Camille Serme (FRA) bt  Amanda Sobhy (USA) 3-2: 6-11, 11-4, 5-11, 12-10, 11-9 (63m)
Five months after meeting in a high octane encounter at the 2015 Qatar Classic which went all the way to the wire Camille Serme and Amanda Sobhy once again locked horns in a thrilling five-game encounter during the quarter-finals of the 2016 Windy City Open, when it was Frenchwoman Serme who triumphed 11-9 in the fifth once again.
In Qatar Sobhy had witnessed a 2-1 game lead vanish and lightening struck twice for the American World No.7 as she once again watched on as Serme showed impressive heart and determination to come through a tense tie-break scenario in the fourth game to force a decider in a back-and-forth battle.
Sobhy got off to the perfect start in the first game as her attacking play and aggressive hitting reaped rewards but the momentum was turned upside down in the second when it was Serme who dictated play, stepping up the court to take time away from the Harvard-graduate and level the match 1-1.
It swung back Sobhy’s way in the third before a tense and nervy fourth game followed, where a missed drop shot at 7-7 gave Serme the impetus to drive ahead, eventually levelling at 2-2 at the fourth time of asking.
The fifth was a rollercoaster from start to finish – with neither player ever more than two points in front as they battled and fought for each shot but it was Serme’s unyielding retrieving that eventually made the difference as she consigned Sobhy to a second consecutive 11-9 defeat in the fifth.
With the scoreboard locked in at two-games apiece and 5-5 in the decider the duo entered into a lengthy rally which was finished off by Serme after she struck an exquisitely precise forehand drop which Sobhy was powerless to retrieve. While the match continued to be closely fought to the end that shot highlighted Serme’s confidence and composure to go for the winner as soon as the opportunity presented itself.
Shot Of The Match
Sobhy pulled out a rip-roaring backhand slam into the front right hand nick at 4-2 in the third game than symbolised all that is good about the American’s game – pace, power, control and divesting fishing instincts.
Camille Serme: “She’s on home soil. Meant a lot. I had to fight very hard – knew it was going to be a big battle. In these kind of matches are just received to get through.
“I was trying to run as hard as possible and give it my all – I was thinking about Mathieu’s play yesterday.”
Amanda Sobhy: “I’m really disappointed with how that went tonight – I lost 11-9 in fifth the last time we played and I had hoped I could reverse it tonight.
“She’s an unbelievable fighter and put me under so much pressure out there. I lost to the better player today.”