WORLD SUPER SERIES FINAL CANCELLED
Regrettably, the Squash World Series Finals being held at the
Queen’s Club, London have been cancelled. This is due to
technical difficulties with the structure in which the event was
The final will now be held over until a later date. Details see
All those who had tickets for the final day’s play will have
their money fully refunded. Details
The World Series Final will not take place
on Sunday 16 January 2011.
We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience this may have
caused. The PSA is committed to delivering a fantastic finale to
what has been a world-class tournament.
Further updates will be provided in due course.
Please be advised that a decision on when the
ATCO PSA World Series Final will take place is still being made.
An update will be available at
10am tomorrow, Sunday 16 January 2011.
Saturday 15 January, 2011
Matthew v Shabana for
Super Series Final
England/Egypt World Series
Final Guaranteed At Queen's
Shabana Moves On Matthew at Super Series
Top Seeds Triumph In World
Series Finals Openers
Darwish Makes Way For Walker In World
click on Images for Larger View
Pools and Results
Saturday 15 January, 2011 (15:45)
ATCO PSA World Series Final Postponed
The Professional Squash Association (PSA)
wishes to advise that due to a technical fault, today’s schedule of
play at the ATCO PSA World Series Finals has been postponed.
We are currently looking at rescheduling play for tomorrow (Sunday
16 January), and will provide a further update as and when we know
We sincerely apologise to our spectators for any inconvenience this
may have caused, but the PSA will never compromise the safety of its
players and spectators. The ATCO PSA World Series Finals has
provided fans of squash with world-class entertainment throughout
the week, and we look forward to being able to put on a final day to
Matthew v Shabana for Super Series Final
Nick Matthew will play Amr Shabana, Egypts four-time world champion,
in the ATCO PSA World Series Finals on Saturday evening at the
Queen’s Club in London.
The world No 1, world and Commonwealth champion beat long-time rival
James Willstrop in a one-sided match 11-4, 11-6, 11-8. Shabana
wasted little time in ousting Ramy Ashour, his younger compatriot
and one of the future stars of the game, in a repeat of the 2008
World Open final.
The Egyptian left-hander, 31, will now attempt to win for the first
time on British shores after finishing runner-up here on four
occasions his first coming at the British Junior Open in 1993.
Ashour, feeling the effects of a hamstring injury, went down 4-11,
5-11, 5-11 in 27 minutes.
Playing here at Queens is proud moment, Shabana admitted afterwards.
I have always enjoyed watching the tennis on TV since I was a kid.
Hopefully Nick and I can play another great match in front of this
Matthew and Shabana will also bid to become World Series champion
for the first time, the Egyptian having also lost to Gregory
Gaultier in the 2008 final.
For Willstrop, the defeats continue to mount against his fellow
last beat Matthew in the 2007 English
Open final and each match he had lost since 11 of them now has
clearly played a psychological advantage as Matthews dominance has
increased on the world stage.
Not that Willstrop has gone down without a fight. He lost out in a
brutal British Open final, where Willstrop held match balls, and the
Canary Wharf Classic semi-finals, which saw the Yorkshiremans bid
end with severe cramp after one of the finest contest in recent
the World Series semi-final, Matthew stretched his opponent early,
creating a number of winners from Willstrops loose angles in the
the second he raced to a 6-1 lead before Willstrop produced his best
squash of the match, using his backhand volley drops to clinical
effect to close the gap to 7-5.
9-6 down, Matthew sent a forehand winner to the back wall as
Willstrop failed to find a way past the 30 year-old. He was denied a
let, claiming he clipped Matthews shoe, and his frustration played
into Matthews hands as he closed out the second 11-6.
Matthew refused to play short in the third as he bid to dig
Willstrop into the ground. However the 6 4 Pontefract player wearing
a rare set of cycling shorts, a sign that he was struggling with
injury kept in the match as he crawled two points ahead at 7-5
before Matthew, yet again, surged towards the winning post.
Matthew said: I tried to keep the pressure on all the way through.
You get that bit between your teeth when you see the winning line
and you lose a little bit of composure. Its important to will
yourself on with those big points like the Egyptians do so well, but
I think I achieved that tonight.
clearly despondent Willstrop said: Im really sad I couldnt produce
it today. I was really flat. For two years I have been second best
to him and all I can do is keep battling away.
was also hard on himself when asked for his highlight of the week.
