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WindyCity Open: El Sherbini Beats Massaro In 3

[5] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt [1] Laura Massaro (ENG) 3-0: 11-7, 11-9, 11-9 (35m)

Egyptian Nour El Sherbini underlined her position as the in-form force on the Women’s PSA World Tour as she produced a masterclass performance to beat pre-tournament favourite and World No.1 Laura Massaro in the semi-finals of the 2016 Windy City Open presented by Guggenheim Partners and Equitrust Life Insurance Company to reach her second consecutive PSA World Series tournament final.

El Sherbini claimed the first major World Series title of her career when she won the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions in January and she looked every inch the would-be Windy City Open winner as she produced a performance of high intelligence and maturity, that belied her tender age of just 20, to follow up her ugly impressive 3-0 quarter-final victory over Nicol David with another hugely impressive straight-games victory.

All three games were nip and tuck, with El Sherbini’s penchant for flair helped her keep the ever-tenacious Massaro at arms length to go 2-0 up. It was Massaro who tok the impetus in the third, surging out to a 7-2 advantage, before El Sherbini regathered her composure to produce some spellbinding winners to overturn the deficit and take the match on her second match ball.

Key Moment
At 3-7 down in the third game El Sherbini produced two sumptuous backhand winners in succession to remind her accuracy and overturn the defect before taking the game. Has Massaro got onto the scoreboard the Englishwoman’s notorious ability to fight through the physical pain could have seen the match swing on its head in a fourth game scenario.

Shot Of The Match
El Sherbini’s backhand was on fire throughout the encounter and none more so was it evident than when she struck a simply stunning backhand volley crosscourt into the nick to take the second game and open up a 2-0 lead.

Player Comments
Nour El Sherbini: “I have been struggling with a flu so I really did not expect to reach the final but I think I played perfect today.

“Because I was struggling with my breathing I was going for every shot and thankfully they were going in and there were few errors – I maybe need to have a flu at every tournament!

“I love to attack and take the ball short in the front court so I was just doing what I love to do out there. She was getting a lot of back so I was lucky to win 3-0 in the end – normally when I play Laura it is a tough five-game match so to win 3-0 is an achievement that I’m definitely proud of.

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