PSA NewsSquash News | Professional Squash AssociationSun, 30 Apr 2017 00:34:07 +0100 Sun, 30 Apr 2017 00:34:07 +0100 Road2Dubai Competition Winner Announced The winner of the #Road2Dubai competition has been announced with squash fan Samantha Ward claiming the incredible prize of flights, tickets and accommodation to the PSA Dubai World Series Finals - the showpiece tournament which takes place at the stunning Dubai Opera between June 6-10. The competition began during October’s U.S. Open in Philadelphia with entrants being asked to send in their best ‘Rocky Balboa’ pose in homage to the famous ‘Rocky Steps’ which reside in the Pennsylvanian city. Competitions such as the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions quiz and the SquashXtra ‘Spot the Camel’ competition continued throughout the season and brought in hundreds of entrants - with the grand prize draw seeing Samantha claim the once-in-a-lifetime prize after being chosen at random. <iframe width="560" height="315" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> <br> <br> "I’m so happy, I can’t stop smiling," said a delighted Samantha. "I wanted to scream when I found out, but I was at work! I’ve never been to Dubai and I’m a huge squash fan. It feels unreal." Samantha, 23, has won two return tickets to Dubai, including accommodation and VIP tickets for the PSA Dubai World Series Finals, while she has also received PSA merchandise and a souvenir from Dubai. Squash fans who missed out on the prize can still <a href="">book tickets now</a> or catch all of the action on <a href="">SQUASHTV</a> or <a href="">Eurosport Player</a>. 4711 Fri, 28 Apr 2017 13:58:32 +0100 Watch Live Action from the Grasshopper Cup #PSAWorldTour Six of the world’s top 10 players will be on show at Zurich’s Puls5 next week when the 2017 Grasshopper Cup takes place *LIVE* on *SQUASHTV* and *Eurosport Player*. Current World No.1 Gregory Gaultier will aim to win his fifth PSA World Tour title in a row, with the ‘French General’ enjoying a red-hot run of form which has seen him build up a 19-match unbeaten run. And the 34-year-old is seeded to play the only man to have beaten him in 2017 - World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad - in the semi-finals less than a week after being dethroned at the summit of the World Rankings by the 25-year-old Egyptian. With the likes of World No.3 Mohamed ElShorbagy and three-time World Champion Nick Matthew also involved in a world-class draw, the 2017 iteration of the Grasshopper Cup promises to be one of the most competitive ever. European-based subscribers can tune into <a href="" target="_blank">*Eurosport Player*</a> to watch all the action unfold, while viewers in the rest of the world can log into <a href="" target="_blank">*SQUASHTV*</a>. *2016/17 Upcoming SQUASHTV & Eurosport Player Schedule:* Grasshopper Cup: May 3-7 Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic - May 16-20 PSA Dubai World Series Finals: June 6-10 *Early rounds are exclusive to SQUASHTV and Eurosport Player only. Semi-finals and finals from World Series, World Championship and selected other tournaments will be shown on SQUASHTV, Eurosport Player and <a href="" target="_blank">multiple broadcasters around the world</a>.* 4710 Fri, 28 Apr 2017 12:45:59 +0100 Throwback Thursday: Story of 2016 Grasshopper Cup #PSAWorldTour Zurich’s Puls5 will host a superb line-up when the 2017 Grasshopper Cup takes place between May 3-7, with the world’s top four players set to battle it out in the PSA M100 tournament. The Grasshopper Cup features a prize fund of $100,000 for the first time in the tournament’s 38-year history and has attracted one of its strongest ever draws, with 2015 champion Gregory Gaultier, World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad, World No.3 Mohamed ElShorbagy and World No.4 Nick Matthew all involved. Last year’s instalment saw a number of surprise results entertain squash fans in all four corners of the globe - relive all of the action below! *First Round Results* [1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt [Q] Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) 3-1: 11-8, 9-11, 11-9, 11-5 (53m) [WC] Nicolas Mueller (SUI) bt [8] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 3-2: 10-12, 11-8, 9-11, 11-8, 11-7 (95m) [7] Ali Farag (EGY) bt Leo Au (HKG) 3-0: 11-8, 11-6, 11-5 (35m) Chris Simpson (ENG) bt [3] Mathieu Castagnet (FRA) 3-0: 14-12, 11-9, 11-9 (63m) [4] Marwan Elshorbagy (EGY) bt [Q] Alan Clyne (SCO) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 11-5 (42m) [5] Cameron Pilley (AUS) bt [Q] Adrian Waller (ENG) 3-2: 6-11, 7-11, 11-8, 11-2, 11-6 (69m) Gregoire Marche (FRA) bt [6] James Willstrop (ENG) 3-0: 11-8, 11-6, 11-7 (40m) [2] Simon Rösner (GER) bt [Q] Paul Coll (NZL) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 11-5 (60m) The opening round of the tournament saw three seeds culled, with former World No.1 James Willstrop falling to a shock defeat against Frenchman Gregoire Marche. Willstrop, ranked outside of the world’s top 10 at the time, has shown glimpses of his best ever form at times this season, but was powerless to prevent a rampant Marche from surging to the win in straight games. Number three seed Mathieu Castagnet also missed out on a place in the last eight after he lost to England’s Chris Simpson, while eighth seed Ryan Cuskelly fell to tournament wildcard Nicolas Mueller. <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <br> <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> *Quarter-Final Results* [1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt [WC] Nicolas Mueller (SUI) 3-0: 11-4, 11-2, 11-7 (37m) [7] Ali Farag (EGY) bt Chris Simpson (ENG) 3-1: 9-11, 11-6, 11-7, 11-5 (54m) [4] Marwan Elshorbagy (EGY) bt [5] Cameron Pilley (AUS) 3-0: 11-9, 11-8, 11-7 (42m) [2] Simon Rösner (GER) bt Gregoire Marche (FRA) 3-1: 9-11, 11-6, 11-9, 16-14 (86m) Egypt’s Marwan ElShorbagy signalled his intention to mount a title challenge with a 3-0 win over the hard-hitting Australian Cameron Pilley. ElShorbagy seized every opportunity to attack against against an out-of-sorts Pilley to set up a semi-final meeting with German No.1 Simon Rösner, who came through a bruising 86-minute clash with Marche. Top seed Gaultier was also victorious in his quarter-final fixture, with a 3-0 win over Nicolas Mueller seeing him into the last four, where Egypt’s Ali Farag awaited after he defeated Simpson. <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <br> <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> *Semi-Final Results* [1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt [7] Ali Farag (EGY) 3-1: 11-5, 11-8, 5-11, 12-10 (61m) [4] Marwan Elshorbagy (EGY) bt [2] Simon Rösner (GER) 3-0: 15-13, 11-7, 11-5 (58m) Defending champion Gaultier moved into his second successive Grasshopper Cup final after the ‘French General’ came through the challenge of Farag, overturning a game ball in the fourth to prevail on the tie-break. Meanwhile, then World No.12 ElShorbagy earned his spot in his biggest Tour final up to that point with victory over 2015 runner-up Rösner. <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <br> <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <br> *Final Result* [4] Marwan Elshorbagy (EGY) bt [1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) 3-2: 6-11, 13-11, 11-9, 9-11, 11-6 (66m) Despite going a game down to a seemingly invincible Gaultier, ElShorbagy rallied to prevail in a thrilling five-game battle, lifting his biggest ever title. <div style="position:relative;height:0;padding-bottom:56.25%"><iframe src="" width="640" height="360" frameborder="0" style="position:absolute;width:100%;height:100%;left:0" allowfullscreen></iframe></div> <br> <br> The 23-year-old went on to capture the Houston Open crown the following month and would reach the world’s top five a year later. Head to SQUASHTV to watch more matches from the Grasshopper Cup - <a href="">including the 2014 final between the legendary Amr Shabana and Tarek Momen</a>.