Beating Ramy, even though he was on one leg, Willstrop added.
the womens invitational event, Jenny Duncalf, the top seed, ousted
Camille Serme, Frances rising star, to reach Saturdays final.
Duncalf won 11-8, 11-13, 11-7.
The England No 1 will play compatriot Laura Massaro, who outplayed
Vanessa Atkinson, the former world champion.
World Series Final Guaranteed At Queen's
and Egypt underlined their dominance at the ATCO PSA World
Series Finals when the two rival nations hogged the four
semi-final berths for Friday's matches at The Queen's Club in
Nick Matthew, the world No1, will play arch rival James
Willstrop, while Egyptian duo Amr Shabana and Ramy
Ashour face off in the other semi-final after the quartet
progressed from the group stages in contrasting circumstances.
Matthew, who beat Willstrop in last month's World Open final
to become the first Englishman to lift the title, edged past his
gritty compatriot Peter Barker 12-14, 11-3, 11-7 in 51
minutes. It was the second time that Matthew had played beyond 50
minutes in the fast-paced, best-of-three pool format.
Matthew lost the opening game of his final group match - at 23
minutes, the second longest of the week - but used his physical
strength and mid-court dominance to edge out the left-hander from
London. Barker, playing his best squash of the week, matched Matthew
in all departments as the world No8 forced the world champion into a
number of uncharacteristic errors to the tin.
both players realising that defeat would end their World Series bid,
Matthew took the initiative in a seven-minute second game as the
30-year-old racked up seven points in a row to take the match into a
Barker was clearly saving himself but still managed to raise a smile
on both sides of the court mid-game. Having been denied a let at 4-3
down, the Londoner, who had only beaten Matthew once in nine
meetings, remonstrated with the referee but was told to close the
door and continue the ensuing slog-fest. Barker couldn't resist:
"I'm just trying to get a rest in here."
Matthew, never adventurous, kept plugging away at Barker's resolve
with trademark rallies that had been a feature of the Englishman's
play in 2010. Errors soon crept in and, despite saving two
match-balls, Matthew finished the game with a stroke.
"If you lose the first game it is pretty hairy and not that
enjoyable," Matthew said afterwards. "You can never let up in this
format and it will continue to eat away at my nerves."
was not an attribute handed out to Ashour, the leading player in the
2010 PSA World Series rankings, as the Egyptian moved edgily into
the semi-finals following his 15-13, 11-3 win over England's
Alister Walker, the former Leeds-based player who now resides in
The Egyptian admitted afterwards that he was still feeling the
effects of a hamstring injury that forced him out of last month's
World Open in Saudi Arabia.
The 'Cairo King' stormed into a 4-1 lead as he aimed to quell
Walker's own attacking instincts. But Ashour soon showed his
frustration as Walker clawed his way back, saving two game balls at
10-8 down, before the Egyptian, yet to find his rhythm, found enough
resolve to clinch the opener 15-13.
The second was in stark contrast as Ashour found renewed belief,
rattling off eight points in a row from 3-3 to finish Walker's
"I've done a lot of physio and there are still a lot of things
missing from my body," Ashour, the 2008 world champion, said. "I've
had to think more this week in how I've played my shots, but I'm
really glad I'm through.
"It is not enjoyable when you're not 100 per cent but all I can do
is keep pushing myself."
Ashour will have to be at his best to beat Shabana - a repeat of the
2009 World Open final when the young Egyptian left the court
in tears against his older rival.
the four-time world champion, has never won on British shores but
looks in good shape here with a convincing 11-9, 11-9 win over
compatriot Wael El Hindi.
The formidable Egyptian has looked a real threat this week and took
just 25 minutes to seal his semi-final berth as El Hindi lost his
third straight group match.
the final match of the night, Thierry Lincou of France knew
he had to beat Willstrop 2/0 to take his place in the semi-finals.
times, 34-year-old Lincou defied his tag as the world tour's elder
statesman. But Willstrop played a tight and controlled match to win
his third match of the week, along with Shabana the only player to
Willstrop said, after his 12-10, 11-7 victory: "There was a big
contrast from playing Ramy last night. Thierry's tightness was
impeccable and, as always, it's always good to beat him two-love."
 James Willstrop (ENG) v  Nick Matthew (ENG)
 Amr Shabana (EGY) v  Ramy Ashour (EGY)
Shabana Moves On Matthew at Super Series Finals
Shabana has produced his fair share of classic tussles with English
rivals over the last decade but the great Egyptian, for all his
achievements, has yet to win on British shores.
