss interest in the quarter-finals after 13th seed Nicolas
Mueller upset Hisham Mohd Ashour, the No7 seed from Egypt, 11-8,
9-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-7.
disappointing recent results, the 21-year-old from Zurich will be pleased to
have made the last eight of a five-star PSA Tour event - where he takes
on a second Egyptian, Wael El Hindi.
second seed El Hindi defeated Canada's Egypt-born Shahier Razik 11-6,
11-8, 8-11, 11-3 to move one step closer to his anticipated place in the final.
Olli Tuominen ended US interest in the event when he beat 12th seed
Julian Illingworth. Hoping to become the first American to reach the last
eight of his country's leading international event since 1993, New Yorker
Illingworth went down 14-12, 11-6, 10-12, 11-9.
Abbas & Waller
Oust Seeds In US Open
a former England junior international, produced one of a pair of upsets on the
opening day of main draw action in the 2010 METROsquash US Open
when he ousted Brazil's 14th seed Rafael F Alarcon to reach the last 16
of the $80,000 5-star PSA World Tour squash event at the University
Club of Chicago in Chicago.
20-year-old from Enfield, near London, recovered from a game down to topple
Alarcon - ranked more than 20 places higher in the world - 9-11, 11-8, 11-9,
now face French favourite Thierry Lincou after the world No8 saw off US
hope Christopher Gordon 11-9, 11-9, 11-9.
the 12th seed from New York, now carries American hopes singlehandedly. The
Portland-born 26-year-old became the first American to reach the last 16 since
1993 when he beat South African qualifier Clinton Leeuw 11-6, 11-6, 11-4.
will now face Finland's 8th Olli Tuominen for a place in the
experienced Mohammed Abbas also caused an upset when he defeated
England's No15 seed Chris Ryder 11-8, 12-10, 11-8. The unseeded former
world No13 is making his Tour comeback after a long-time foot injury. Abbas, one
of five Egyptians in the second round, will now take on England's fifth seed
Triumph In US Open Qualifiers
players claimed three of the eight qualifying places on offer in the 2010
METROsquash US Open after successes in the qualifying finals of the
$80,000 5-star PSA World Tour squash event at the University Club of
Chicago in Chicago.
Joel Hinds and Tom Pashley will all make their debuts in the
long-established event which will move to an all-glass showcourt in the city's
Millennium Park from the quarter-final stage.
Exeter, beat Chicago-based Dane Jonas Laursen 11-6, 11-6, 11-4, while
Pashley, from Brighton, defeated Botswana's Lefika Ragontse 11-5, 7-11,
winner of the World University Championship crown, overcame 43-year-old
compatriot Chris Walker, a former England captain and runner-up in the
1994 championship, 11-4, 11-7, 11-5.
former world number one and world champion Thierry Lincou is favourite to
win the prestigious title for the first time. The 34-year-old world No8 from
Marseille, who made his debut in the 2000 event and reached the semi-finals both
in 2002 and 2003, faces local hope Christopher Gordon, from New York, in
the opening round.
late withdrawal of Egypt's defending champion Amr Shabana with a back
injury, Lincou is expected meet Wael El Hindi, also an Egyptian, in the
final. El Hindi, the world No11 who is based in New York, begins his Chicago
campaign against Mexican qualifier Jorge Isaac Baltazar Ferreira.