* The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on Eurosport Player. <a href="">FIND OUT MORE</a>* The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on SQUASHTV. <a href="">FIND OUT MORE</a> 4709 Thu, 27 Apr 2017 12:09:23 +0100 Gawad Defeats Momen to Lift Houston Open Crown #PSAWorldTour World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad captured his first PSA World Tour title since January after the 25-year-old defeated fellow Egyptian Tarek Momen in the final of the Life Time Houston Open, PSA M70 tournament. Gawad, who will become the fifth Egyptian of all time to top the World Rankings next month, earned his place in the title decider courtesy of wins over Pakistani qualifier Nasir Iqbal, Australian No.1 Ryan Cuskelly and World No.9 Fares Dessouky. World No.11 Momen, meanwhile, was appearing in his first Tour final since December’s Channel VAS Championship and defeated Reuben Phillips, former World No.4 Miguel Angel Rodriguez and the in-form Mohamed Abouelghar en route to the final. But it was Gawad who took the spoils courtesy of an 11-6, 5-11, 11-8, 11-6 victory at the Life Time Athletic club to lift the fifth title of a trophy-laden season for the man from Giza. *Result - Final: 2017 Life Time Houston Open* [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) 3-1: 11-6, 5-11, 11-8, 11-6 (49m) 4707 Mon, 24 Apr 2017 09:49:52 +0100 Disciplinary: Sharpes Fined, Alexander Warned England's Charles Sharpes has been fined £150 for breaching the PSA Code Of Conduct in relation to rule 10.4.L. Abuse of Racket or Equipment at the Holtrand Open. Sharpes had a further £150 suspended fine enforced, which will become payable upon any further disciplinary action taken in next 12-months. Zac Alexander meanwhile has been given an official warning following a breach of rule 10.4.M 'Verbal Abuse' during the Elanora Open. *Zac Alexander (AUS)* Offence: Breach of PSA Code of Conduct Rule 10.4.M. 'Verbal Abuse' during Elanora Open 2017. Action: Player warned about future behaviour. *Charles Sharpes (ENG)* Offence: Breach of PSA Code of Conduct Rule 10.4.L 'Abuse of Racket or Equipment' during Holtrand Open 2017 Action: Fined £150 with a further £150 suspended, as a result of failure to address behaviour in relation to similar incidents within past 12-months 4706 Mon, 24 Apr 2017 07:26:12 +0100 interactiveSquash Rocks Munich Airport Pioneering German squash company interactiveSquash have been offering squash fans around the world a unique opportunity to compete on a start of the art all-glass show court - complete with ASB's brand new all-glass floor technology and interactiveSquash's ground-breaking technology driving interface - at Munich Airport. Set up on April 19th - and remaining in situ for fans to have a go until April 28th - the company, who earlier this year won an ISPO Brand New Fitness technology award for their immersive graphic based product that transforms a squash court into an interactive playground, are giving squash fans the chance to play on the court in one hour slots. Located in the Munich Airport Center between Terminals 1 and 2, it marks the first time worldwide that an interactiveSquash court has been make publicly available to play on while throughout the entirety of the two-week show, interactiveSsquash will be hosting a variety of events including mini-tournaments, games and training tutorials. Current World No.1 Gregory Gaultier was amongst the players to visit the court over the weekend, and the 'General' was impressed with what he saw: <iframe src="" width="500" height="816" style="border:none;overflow:hidden" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowTransparency="true"></iframe> Here's a look at the court going up on location <blockquote class="twitter-video" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Look at it go! The interactiveSQUASH/ASB ShowGlassCourt is well on its way to completion ⚫️ Book an hour of play at <a href=""></a> <a href=""></a></p>— interactiveSQUASH (@isquashglobal) <a href="">April 12, 2017</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script> With four days remaining fans can still book available slots by visiting interactiveSQUASH is on a mission to revolutionise the sport of squash by transforming existing courts into technologically-advanced training facilities. Utilising a projector and several cameras, interactiveSQUASH is a platform that consists of over 20 games and training modules. The goal is to introduce the game to a brand new generation of players and help improve the way seasoned veterans train. Founder Markos Kern states “Our main objective is to help grow the sport. By integrating technology into the traditional squash court, we’re adapting squash for the 21st century.” 4705 Mon, 24 Apr 2017 07:04:32 +0100 Gawad To Face Momen In Houston Finale Top seed Karim Abdel Gawad continued to cruise through the draw at the Life Time Fitness Houston Open to secure his place in the 2017 tournament decider, where he will take on compatriot Tarek Momen for the spoils. Up against Fares Dessouky, who this month broke into the top ten for the first time in his career, Gawad recovered from a slow start that saw him drop the opening game 9-11 to come through a comfortable 3-1 winner. Momen meanwhile was equally impressive as he swept aside Mohamed Abouelghar in straight games to reach his first tournament final since December 2016 - where he will be aiming to collect his first title since 2014. Results – Semi-finals: 2017 Life Time Fitness Houston Open [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) 3-1: 9-11, 11-7, 11-5, 11-7 (49m) [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) bt [8] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) 3-0: 11-7, 11-9, 11-5 (36m) Draw - Final [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) v [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) 4704 Sun, 23 Apr 2017 16:25:16 +0100 Egyptians Complete Clean Sweep In Houston Open Quarters There was Egyptian domination during the quarter-finals of the Life Time Fitness Houston Open as number one seed Karim Abdel Gawad led a clean sweep alongside compatriots Fares Dessouky, Tarek Momen and Mohamed Abouelghar to complete the semi-final line-up at the PSA M70 tournament. Gawad, who will next month overtake Gregory Gaultier atop the PSA World Rankings, battled through against tough Australian left-hander Ryan Cuskelly to prevail 3-1 and set up a last four showdown with Dessouky, the 22-year-old who impressed as he battled back from losing the opening game to defeat New Zealand's Paul Coll 3-1. The bottom half of the draw saw Mohamed Abouelghar, who this month broke into the top 20 for the first time in his career, end the run of tournament Wildcard Mazen Hesham courtesy of a 3-0 victory - just 24 hours after