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Egyptian El Welily kicked off day one

US Open Day 3: As It Happens

Day three means we’re into the second round where the action will now exclusively take place on the Glass Court.

With a place in the last eight at stake the matches are set to get even more intense.

Here’s what’s coming up:

Draw – Men’s 2016 Delaware Investments U.S. Open: Second Round
[1] Mohamed Elshorbagy (EGY) v Chris Simpson (ENG)
[Q] Diego Elias (PER) v [6] Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY)
[Q] Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) v Stephen Coppinger (RSA)
Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) v James Willstrop (ENG)

Draw – Women’s 2016 Delaware Investments U.S. Open: Second Round
[1] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) v [13] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG)
[Q] Salma Hany Ibrahim (EGY) v [8] Alison Waters (ENG)
[5] Raneem El Welily (EGY) v [10] Joelle King (NZL)
[11] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) v [3] Nicol David (MAS)

El Welily & King in battle

El Welily Wins High Quality Encounter With King

Raneem El Welily recovered from an emphatic first game defeat to turn her second round encounter against New Zealand’s Joelle King around and secure a place in the quarter-finals after a high quality four game encounter.

The Egyptian former World No.1 looked out of sorts in the opening game as King pounced, storming to a one game lead for the loss of just a solitary point. But El Welily, who has previously shown vulnerability when falling behind to lower ranked opposition, showed mental maturity as she readdressed the match, regaining focus and taking the new three games in succession to come through 3-1.

It sees her through to the last eight where she’ll hope to go better than he defeat to Nour El Tayeb in the same stage last year.

“It wasn’t easy today – I don’t think I’ve ever seen Joelle play as well before – it wasn’t easy at all,” said El Welily.

“All credit to her. But I think the difference was that I was playing like I didn’t want to lose, not playing like I wanted to win – that mental mindset was the difference.

“The competition now at the top is tough but I think we’re all enjoying it. All the matches at this stage are getting to be very close but it was great to play against Joelle again today and I really enjoyed it.”

[5] Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt [10] Joelle King (NZL) 3-1: 1-11, 11-9, 11-7, 11-8 (50m)

Willstrop v Abouelghar

Willstrop Comes Through Huge Test Against Abouelghar

After downing World No.3 Omar Mosaad in round one, England’s James Willstrop was forced to call on all his experience to endure he didn’t bow out of the 2016 US Open at the second hurdle, coming through a thrilling, high quality encounter with young Egyptian Mohamed Abouelghar.

Only one position separates the pair on the World Rankings but with Willstrop having topped the rankings in the past, many expected he would ease past the youngster but that illusion was quickly dispersed as Abouelghar came out firing, playing with fearless attacking intent from the off that unsettled WIllstrop, and he profited from that approach to take the first game and open up and unexpected advantage.

Willstrop managed to get back to parity after the second but Abouelghar showed no signs of fading away as he continued to fire in winners from all angles and take away Willstrop’s trademark controlling game style, never allowing the Englishman the time to dictate the play and control proceedings.

After taking the third game to go ahead for the first time in the match, Willstrop was then on the receiving end of an inspired passage of play that saw Abouleghar to 8-0 up in the fourth. With a bagel imminent however the younger man forced a few too many errors, but a fifth game was on the cards and it proved to be a continuation of what went before as both men produced high quality squash in all four corners.

After going 3-6 down Willstrop managed to finally assert himself on proceedings to scramble back to 7-7 and from then on it was his signature shot, the backhand drop, that made the difference to bring 70 thrilling minutes of squash to a close.

“That was an hour and a bit of frantic intensity,” said Willstrop. “Hats off to him he made me work so hard and I couldn’t find myself on there and that was all because of him.

“I’m so pleased to get through. I want to just keep on playing – I don’t want to stop. I feel in a bit of a groove so I was so pleased to get through at the end.

“I just had to try and have faith in what I can do. He outplayed me in the fourth and he was on course to being one of the best games anyone has ever played against me. Sometime you don’t have to change things, it’s about staying with it and that paid off in the end.

“I couldn’t get the ball off his racket in the middle area and he was playing excellent shots across me and got me on edge. I had to play very very well to beat him.