The four-time world champion went a step closer on Wednesday night
at the ATCO PSA World Series Finals when he shaded a brutal battle
with Nick Matthew, the world No 1, at the Queen’s Club in London.
Playing the best-of-three format that this event stipulates, Shabana
edged the 30 year-old world champion 5-11, 11-7, 17-15 in a match
lasting just shy of the hour mark. Matthew now needs to win his last
match on Thursday night against compatriot Peter Barker if he
harbours dreams of progressing to Friday’s semi-finals after missing
last year’s event following shoulder surgery.
Shabana said afterwards: “Nick has raised the bar for all of us. It
is a fine line and I had to perform my best – but at least it means
I am right on track to have what it takes to finally win here [in
The match was billed as the first to go the distance after
straight-games wins on Tuesday and they duly lived up to the hype.
Level at seven career wins apiece stretching back to 2001 – Shabana
won the majority of his matches during his domineering years five
years ago – a methodical Matthew took early bragging rights with a
Back came Shabana. Having lost out to Matthew on his way to becoming
the first Englishman to win the world title in December, the 31
year-old Cairo right-hander took the second after uncharacteristic
errors from the Englishman.
It paved the way for an unforgettable decider.
At 7-5 down, Shabana advanced to hold two match balls at 10-8. The
traded match balls in a gruelling period involving a number of key
lets before Shabana’s denouement.
Willstrop then produced a vintage performance to recoup pride after
the home favourite’s loss. Willstrop, Matthew’s Yorkshire rival
since junior days, just pipped Egypt’s world No 2 Ramy Ashour, whom
Willstrop last beat on his way to lifting the Tournament of
Champions title last January, winning 10-12, 11-6, 11-9.
On a night when the victors paid tribute to their opponents,
Willstrop said: “Ramy is so unique and he has the great ability to
leave you with little oxygen even when he is being deceptive. It is
just a higher pace of squash with him but I’m feeling good.”
Willstrop never let Ashour settle after losing a tight first game.
He won a succession of tight drops and managed to hold court even
when the pair visibly tired in the third. The former world junior
champion’s retrieval play was also exceptional as Ashour’s
frustration increased during the 49-minute tussle.
the final match of the evening, Peter Barker beat Wael El Hindi in
straight games to give himself a chance of reaching the semi-finals.
The Londoner, who needed to win after losing to Shabana on Tuesday,
was handed a conduct warning during the match but kept his nerve to
win 13-11, 11-9.
Earlier Alister Walker lost his second match in succession and
failed to qualify for the semi-finals. Walker, 28, lost to Thierry
Lincou, of France, 11-8, 12-10 in another high-tempo match.
Having come out of the stalls early against James Willstrop on the
opening night, Walker opted for a more sedate opening against the
Frenchman but a number of errors counted against the former
Leeds-based player as Lincou took the opener 11-8.
The tempo increased in the second as both players jockeyed for
mid-court supremacy. It was level-pegging until Walker found himself
with two match balls at 10-8. However the dogged Lincou, who has
never lost to Walker, won four points in a row to put himself in the
driving seat for a semi-final berth.
Backed by Ziad Al-Turki, the charismatic Saudi businessman and
Professional Squash Association chairman, the ATCO PSA World Series
Finals are the culmination of the 2010 Super Series season.
The eight players will play in two pools of four until Friday’s
semi-finals. The finals will take place on Saturday.
click on Images for
Top Seeds Triumph In World
Series Finals Openers
There were no major upsets in the season-ending ATCO
PSA World Series Finals in London with
England and Egypt producing a double dose of wins at The
Queen's Club as the
world's top eight players adapted to a fast-paced, best-of-three,
format on the opening night.
Willstrop, the world No4, opened his account with a hard-fought
13-11, 11-6 win over fellow Englishman and event debutant Alister
Walker in 32 minutes.
No1 Nick Matthew,
the second seed bidding to become the first Englishman to win the
Finals for ten years, then ended the first night with a comfortable
win over Egypt's Wael
between, Egyptian duo Amr
Shabana and Ramy
contrasting Group games as a futuristic bubble and, inside, a
purple-coloured squash court, took centre stage at the 125 year-old
Walker led 10-4 but Willstrop - one of four Englishmen in the
tournament - overturned six game-balls to take a lengthy opener in
21 minutes. Walker, the former Leeds-based player who now resides in
New York, looked visibly tired in the second and Willstrop quickly
wrapped up the second game.