Hesham had stunned former World No.1 James Willstrop. Momen meanwhile came through a speedy and unorthodox affair with Colombian Miguel Angel Rodriguez, winning 3-1, to secure his place alongside Abouelghar in the semi-finals. Results – Quarter-finals: 2017 Life Time Fitness Houston Open [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt [5] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 3-1: 11-4, 4-11, 11-9, 11-9 (60m) [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) bt [7] Paul Coll (NZL) 3-1: 11-13, 11-9, 11-7, 11-7 (62m) [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) bt [6] Miguel Angel Rodriguez (COL) 3-1: 11-7, 11-5, 8-11, 11-9 (55m) [8] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) bt [WC] Mazen Hesham (EGY) 3-0: 11-4, 11-6, 12-10 (34m) Draw – Semi-Finals: [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) v [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) v [8] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) 4703 Sat, 22 Apr 2017 11:07:22 +0100 Hesham Scores Huge Win Over Willstrop In Houston In just his second tournament since returning to competitive PSA World Tour action following a six month injury absence, Egyptian Mazen Hesham scored a major first round upset to knock former World No.1 James Willstrop out of the Life Time Fitness Houston Open, PSA M70 tournament. Hesham, currently ranked World No.47, overcame a gap of 41 positions on the World Rankings to defeat Willstrop in straight games courtesy of his unorthodox style and maverick shot making abilities. After taking the first two games for the loss of just six points the 23-year-old withstood a Willstrop resurgence to come through a tense third game tie-break and set up a quarter-final encounter with compatriot Mohamed Abouelghar - who squeezed past another Englishman, Nathan Lake, 3-2. Tarek Momen made it a trio of Egyptian winners on the night as he dispatched Reuben Phillips in three while former World No.4 Miguel Angel Rodriguez avoided another shock first round exit as he battled back from 2-1 down to defeat Mexican Arturo Salazar. *Results – First Round (Bottom Half): 2017 Life Time Fitness Houston Open* [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) bt [Q] Reuben Phillips (ENG) 3-0: 11-9, 11-4, 12-10 
[6] Miguel Angel Rodriguez (COL) bt [Q] Arturo Salazar (MEX) 3-2: 12-10, 8-11, 7-11, 11-4, 11-6 [8] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) bt [Q] Nathan Lake (ENG) 3-2: 8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-8, 11-5 [WC] Mazen Hesham (EGY) bt [2] James Willstrop (ENG) 3-0: 11-2, 11-4, 13-11 *Draw – Quarter-Finals: To Be Played April 21st* [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) v [5] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) [7] Paul Coll (NZL) v [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) v [6] Miguel Angel Rodriguez (COL) [8] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) v [WC] Mazen Hesham (EGY) 4702 Fri, 21 Apr 2017 15:37:20 +0100 Gaultier and Willstrop Seeded to Meet in Last Four After Bellevue Classic Draw Is Released #PSAWorldTour Current World No.1 Gregory Gaultier is seeded to meet former World No.1 James Willstrop in the semi-final stage of next month’s Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic after the main draw for the PSA M100 tournament was released today (April 21). With a share of the $150,000 prize fund up for grabs, the Bellevue Classic is the most lucrative 16-man main drawn squash tournament of all time and will see Gaultier and Willstrop battle for honours between May 16-20 at the Boys and Girls Club Hidden Valley Field House in Bellevue, Washington.Bellevue became the first city ever in the United States to hold the PSA Men’s World Championship when it staged the iconic tournament in November 2015 and Gaultier - who captured that title - has been the in-form man on the PSA World Tour in 2017, claiming four Tour titles and losing just once. The Frenchman is currently the oldest World No.1 of all time and, while he will lose top spot to World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad in next month’s rankings, the 34-year-old will look to continue his stunning form when he takes on a qualifier in round one in Bellevue. Willstrop, meanwhile, begins his tournament against Hong Kong’s World No.16 Max Lee, while the other half of the draw boasts the likes of three-time World Champion Ramy Ashour, World No.5 Marwan ElShorbagy and World No.6 Ali Farag. Ashour and ElShorbagy both kickstart their tournaments against qualifiers and are seeded to face each other in the quarter-finals, with the winner of that fixture set to face Farag for a place in the final if the 24-year-old plays to his seeding. Tournament wildcard and United States No.5 Dylan Cunningham will take on Farag in round one. The qualifying stages of the Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic, PSA M100 tournament will take place between May 14-15 at the PRO Sports Club - which also staged the qualifying rounds for the 2015 World Championship - while the main draw will be held between May 16-20. Tickets for the tournament start from $80 and can be purchased <a href="">here.</a> The whole tournament will also be shown live on SQUASHTV (Rest of World) and Eurosport Player (Europe Only). *2017 Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic - First Round Draw:* [1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) v [Qualifier] [Qualifier] v [6] Tarek Momen (EGY) [7] Daryl Selby (ENG) v Borja Golan (ESP) Max Lee (ESP) v [4] James Willstrop (ENG) [3] Ali Farag (EGY) v [WC] Dylan Cunningham (USA) Stephen Coppinger (RSA) v [8] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) [5] Ramy Ashour (EGY) v [Qualifier] [Qualifier] v [2] Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) 4701 Fri, 21 Apr 2017 10:07:31 +0100 Seeds Prevail on Day One of Houston Open #PSAWorldTour There were no upsets to be found on the opening day of main draw action at the Life Time Fitness Houston Open as World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad led his fellow seeds into the quarter-final stage of the PSA M70 tournament taking place at the Life Time Athletic Club. Gawad, the 25-year-old from Giza who will become World No.1 next month, found it tough going in the early stages of his first round encounter with Pakistani qualifier Nasir Iqbal - who was making his first Tour appearance in 14 months - and fell a game behind after losing on the tie-break. But the talented Egyptian soon found his range to gain control of the match and he took the next three games without reply to record an 11-13, 11-4, 11-3, 11-7 victory. Gawad will pit his wits against World No.14 Ryan Cuskelly in the last eight after Cuskelly’s first round encounter with Farhan Mehboob was cut short due to an injury to the man from Pakistan, with Cuskelly - a semi-finalist here last year - two games up at the time. The other quarter-final fixture in the top half of the draw will feature Egypt’s World No.9 Fares Dessouky and World No.13 Paul Coll from New Zealand, with the pair set to contest a thrilling match in Houston as they battle for a share of the $70,000 prize fund - a $20,000 increase compared to last year’s tournament. Dessouky only just snuck through against Coll’s compatriot, World No.39 Campbell Grayson, to take it 11-9 in the fifth, while Coll eased past World No.24 Zahed Mohamed to seal his quarter-final berth. Stay up to date with the action by checking out our <a href="">live scoring</a> page! *Results - First Round (Top Half): 2017 Life Time Fitness Houston Open* [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt [Q] Nasir Iqbal (PAK) 3-1: 11-13, 11-4, 11-3, 11-7 [5] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) bt Farhan Mehboob (PAK) 2-0: 11-8, 11-2 ret. [7] Paul Coll (NZL) bt Zahed Mohamed (EGY) 3-0: 11-7, 11-9, 11-9 [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) bt Campbell Grayson (NZL) 3-2: 4-11, 11-4, 2-11, 11-8, 11-9 *Draw - First Round (Bottom Half): To Be Played April 20th* [3] Tarek Momen (EGY) v [Q] Reuben Phillips (ENG)
