Last time at the Pyramids: Palmer Axes Gaultier to Take World Champs Crown
Squash returns to the Great Pyramid of Giza for the first time in a decade on Monday September 19 as the world’s leading stars head to Cairo for the 2016 Al Ahram Squash Open NEWGIZA, PSA M100 & PSA W100 tournaments.
With plenty of home interest in an event that features the likes of Men’s World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy, World No.5 Ramy Ashour, Women’s World No.1 Nour El Sherbini and World Junior Champion Nouran Gohar, the Al Ahram Open promises to be a compelling contest both for spectators at the venue and viewers on SQUASHTV and Eurosport Player.
Watch the Al Ahram Open Live
The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is upon us and there are more than 450 live games on SQUASHTV and Eurosport Player. To celebrate we’re offering you a great SQUASHTV deal – 50% off your first three months’ subscription. Just use code 50for3
The last time the Great Pyramid of Giza – one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World – provided a stunning backdrop for a professional squash tournament was the 2006 World Championship – and we’re having a look back at that thrilling week of action, which culminated in a climactic showdown between Australian David Palmer and Frenchman Gregory Gautier.
Gaultier had stunned the squash world in the previous round, beating defending World Champion and Egyptian icon Amr Shabana to book his place in a maiden World Championship final.
Palmer, meanwhile, was appearing in the sport’s most prestigious match for the second successive year, having lost to Shabana in the 2005 final, and overcame Gaultier’s compatriot, Thierry Lincou, in the last four.
It was Gaultier who stormed out of the traps to build up an early lead, with the then 23-year-old exhibiting some dazzling squash to go two games ahead.
Palmer fought back in the third to halve the deficit, but was powerless to stop a seemingly rampant Gaultier from going 10-6 up in the fourth, with the Frenchman holding four match balls in which to take the sport’s biggest prize.
However, a combination of nerves, inexperience and excitement caught up with Gaultier and Palmer pounced, eventually drawing level and forcing a decider after prevailing in a titanic 16-14 tie-break.
With Gaultier’s resistance broken, Palmer powered to victory in the fifth and final game for the loss of just two points, becoming World Champion for the second time, while the memory of 2006 would hang over Gaultier for most of the next decade, with three further World Championship final defeats coming in 2007, 2011 and 2013.
Gaultier finally ended his World Championship hoodoo last year though, beating World No.3 Omar Mosaad in emotional scenes to lift the most coveted title in squash.
The PSA World Tour's biggest-ever season is showing more than 450 live games on SQUASHTV. To celebrate we’re offering you a great deal – 50% off your first three months’ SQUASHTV subscription. Just use code 50for3 FINDOUTMORE