James Willstrop (ENG) bt Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) 3-2: 9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 5-11, 11-7 (70m)

Big celebration from the Englishman

Waters Wins Rollercoaster With Ibrahim

England’s Alison Waters came through an up and down rollercoaster encounter with Egyptian qualifier Salma Hany Ibrahim to secure her place in the quarter-finals of the 2016 US Open.

Waters found herself 0-5 down in the first game as the Egyptian, who beat Jenny Duncalf in the first round, fired in the ball from all angles but Waters came back with her own streak to take the game to a tie-break and set up what was to follow as the momentum swung back and forth, with neither player really settling into a rhythm.

In the second game it was Waters that went ahead 5-0, the taking the game 11-1, before finding herself significantly behind again in the third. With games going back and forth to set up a fifth, both players managed to up their quality levels and produce the best action of the match when it mattered.

They matched each other point for point until it was the Egyptian youngster who got first sight of the finishing line at 10-8. But Waters stood firm and displayed some typical English resolve to get back to parity and she then secured the win at the second time of asking, coming through 12-14, 11-1, 7-11, 11-4, 14-12.

“It was a tough game and it was hard to get into a rhyme – one game she was chopping it and the next I was in front so it was a case of trusting yourself.

“I just tried to keep hitting my targets and push until the end and luckily it was my day. I enjoyed it and was happy that it went the right way for me.”

[8] Alison Waters (ENG) bt [Q] Salma Hany Ibrahim (EGY) 3-2: 12-14, 11-1, 7-11, 11-4, 14-12 (63m)

Waters eyes up the drive

ElShorbagy Edges Simpson In Four

World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy came through a second mammoth battle in a row to keep his 2016 US Open campaign alive, eventually seeing off a hugely impressive Chris Simpson 3-1 to follow up his first round escape against Cesar Salazar.

ElShorbagy faced match ball against Salazar in round one but managed to do just enough to keep his event alive and he was up against it again today from the off, with Simpson, who has been progressing with each match over the past year, taking heart from Salazar’s exploits and really taking the play to ElShorbagy from the start.

The Englishman controlled the early going, using his backhand to perfection to hit exquisite lines and catch ElShorbagy flat. Simpson continued to apply the pressure, mixing up the pace, and he managed to take the first game in a tense tie-break and was unfortunate not to double his advantage in the second after just being edged out 9-11.

In the third ElShorbagy looked to be pulling away but Simpson mounted a huge charge to come back to 9-9, courtesy of a series of mammoth exchanges, and get momentum on his side but the 25-year-old Egyptian showed why he is top of the world rankings to come though a second edgy tie-breaker and get ahead for the first time – a blow that sapped the energy from Simpson’s legs as the Englishman fell away in the fourth as ElShorbagy secured his place in the last eight.

“I’m really happy to be in this tournament for another day,” said ElShorbagy afterwards.

“I was one point away from a first round exit so I was happy to be here today and I’m even luckier to now have another match to play in this tournament.

“Chris put all sorts of pressure on me and played great squash today and all credit to him. I managed to contain him at the crucial points in the third game and that made the difference in the end.

“The first round match was tough but I think it got a lot out of my system. You train to play five tough matches at every tournament – there can be no excuses. This week will be an interesting week for everyone and hopefully I can keep pushing and have a good tournament.”

[1] Mohamed Elshorbagy (EGY) bt Chris Simpson (ENG) 3-1: 10-12, 11-9, 12-10, 11-5 (64m)

ElShorbagy charges back

Coppinger Comes Through 80 Minute Marathon With Adnan

Friendly South African Stephen Coppinger came through a gargantuan battle with Malaysian Nafiizwan Adnan, winning a gritting 82minute battle 3-2, to triumph in their second round US Open encounter and secure his place in the quarter-finals of a PSA World Series tournament for the first time in three years.

Coppinger, who’s place at the tournament was cast in doubt due to Hurricane Matthew wreaking havoc in his home-state of Florida, came through a five game match with Scotland’s Alan Clyne to reach the second round and he was once again in the middle of a mammoth battle with the talented Adnan – who was eyeing a first ever World Series last eight appearance.

In what was a huge battle with massive ramifications for both players – with significant ranking points of offer for both – the play was dominated by lengthy exchanges that saw both probing and looking for a weakness to exploit. But with neither willing to give an inch it turned into a contest of attrition, with lengthy rallies only being punctuated by sublime winners or all or nothing errors.