[Q] Arturo Salazar (MEX) v [6] Miguel Angel Rodriguez (COL) [8] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) v [Q] Nathan Lake (ENG) [WC] Mazen Hesham (EGY) v [2] James Willstrop (ENG) *Draw - Quarter-Finals (Top Half): To Be Played April 21st* [1] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) v [5] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) [7] Paul Coll (NZL) v [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) 4700 Thu, 20 Apr 2017 11:13:20 +0100 Line-ups Confirmed For Season-Ending PSA Dubai World Series Finals  #PSAWorldTour Following the conclusion of last week's El Gouna International Squash Open - the final qualifying event on the 2016/17 Men’s Road To Dubai Standings - the line-up for the season-ending PSA Dubai World Series Finals has been confirmed and will see 16 of the world's best squash players descend on Dubai Opera from June 6-10 to compete for one of the sport's most lucrative titles. With an equal prize purse of $160,000 on offer in both the Men's and Women's tournaments, the event will bring the cream of the squash world together for a season-ending spectacular - which will feature ten current and former World No.1s. Only the top eight players on the Road To Dubai Standings qualify for a coveted place at the tournament and after a nail-biting week of competition at the final World Series tournament of the season in El Gouna, it was Germany's Simon Rösner who solidified his position inside the Men's top eight to sit narrowly ahead of former winner Ramy Ashour, who completes the top eight courtesy of his triumph at the Hong Kong Open at the start of the season.  Karim Abdel Gawad, the Egyptian World Champion who will become the World No.1 on May 1st, tops the Men's Standings after a breakthrough season that saw him capture the spoils at the Qatar Classic and Tournament of Champions along with runner-up finishes at the Hong Kong Open and El Gouna International.  The man he overtakes atop the World Rankings, defending World Series Finals champion Gregory Gaultier, sits in second place in the Standings after dominating the PSA Word Tour so far in 2017 while former World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy occupies the third position, just ahead of younger brother and World Series Finals debutant Marwan ElShorbagy.  English pair Nick Matthew and James Willstrop, both former World No.1s, sit at fifth and sixth on the standings, respectively to complete the Men's line up, while it is Frenchwoman Camille Serme - winner of the U.S. Open and Tournament of Champions, who tops the Women's Standings. Two-time Women's World Champion Nour El Sherbini sits in second place, just ahead of last year's World Series Finals champion Laura Massaro, who will be joined by compatriots Sarah-Jane Perry - the 26-year-old who will be making her debut at the tournament - and Alison Waters, who comes in from berth number nine to to replace the injured Amanda Sobhy. El Sherbini will be joined by compatriots Raneem El Welily and Nouran Gohar, while eight-time World Champion Nicol David completes the Women's qualifiers.* The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on Eurosport Player. <a href="">FIND OUT MORE</a>* The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on SQUASHTV. <a href="">FIND OUT MORE</a>20170418121442_R2D_Final.jpg?x=0&y=0&w=500&o=608 4699 Tue, 18 Apr 2017 12:06:03 +0100 Weekend Roundup: Soliman Seals West of Ireland Open Title #PSAWorldTour Egyptian World No.59 Youssef Soliman overcame Germany’s Jens Schoor in the final of the Garavan’s West of Ireland Open to lift his fourth PSA World Tour title as three other tournaments came to an end over the weekend. Soliman, the 20-year-old from Cairo, claimed wins over Ammar Altamimi, Geoffrey Demont and Mazen Gamal before overcoming World No.81 Jens Schoor 11-4, 7-11, 11-3, 11-9 at the final hurdle to take the plaudits. There was also success for two other Egyptians over the weekend, with Rowan Elaraby and Amina Yousry triumphing at the Virginia Squash Racquets Association Richmond Open and Czech International Championship, respectively - with Yousry claiming her maiden Tour title. Meanwhile, England’s World No.90 Adam Murrills played to his seeding at the BCS Russian Open, with the number one seed defeating Finnish qualifier Miko Aijanen to capture the third Tour crown of his career. *Results* *2017 Garavan’s West of Ireland Open* *Final* [3] Youssef Soliman (EGY) bt [5] Jens Schoor (GER) 3-1: 11-4, 7-11, 11-3, 11-9 (60m) *Semi-Final* [5] Jens Schoor (GER) bt [Q] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) 3-1: 11-5, 11-5, 7-11, 11-7 [3] Youssef Soliman (EGY) bt [2] Mazen Gamal (EGY) 3-2: 11-6, 7-11, 11-3, 8-11, 11-5 *Quarter-Final* [5] Jens Schoor (GER) bt [1] Joshua Masters (ENG) 3-2: 11-9, 8-11, 11-8, 4-11, 11-5 [Q] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) bt [4] Shehab Essam (EGY) 3-2: 4-11, 11-5, 4-11, 11-6, 12-10 [3] Youssef Soliman (EGY) bt [6] Geoffrey Demont (FRA) 3-0: 11-1, 11-3, 11-1 [2] Mazen Gamal (EGY) bt [WC] Brian Byrne (IRL) 3-0: 11-7, 11-9, 11-8 *First Round* [1] Joshua Masters (ENG) bt [Q] Rory Stewart (SCO) 3-1: 11-6, 9-11, 11-9, 11-6 [5] Jens Schoor (GER) bt Ben Grindrod (NZL) 3-1: 8-11, 11-6, 11-7, 11-3 [Q] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) bt [7] Tom Ford (ENG) 3-0: 11-3, 11-9, 11-8 (45m) [4] Shehab Essam (EGY) bt [Q] Emyr Evans (WAL) 3-1: 12-10, 10-12, 11-5, 11-5 [3] Youssef Soliman (EGY) bt Ammar Altamimi (KUW) 3-1: 15-13, 11-13, 11-5, 11-8 [6] Geoffrey Demont (FRA) bt Addeen Idrakie (MAS) 3-1: 11-8, 8-11, 11-7, 11-6 (55m) [WC] Brian Byrne (IRL) bt [8] Mohd Syafiq Kamal (MAS) 3-0: 11-7, 11-6, 11-9 [2] Mazen Gamal (EGY) bt [Q] Sean Conroy (IRL) 3-0: 8-11, 11-5 ret. *2017 Virginia Squash Racquets Association Richmond Open* *Final* [2] Rowan Elaraby (EGY) bt [1] Nicole Bunyan (CAN) 3-0: 11-6, 12-10, 11-6 *Semi-Final* [1] Nicole Bunyan (CAN) bt [5] Maria Toorpakai Wazir (PAK) 3-2: 4-11, 2-11, 12-10, 11-9, 11-5 [2] Rowan Elaraby (EGY) bt Anna Kimberley (ENG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-4, 11-4 *Quarter-Final* [1] Nicole Bunyan (CAN) bt [8] Lume Landman (RSA) 3-1: 4-11, 11-7, 12-10, 11-5 [5] Maria Toorpakai Wazir (PAK) bt [4] Sadia Gul (PAK) 3-0: 11-4, 12-10, 11-3 Anna Kimberley (ENG) bt [3] Enora Villard (FRA) 3-1: 7-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-8 [2] Rowan Elaraby (EGY) bt [7] Elani Landman (RSA) 3-0: 11-5, 11-9, 11-3 *First Round* [1] Nicole Bunyan (CAN) (bye) [8] Lume Landman (RSA) bt Eunice Tan (MAS) 3-0: 11-0, 11-2, 11-1 [5] Maria Toorpakai Wazir (PAK) bt Low Wee Nee (MAS) 3-0: 11-9, 11-6, 11-6 [4] Sadia Gul (PAK) (bye) [3] Enora Villard (FRA) (bye) Anna Kimberley (ENG) bt [6] Diana Garcia (MEX) 3-2: 7-11, 5-11, 11-5, 11-6, 11-5 [7] Elani