Willstrop, who won Commonwealth
Games silver in
Delhi, said: "It was tough for both of us having not played
competitively for three weeks. But I didn't want to let it go
easily. I think I hurt him a bit in the second, as I hoped I would,
and his pace dropped slightly."
Shabana looked in fine fettle and wasted no time in getting his
campaign underway with a comfortable win over Londoner Peter
Shabana, the four-time world champion, came through 11-8, 11-2 in 28
minutes against the left-hander, another Englishman making his debut
in the end-of-year finals.
Egyptian said: "This format is more compact and normally I would hit
more winners - but at least you know you won't lose the point by
being safe. I gained confidence in the second and I'm happy to be
Egpyt's supremely-talented world No2, then repeated Shabana's feats
with a straight games win over French stalwart Thierry
However, the Cairo right-hander had to play near to his best.
Despite Lincou's left knee being heavily strapped, Ashour had to
fight back in both games, and the Egyptian admitted afterwards: "I'm
really glad I came back in both games as he was killing everything."
the final match of the evening, a highly-consistent Matthew took on
El Hindi - who first played this event back in 2000 - as the
Yorkshireman bids to add the World
Series Finals to his
world and Commonwealth titles after a stellar year on the world
Matthew, 30, missed last year's tournament after recovering from
shoulder surgery but now looks in good shape to qualify for the
semi-finals after coming through 11-5, 11-7.
"The venue is fantastic here and it will only get more interesting
as the week goes on," said the 30-year-old from Sheffield. "I was a
little bit headless to begin with but I tried to play my normal game
and it worked."
Backed by Ziad Al-Turki,
the charismatic Saudi businessman and Professional Squash
Association chairman, the World
Series Finals are the
culmination of the 2010 Super Series season.
Darwish Makes Way For Walker In World Series Finals
hamstring injury sustained in last year's Saudi PSA World Open
has caused Egypt's world No3 Karim Darwish to pull out of
next week's ATCO PSA World Series Squash Finals in London.
The ATCO PSA World Series Finals, which will be staged
at The Queen's Club from 11-15 January, is the culmination of
the 2010 PSA Super Series tour.
Formerly known as the Super Series Finals, the Queen's Club
event will see the world's eight top male players competing for the
Tour championship title and the highest first prize ever played for
in the UK and Europe.
Darwish ended the year in fourth place in the 2010 PSA Super
Series Rankings after reaching three event finals and
claiming the titles in the El Gouna International and the Qatar
Darwish will be replaced in the eight-man field by Alister Walker,
the world No20 from England who has recently relocated to New York.
The Botswana-born 28-year-old will be making his debut in the event.
The draw has also been revised, with the players now lining in two
pools as follows:
Pool A:  Ramy Ashour (Egypt),  James Willstrop
(England),  Thierry Lincou (France),  Alister Walker
Pool B:  Nick Matthew (England),  Amr Shabana
(Egypt),  Peter Barker (England), v  Wael El Hindi
The eight players will play best-of-three-game matches in two pools
of four from Tuesday to Thursday (11-13 January) before best-of-five
game semi-finals on Friday 14 January, followed by the Grand Final
on Saturday 15 January.
The World Series Finals will take place in an iconic
inflatable structure, specifically created for the show-piece event.
Inside the structure, the 'Z-Court' will contain the very latest in
squash-viewing - enabling uninterrupted 360° views of the action.
The purple glass court features innovative lighting and natural
flooring - and has been specifically developed to capture the speed
of the game on camera and produce the best quality viewing
Pool playing schedule:
Tuesday - 1st pool round:
 James Willstrop (ENG) v  Alister Walker (ENG)
 Ramy Ashour (EGY) v  Thierry Lincou (FRA)
 Amr Shabana (EGY) v  Peter Barker (ENG)
 Nick Matthew (ENG) v  Wael El Hindi (EGY)
Wednesday - 2nd pool round:
 Thierry Lincou (FRA) v  Alister Walker (ENG)
 Ramy Ashour (EGY) v  James Willstrop (ENG)
 Nick Matthew (ENG) v  Amr Shabana (EGY)
 Peter Barker (ENG) v  Wael El Hindi (EGY)
Thursday - 3rd pool round:
 Ramy Ashour (EGY) v  Alister Walker (ENG)
 James Willstrop (ENG) v  Thierry Lincou (FRA)
 Amr Shabana (EGY) v  Wael El Hindi (EGY)
 Nick Matthew (ENG) v  Peter Barker (ENG)