After taking the first Coppinger found himself trailing 1-2 but profited when Adnan began to tire in the fourth and it was the Irish-born South African who was in the ascendency in the early stages of the fifth. But Adnan fought back to 8-8 and from there on the intensity went up another notch as both eyed the finish line and threw their all at it – only for Coppinger to edge it 11-9.

“I’m lucky to be here in the first place let alone be competing in a second match,” said Coppinger.

“So I’m thrilled with the win. I have plenty to work on squash wise, but I’m in there and that’s what counts at this point. He’s ranked below me and on paper I should have won easier – but what it says on paper and reality is different.

“That’s what sport is about so I’m just very pleased to win.”

Stephen Coppinger (RSA) bt [Q] Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) 3-2: 11-7, 5-11, 9-11, 11-4, 11-9 (82m)

Coppinger celebrates

David Downs El Tayeb In Five

Nicol David came back from the brink of elimination to keep her 2016 US Open campaign alive, recovering from being two games behind to 2015 runner-up Now El Tayeb to come through on the winning side of a 53 minute encounter.

Three-time champion David was caught flat footed in the first two games as El Tayeb dictated the play and hit winners for fun with David looking powerless to halt the charge.

But the third game was a different story as David began to find her range and use her supreme athletic condition to good effect, chasing down everything Tayeb could muster to get her name on the board and change the dynamic of the encounter.

It was the Malaysian who continued to enjoy the better of the exchanges in the fourth before a high quality fifth game followed that saw both engage in some well constructed and testing rallies, with both players being forced to find some of their best shots to nudge the scoreboard along before David made a late charge that ultimately secured her a place in the last eight, much to her relief.

“I’m over the moon,” said David.

“I wasn’t firing in the first game and a half and she made it very hard for me. I knew I had to fight all the way. I trained really hard over the summer during the off season and I wasn’t going to go down without a fight – I pushed to the limit and I’m really pleased to win that 3-2.

“I didn’t let up – I knew I wanted to keep going until the very end and that’s what I did.”

[3] Nicol David (MAS) bt [11] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) 3-2: 4-11, 9-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-7 (53m)

Big reaction from David

Results – Men’s 2016 Delaware Investments U.S. Open: Second Round – Top Half
[1] Mohamed ElShorbagy (EGY) bt Chris Simpson (ENG) 3-1: 10-12, 11-9, 12-10, 11-5 (64m)
[6] Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) bt [Q] Diego Elias (PER) 3-1: 3-11, 11-4, 11-4, 11-6 (48m)
Stephen Coppinger (RSA) bt [Q] Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) 3-2: 11-7, 5-11, 9-11, 11-4, 11-9 (82m)
James Willstrop (ENG) bt Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) 3-2: 9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 5-11, 11-7 (70m)

Draw – Men’s 2016 Delaware Investments U.S. Open: Second Round – Bottom Half
[4] Nick Matthew (ENG) v Simon Rösner (GER) – to be played October 11
Fares Dessouky (EGY) v Ali Farag (EGY) – to be played October 11
[5] Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) v Max Lee (HKG) – to be played October 11
[Q] Paul Coll (NZL) v [2] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) – to be played October 11

Results – Women’s 2016 Delaware Investments U.S. Open: Second Round – Top Half
[1] Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt [13] Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG) 3-1: 11-5, 11-4, 8-11, 11-6 (38m)
[8] Alison Waters (ENG) bt [Q] Salma Hany Ibrahim (EGY) 3-2: 12-14, 11-1, 7-11, 11-4, 14-12 (63m)
[5] Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt [10] Joelle King (NZL) 3-1: 1-11, 11-9, 11-7, 11-8 (50m)
[3] Nicol David (MAS) bt [11] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) 3-2: 4-11, 9-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-7 (53m)

Draw – Women’s 2016 Delaware Investments U.S. Open: Second Round – Bottom Half
[4] Nouran Gohar (EGY) v [14] Emily Whitlock (ENG) – to be played October 11
Donna Urquhart (AUS) v [7] Amanda Sobhy (USA) – to be played October 11
[6] Camille Serme (FRA) v [12] Annie Au (HKG) – to be played October 11
[9] Joshna Chinappa (IND) v [2] Laura Massaro (ENG) – to be played October 11

Magic Marwan

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