Landman (RSA) bt Tiffany Hau (USA) 3-0: 11-5, 11-5, 11-8 [2] Rowan Elaraby (EGY) (bye) *2017 Czech International Championship* *Final* [1] Amina Yousry (EGY) bt [3] Tinne Gilis (BEL) 3-0: 11-6, 11-7, 11-8 *Semi-Final* [1] Amina Yousry (EGY) bt [4] Tessa ter Sluis (NED) 3-0: 11-4, 11-7, 11-3 [3] Tinne Gilis (BEL) bt Lisa Aitken (SCO) 3-1: 11-9, 9-11, 11-7, 11-8 *Quarter-Final* [1] Amina Yousry (EGY) bt Ali Hemingway (WAL) 3-0: 11-5, 11-1, 14-12 [4] Tessa ter Sluis (NED) bt [8] Eva Feřteková (CZE) 3-0: 11-4, 11-9, 11-7 [3] Tinne Gilis (BEL) bt [7] Farah Momen (EGY) 3-0: 11-3, 11-6, 11-4 Lisa Aitken (SCO) bt Kace Bartley (ENG) 3-1: 11-7, 11-8, 9-11, 11-6 *First Round* [1] Amina Yousry (EGY) bt Elspeth Young (SCO) 3-0: 11-9, 11-8, 11-8 Ali Hemingway (WAL) bt [5] Marija Shpakova (SUI) 3-1: 11-4, 11-13, 11-5, 11-4 [8] Eva Feřteková (CZE) bt Sanne Veldkamp (NED) 3-0: 11-8, 11-2, 11-6 [4] Tessa ter Sluis (NED) bt Nia Davies (WAL) 3-0: 11-9, 11-8, 11-4 [3] Tinne Gilis (BEL) bt Zuzana Kubáňová (CZE) 3-0: 11-6, 11-8, 11-5 [7] Farah Momen (EGY) bt [WC] Tereza Svobodova (CZE) 3-0: 11-7, 11-5, 11-9 Kace Bartley (ENG) bt [6] Nadia Pfister (SUI) 3-0: 11-6, 11-7, 11-6 Lisa Aitken (SCO) bt [2] Anna Serme (CZE) 3-0: 11-9, 11-6, 11-8 *2017 BCS Russian Open* *Final* [1] Adam Murrills (ENG) bt [Q] Miko Äijänen (FIN) 3-0: 11-9, 11-5, 11-5 (35m) *Semi-Final* [1] Adam Murrills (ENG) bt [4] Daniel Poleshchuk (ISR) 3-1: 11-4, 6-11, 11-3, 11-3 (40m) [Q] Miko Äijänen (FIN) bt [2] Jami Äijänen (FIN) 3-1: 7-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-6 (40m) *Quarter-Final* [1] Adam Murrills (ENG) bt [Q] Laurence Green (ENG) 3-0: 11-6, 11-6, 11-8 (45m) [4] Daniel Poleshchuk (ISR) bt [8] Michael Babra (SWE) 3-0: 11-1, 11-3, 11-5 (40m) [Q] Miko Äijänen (FIN) bt [5] Roee Avraham (ISR) 3-2: 9-11, 11-8, 12-10, 11-8 (45m) [2] Jami Äijänen (FIN) bt [Q] Owain Taylor (WAL) 3-1: 11-7, 11-8, 7-11, 11-9 (40m) *First Round* [1] Adam Murrills (ENG) bt Matthew Broadberry (ENG) 3-1: 14-12, 11-13, 11-4, 11-8 (55m) [Q] Laurence Green (ENG) bt [6] David Clegg (AUS) 3-0: 12-10, 11-9, 11-7 (25m) [8] Michael Babra (SWE) bt [WC] Konstantin Kostrykin (RUS) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 11-5 (25m) [4] Daniel Poleshchuk (ISR) bt Marc ter Sluis (NED) 3-1: 11-5, 11-3, 10-12, 11-7 (42m) [Q] Miko Äijänen (FIN) bt [3] Rui Soares (POR) 3-0: 11-5, 11-9, 11-9 (37m) [5] Roee Avraham (ISR) bt [Q] Roman Fetisov (RUS) 3-0: 11-6, 11-5, 11-8 (24m) [Q] Owain Taylor (WAL) bt [7] Adrian Ostbye (NOR) 3-1: 8-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-3 (45m) [2] Jami Äijänen (FIN) bt Yannik Omlor (GER) 3-2: 12-10, 9-11, 7-11, 11-6, 11-1 (57m) 4698 Tue, 18 Apr 2017 11:16:37 +0100 Bellevue Classic Set to Become Most Lucrative 16-Man Main Draw Event Ever #PSAWorldTour World No.1 Gregory Gaultier will head an international draw at the Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic as he vies for a share of the lucrative $150,000 prize fund - a record amount on offer for a 16-man main draw squash tournament - between May 16-20. Held at the Boys and Girls Club Hidden Valley Field House in Bellevue, Washington, Gaultier will be returning to the city where he claimed the biggest title of his career - the PSA Men’s World Championship - with victory over former World No.3 Omar Mosaad back in 2015 at the Meydenbauer Center in what was the first time that a United States city had hosted the World Championship.With 16 different nationalities represented across both the main and qualifying draws, the Bellevue Classic promises to showcase some of the world’s best players during the five-day tournament, with the likes of three-time World Champion Ramy Ashour, World No.5 Marwan ElShorbagy and former World No.1 James Willstrop all involved in a top-class draw. Title sponsor Pacific Market International has also been joined in the tournament's portfolio of sponsors by multinational technology giants Microsoft, a move which has enabled the tournament to put on the record amount of prize money on offer. "We’re delighted to host such a strong lineup and are excited to see that five of the world’s top 10 players have committed to appearing at the tournament," said Tournament Promoter Shabana Khan. "Bellevue made history in 2015 by being the first city in the United States to host the Men’s World Championship and we are pleased to once again enter the squash history books with the incredible $150,000 prize purse on offer to a 16-man draw. We would like to thank all of our sponsors and partners for making this possible. "Bringing Microsoft on board alongside title sponsor Pacific Market International is a huge boost for the tournament and we look forward to working closely with our sponsors over the coming weeks." "Bellevue has a thriving squash scene which has seen tremendous growth in recent years and we are excited to welcome a number of the world’s top players to the city for what promises to be a thrilling tournament." The qualifying stages of the Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic, PSA M100 tournament will take place between May 14-15, with the main draw being held between May 16-20. Tickets for the Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic start from $80 and can be purchased <a href="">here.</a> *2017 Pacific Market International Bellevue Squash Classic – Entry List* 1) Gregory Gaultier (FRA) 2) Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) 3) Ali Farag (EGY) 4) James Willstrop (ENG) 5) Ramy Ashour (EGY) 6) Tarek Momen (EGY) 7) Daryl Selby (ENG) 8) Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 9) Borja Golan (ESP) 10) Max Lee (HKG) 11) Stephen Coppinger (RSA) Wildcard) Dylan Cunningham (USA)* The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on Eurosport Player. <a href="">FIND OUT MORE</a>* The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on SQUASHTV. <a href="">FIND OUT MORE</a> 4697 Tue, 18 Apr 2017 10:33:07 +0100 El Gouna Finals: Sobhy Says #CommentsFromTheCouch After a long week of squash, we were down to the final two - Greg vs. Karim and Nour vs. Raneem. Both players in the men’s event were vying for their first El Gouna Open title while Nour and Raneem were looking to be crowned the Women’s World Champion. We didn’t get any epic encounters but we sure saw who was king and queen of the squash world! Here are my comments on the finals... 20170417145001_17EG31540.JPG *Greg bt Karim* Take a bow, Greg. Take a bow! Throughout the week Greg displayed a masterclass of squash. He was untouchable - just on a different level than the rest of the players. It was incredible to watch. Before I start praising Greg, let me just mention a few things about his opponent, Karim. Karim is an unbelievably talented player. He is the world champion and next month’s World #1 - which he fully deserves in my opinion. The baby-faced assassin has transformed his game and demeanor to become one of the classiest players on Tour with the silkiest backhand drop in the game! While Karim had been dominant in all his previous rounds, the final was all about Greg Gaultier. He was the one in control, attacking beautifully, mixing up the pace and varying the height - while Karim always seemed a touch off. We all know this wasn’t Gawad’s best performance. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that out, but it was due to Gaultier putting him under so much pressure. Karim was never able to get into his game and get in front to attack. It’s a dejecting situation to be in - and I know! Greg knows how to completely break your spirit and make you feel hopeless and two thing stood out above all other. First, Gaultier’s lines down the backhand side - there were so tiiiiiight! He had Karim forced into the back corner before attacking with lovely straight drops and kills. Second - Gaultier’s mental performance. He was unbelievably solid. You could see in his eyes that he was on a mission and there was no stopping him. Truly, I am in awe of the Frenchman. I’m bowing down to you from my couch in Sea Cliff, NY. Greg Gaultier, you are the ultimate GOAT in squash! 20170417145028_17EG31077.JPG *Sherbini bt Raneem* Well if you’re only going to win one title the entire season, you’d want to win the World Championship. That’s exactly what Nour El Sherbini did. She is only 21 and has just won her second world championship title in a row! What was I doing at 21? Definitely not winning a world championship title. Nour was sublime - as if she wasn’t playing well enough, she decided to save her best squash for the finals. Raneem on the other hand, looked nervous and lacking a bit of confidence. The match started off with the two ladies trading points with short, sharp rallies. Sherbini was always a little bit ahead and looking more confident in every game in comparison to Raneem who faded in and out of rallies. First game Sherbini was 9-5 up, second game 9-6 up, and third game 8-5 up. It sure makes it a lot harder to win games when you dig yourself a hole like that. However, never underestimate Raneem when she is behind because she is lethal at coming back. I felt like Raneem played her best squash when she was down in each game - tactically she was playing smarter by hitting to Sherbini’s forehand and exposing her game, and she was hitting some lovely winners but it wasn’t enough and Sherbini was the more consistent and confident player. Raneem had moments of brilliance, but then would carelessly shank balls into the tin giving Sherbini easy points. Even Raneem’s body language seemed a bit off. It’s tough to watch because we all know how amazing Raneem can be, but maybe that’s what pressure can do to a player. Plus, you are playing against an opponent who is playing phenomenally. That crosscourt forehand nick at 9-9 in the third by Sherbini was ridiculous. I’ve always envisioned myself being able to do that too, but it usually results in me shanking the ball in the bottom of the tin - I’ll get it one day. Unbelievable stuff by Nour El Sherbini. Hats off to you! I remember my first world junior championship in Chennai, India where Sherbini was this tiny little 13 year old and I was 16 thinking I was a young player. Sherbini won the title that year and I was just thinking to myself, who is this random girl? *Round Up* A few final words from yours truly now that the tournament is over. Since I have been completely crippled and spending the majority of my time on the couch, PSA asked if I was interested in doing some #CommentsFromTheCouch. Of course, I had to take up this opportunity. Not only did this allow me to stay active in the squash community, but it was a cool change of perspective to comment on my fellow peers. As a player, we compete in tournaments and always see our match write-ups by the standard squash bloggers or writers, but never do we get an actual player’s perspective. I lack in subtlety, so my perspective and comments are very crude and a lot more blunt than other players, which I’m sure you've gathered. This is my personality type and hopefully those who know me know that I like to joke around and can see the entertainment, humour, and sarcasm in my writing. If you could not pick up on it, then that’s your own fault for being so dim-witted. I’m well aware that I shredded some players, and I apologize if you were offended (hopefully you found it funny instead), but I also praised a lot of players as well. Life is all about balance, and when I get back on tour, I’m sure you’ll all have plenty of chances to shred my squash. Until next time! Amanda Sobhy 4696 Mon, 17 Apr 2017 14:46:47 +0100 El Sherbini Retains Women’s World Championship Crown with Win Over El Welily Egypt’s first ever female squash World Champion Nour El Sherbini successfully defended her Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship title after defeating compatriot Raneem El Welily to take the honours in El Gouna, Egypt. Held at the New Marina against the backdrop of Egypt’s Red Sea, El Sherbini - who defeated Laura Massaro 12 months ago to become the youngest Women’s World Champion of all time - was in spell-binding form to dispatch a slightly nervy El Welily, who was appearing in her second World Championship final. The 21-year-old hit her targets well and never allowed fellow Alexandrian El Welily to get into her game, with El Sherbini closing the win out by an 11-8, 11-9, 11-9 scoreline to etch her name into the history books once more. El Sherbini’s victory brings a six-month title drought to an end and it is her first major title since she lifted her first World Championship title in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia a year ago.20170414214739_17EG31077.JPG"I'm over the moon, two or three months ago I wouldn't have imagined that I would have won because I haven't won a [major] title this season," said El Sherbini. "It felt like like I wasn't going to win this season anymore, but once I knew that it was going to be in Egypt, I was so excited and I wanted to come and play in El Gouna. "I'm really happy to win in front of my home crowd and it's never easy to play Raneem. I've grown up learning a lot from her and she's told me a lot of things off court and on court. She's the best ‘sister’ I could ever have besides my squash career and I am really thankful for everything she did for me." Result - Final: Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship [1] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt [3] Raneem El Welily (EGY) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 11-9 (40m) 4695 Fri, 14 Apr 2017 21:46:09 +0100 Gaultier Beats Gawad in El Gouna International to Lift Fourth Successive Title #PSAWorldTour French World No.1 Gregory Gaultier lifted his fourth successive PSA World Tour title after the 34-year-old defeated World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad 3-0 in the final of the 2017 El Gouna International Squash Open, World Series tournament held in the New Marina on the banks of Egypt’s Red Sea. Gaultier, who will lose his World No.1 ranking to Gawad next month despite the win, fell in last year’s final to World No.3 Mohamed ElShorbagy, but made amends in the last stage of the 2017 instalment with the sort of imperious display that has seen him lose just once this year. The charismatic Frenchman played at an unrelenting pace throughout the 51-minute encounter and gave Gawad no chance to utilise his shot-making talents as he powered to an 11-6, 11-8, 11-7 victory to lift his 38th career PSA World Tour title and become the first non-Egyptian winner of the World Series tournament. It’s Gaultier’s fourth successive PSA World Tour title after wins at the Swedish Open, Windy City Open and British Open and his current unbeaten run of 19 matches is the longest of his glittering 17-year career. The victory also sees Gaultier finish second on the Men’s PSA Road to Dubai Standings, just five points behind Gawad, despite having played one tournament less. Only the top eight players on the Standings qualify for a coveted berth in the season-ending PSA Dubai World Series Finals - which take place between June 6-10 - and defending champion Gaultier will be one of the strong favourites to retain his title. <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Class, just class from Gaultier!<a href=""></a></p>— PSA World Tour (@PSAWorldTour) <a href="">April 14, 2017</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script> "I knew it was going to be an unbelievable match, we're both fighting to get that World No.1 spot," said Gaultier. "He took it from me yesterday, so all credit to him. Being World No.1 is not just about one tournament, it's a 12 month thing and he's always been a talented player. This is only one match, I'm grateful to win, to be that sharp at the moment and beat Karim. "I'm just doing the right things, I'm quite relaxed on court and I've just been focused on what I have to do. After Christmas I had a good break and had some good preparation and I told myself to start from scratch again at the Tournament of Champions. That's what I did and now things are working great for me and I'm going to keep playing as much as I can." Gawad, who will take the World No.1 spot next month due to his points average over the last 12 months being higher than Gaultier’s, admitted that he found it difficult to focus mentally during the fixture. "I think my defeat today is based on two factors, one, Greg was playing incredibly well tonight, like he’s been since the beginning of the season," said the 25-year-old. "The second factor is the mental point of view. The fact I heard that I was going to be World No.1 next month last night was a great news. I tried to keep focus, but so many people were sending me congratulations last night. "I’m still learning. This is the first time this is happening to me, and I think that I am gaining the experience that will allow me to not feel so much pressure next time around. I was hoping to play my best squash here, but hopefully next time." <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Here's how 2017 <a href="">@ElGounaSquash</a> champion Gregory Gaultier lifted his fourth successive PSA World Tour title! <a href=""></a></p>— PSA World Tour (@PSAWorldTour) <a href="">April 14, 2017</a></blockquote> <script async src="//" charset="utf-8"></script> *Result - Final: 2017 El Gouna International Squash Open* [3] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt [2] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) 3-0: 11-6, 11-8, 11-7 (51m) 4693 Fri, 14 Apr 2017 20:00:30 +0100 ‘No Pressure’ on El Sherbini Ahead of Women’s World Championship Final #PSAWorldTour Reigning World Champion Nour El Sherbini is excited to compete in tonight’s Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship as she looks to become the first female Egyptian ever to lift the prestigious title - with World No.4 Raneem El Welily standing in her way. El Sherbini, 21, became the youngest ever Women’s World Champion 12 months ago when she recovered from two games down to beat World No.2 Laura Massaro in the final, becoming the first female Egyptian squash World Champion in the process. Despite her status as the defending champion, El Sherbini says that she is not feeling the pressure as she aims to retain her crown. "I don’t have any pressure on me, it’s just one match and that’s it," said the World No.1. "I’m just enjoying my squash and trying to play the best I can. I’ve been really excited from the first match and I’m looking forward to this match. It’s another final, another big tournament. "There’s just one last push and that’s it, so I’m going to give it everything. It would mean everything to take the title back to Alexandria. I’ve been waiting the whole season for this tournament. "20170414135420_Sherbini-Worlds-SF.JPGHer World Championship win in April last year saw her top the World Rankings the following month, but she has lifted just one title since at the Carol Weymuller Open in October. However, El Sherbini says that a slight adaptation to her game in recent months has led to her approaching her best squash over the last two months with only a defeat to El Welily preventing her from lifting the Windy City Open title in February. "I think that I’ve changed a lot of stuff in my game, I’ve been trying to improve a lot of stuff and I think I have been playing well since Chicago," El Sherbini said. "In every tournament, even if I haven’t won, like the British Open and the Windy City Open, I think I’ve been playing well. "In this tournament I also think I’m playing well match by match and I’m improving every match." El Welily leads the pair’s head-to-head record by seven wins to El Sherbini’s four - and the latter is expecting a fierce battle against her fellow Alexandrian as they face off for the biggest title on the Women’s Tour. "I think that both of us needed this really bad and we both want to win it. I think Raneem is playing so well and is in form now, so I’m sure it’s going to be a tough one. I just have to be focused from the start and I have to be prepared for everything. "It’s always tough playing Raneem and I always want to play well and try to get a few shots against her. I’m sure today is going to be very tough. "It really means a lot, I want it badly and I’m going to fight for it." Live coverage of the Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship commences from 20:30 local time (EET) on <a href="">SQUASHTV</a> and <a href="">Eurosport Player</a>. It will also be shown on the following broadcasters: <a href="" target="_blank">Astro</a> (Malaysia / Brunei) <a href="" target="_blank">Bein Sports</a> (Middle East / North Africa) <a href="" target="_blank">BT Sport</a> (United Kingdom) <a href="" target="_blank">DAZN</a> (Japan) <a href="" target="_blank">Eleven Sports Network</a> (Singapore / Taiwan) <a href="" target=“_blank”>Fox Sports Australia</a> (Australia) <a href="" target=“_blank”>MNC Indonesia</a> (Indonesia) <a href=""" target=“_blank”>Now TV</a> (Hong Kong) <a href="" target=“_blank”>Sky Sport NZ</a> (New Zealand) <a href="" target=“_blank”>Super Sport</a> (Sub-Saharan Africa) <a href="" target=“_blank”>Ten Sports</a> (Indian Subcontinent) <a href="" target="_blank">Truevisions</a> (Thailand) *Draw – Final: Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship* (Time is local EET) 20:30 [1] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) v [3] Raneem El Welily (EGY) 4692 Fri, 14 Apr 2017 13:51:37 +0100 PSA SQUASHTV Reaches 50 Million Views on YouTube Ahead of tonight’s Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship and Men’s El Gouna International Squash Open, PSA SQUASHTV, the official online television channel of the Professional Squash Association (PSA), has passed the 50 million views mark on video-sharing website YouTube - representing a 100 per cent increase since April 2015.  The channel - created on July 18, 2011 - showcases professional squash at its highest level and offers fans the opportunity to enjoy match highlights, event previews, event roundups and interviews with the stars of the PSA World Tour. With an average of 1.3M views per month and over 65,000 subscribers, the growth of the PSA's YouTube presence - part of a 65% increase year-on-year across the PSA’s social media channels - has played a significant role in exposing squash to new audiences around the world and looks certain to continue its exponential growth throughout 2017. "We have worked exceptionally hard to develop not only our YouTube channel, but our entire social media presence, throughout the past few years with the aim of bringing world class squash to the attention of sports fans across the globe," said PSA Head of PR & Media Nathan Clarke. "We are delighted with the growth that we have experienced, especially during the past twelve months, and we will continue to enhance and enrich our social media presence over the coming months to ensure squash fans are at the heart of the action on the PSA World Tour." Fans can subscribe to SQUASHTV’s YouTube channel at for unparalleled access to the world’s top players. Away from YouTube, SQUASHTV streams over 450 matches a year exclusively live for subscribers outside of Europe. Don’t miss a thing by signing up <a href="">here</a>. Eurosport Player is the home of live squash for European-based subscribers and subscriptions can be made <a href="">via their website</a>.20170414134537_PSA-SQUASHTV-50m-Views-Graphic.jpg?=undefined&x=0&y=0&w=356&o=608 4691 Fri, 14 Apr 2017 13:23:35 +0100 Semis Night El Gouna Comments From The Couch: Amanda Sobhy After rupturing her achilles during her encounter with Olivia Blatchford at the Ciudad de Floridablanca last month, American number one Amanda Sobhy has been sidelined for the remainder of this season. But the charismatic Boston-based lefty has been watching on with interest as the action in El Gouna - for the Orascom Development Women's World Championship and El Gouna International Men's Open - has been gracing the SquashTV screens. Here's her take on all of yesterday's action as the quarter-finals finished up in a dramatic day 20170414131553_17EG26946.JPGWhat an excitingly long day of watching squash! Truly these matches were a treat to watch. First off, thank you Mother Nature for not raining again. Secondly, last night showcased such a high level of squash - it was fantastic to watch. I love semi-final day as a spectator because you get the quality of squash that you would see in a final, but instead of only watching one match, you get to watch two! In this case, because it’s a joint men and women’s tournament, we got double the fun! Obviously, I would have loved to have been there competing, but here are my comments on semi-finals night *Greg bt Marwan* Greg was just too good tonight. I’m not even going to say anything bad about Marwan because he really couldn’t do much - Greg was so impressive. It’s remarkable. The closest the match got was in the first which Greg won 12-10. It was a nervy start for Marwan as he went down 6-0 quickly - I thought Greg was on bagel hunt! But in a blink of an eye, Marwan tied it up 6-6. Greg’s accuracy completely went out the window, his head was somewhere else, and all his shots were loose and in the middle of the court. Marwan finally relaxed and was finding his targets nicely and had opportunities to win rallies but clipped the top of the tin to lose the first. After that, it was all about Greg. He came back looking much more relaxed and at ease. He varied his shots and pace beautifully and made Marwan do a ton of work. I’m sure he’ll be feeling that tomorrow! Greg was always ahead in the last two games with Marwan pulling out every move in the book to buy himself time, catch his breath, and break up Gaultier’s rhythm, but it wasn’t enough. Gaultier was in the zone - moving like a dream, unbelievably accurate, and hitting winners left and right. As if that wasn’t demoralizing enough, Greg won the match by drilling Marwan in the back with the ball. Poor guy. Rough night for him. However, don’t you love Gaultier’s post match dance celebrations? It’s something I look forward to nowadays after he wins. *Karim bt Fares* Am I the only one who had no idea Karim would become the new World No.1 come May 1st if he won this match? No wonder he looked so relieved after winning! After all, Fares came out of the blocks firing, I was impressed with how he played. You couldn’t have gotten a more perfect game first game from Fares - so much confidence in his shots and moving onto the ball so quickly. Karim responded nicely in the second game and changed up his tactics to slow down the pace and take away Fares’s weapons, which worked brilliantly. The third was make or break and Fares will be disappointed after losing multiple game balls. He let Karim back into the game - both were playing at a ridiculously fast pace and hit some unreal winners, especially in the backhand front corner, but it was Karim who came out on top in the end. Massive congratulations to Karim for putting on a class performance. *Sherbini bt Nouran* Joey Barrington has been calling Nouran “The Terminator” for the relentless pace she’s been playing throughout this tournament. I think that name suits her perfectly. She has been demolishing her opponents left and right and so I was completely shocked when Sherbini went 2-0 up in about 20 minutes. Sherbini was on another level - she mixed up the pace with beautiful holds and backhand drops, and never allowed Gohar to get into the metronomic rhythm that she loves. At 10-8 up in the 3rd game, I thought it was all over for Nouran. I was dead wrong. That girl is a fighter and turned up the dial to save 5 match balls and win the 3rd game 15-13 on a Sherbini tin. Gohar just ripped winner and winner with her forehand and backhand kills, and her boasts. It was some gutsy stuff. The fourth was nip and tuck all the way through at an unbelievably fast pace and high tempo. Gohar was hitting sublime winners towards the business end of the game to bring it to 9-9, but with a rare tin on a backhand kill followed by a winner from Sherbini, it was Sherbini's win. Let me tell you, the women’s game has completely stepped it up since the change in the lower tin, and are now playing attacking fast paced squash. It’s such a treat to watch while injured. *Raneem bt Camille* Another fantastic match to end the night. I’m sure Camille was feeling the effects of yesterday’s late night match on the normal courts. It was a very fair and clean match between the two, which allowed for the squash to shine through. Raneem dominated the first game being the player in control and making Camille do a ton of work (this is why we do ghosting during training), but Camille returned the favour by taking the second game. She was the one putting in some beautiful volley drops and cross court flicks and the third could have gone either way - it was so close. There was some great squash being showcased by the two ladies with variety in shots, height, and pace, but Raneem took the game 12-10. Raneem was cool, calm, collected and on a roll and Camille couldn't find an answer. It was a good day in the office for Raneem and Egypt. _*The Finals*_ *Greg vs. Karim* These two players are arguably the best players on Tour at the moment. You have the final between the current World #1 and next month’s World #1. It can’t get any better than this! Can Karim channel his inner baby-faced assassin or will Greg do another victory dance? Neither player haswon this event yet, so I’m sure they will be giving everything they have to win the title! *Sherbini vs. Raneem* Wow - tough one. One thing I am certain about- There will be an Egypt World Champion! :) 4690 Fri, 14 Apr 2017 13:13:35 +0100