The quarter-finals of the 2018-2019 PSA World Championships presented by the Walter Family begins today as the competition begins to heat up at Chicago’s Union Station.
Action begins at 12:00 local time (UTC-6) when Hong Kong’s Annie Au takes on Egypt’s World No.4 Nour El Tayeb for a place in the semi-finals. They are followed on court by an all Egyptian battle between Marwan ElShorbagy and Tarek Momen.
In the later session, reigning World Champions Raneem El Welily and Mohamed ElShorbagy will both be in action as they face Nouran Gohar and Miguel Rodriguez, respectively.
Matches from the glass court inside Union Station will be live on SQUASHTV (rest of world), Eurosport Player (Europe only) and Facebook (excluding Europe and Japan).
Can't watch the action? You can also follow the live scores from Union Station.
El Tayeb Powers Past Au
Egypt’s World No.4 Nour El Tayeb took just 25 minutes to power past Hong Kong’s Annie Au and reach the semi-finals of the PSA World Championships.
The Cairo-born Egyptian was in mercurial form to ensure that her record for not dropping a game in Chicago this year continues as she dismantled the Hong Kong No.1 to reach the last four for the second year running.
Au was unable to continue the form that saw her knock out former World Champion Laura Massaro in the last round as El Tayeb in attacking form to claim an 11-5, 11-7, 11-6 win.
She will now face either Raneem El Welily or Nouran Gohar for a place in the final.
“For me anyone who beats Laura, I worry,” said the 25-year-old Egyptian.
“Last time I played Laura was a few months ago and I lost in three, so anyone who beats Laura scares me, but I was ready for it. I tried to take away all the time for her, because she hits so many lobs.
“I’m very happy with how I played and very happy to be in the semi-finals.
“I was trying to play at a faster pace than I normally do, I was trying to go for winners and make the court as big as possible for her.
“I hope I can become more relaxed now that I have made it to my second semi-final in a row and I’m excited for whoever I play next.”
 Nour El Tayeb (EGY) bt  Annie Au (HKG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-7, 11-6 (25m)
Mighty Momen Takes Out ElShorbagy
Egypt’s World No.3 Tarek Momen was in blistering form to take out compatriot and last year’s PSA World Championship runner-up Marwan ElShorbagy in straight-games and reach his second semi-finals at the tournament.
Going into the match, the head-to-head record was heavily in favour of ‘The Viper’, with a 4-1 advantage, and Momen did not disappoint as he continued his impressive form to conquer the younger ElShorbagy in 33 minutes.
Beautiful stuff from
TkMomen</a>!<br><br>The Viper has been on his game here against <a href="https://twitter.com/maelshorbagy?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">maelshorbagy in the
PSAWorldChamps</a> quarters <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/SquashSupers?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#SquashSupers</a> <a href="https://t.co/l7J2OXXyFO">pic.twitter.com/l7J2OXXyFO</a></p>— PSA World Tour (PSAWorldTour) February 28, 2019
Momen – who is one of the front runners for the men’s crown – played out a gruelling five-game battle with compatriot Mohamed Abouelghar in the last round, but he showed no signs of fatigue as he executed his game plan to perfection to condemn ElShorbagy to an 11-5, 11-4, 11-6 defeat.
“I’m very happy with the way I played,” said the 31-year-old following his win.
“This result is more than I ever could have dreamed of, because I had a very tough five-game match with Abouelghar and to keep my hopes alive in this tournament, I needed an easier match today.
“Playing Marwan I knew it would never be easy because he is such a smart player on court, he’s really good with his racket and his movement. I knew I was going into a tough battle, so to come out as a 3-0 winner today is just beyond anything I imagined.
“Finally, I got to win in three. I’m also happy to be back in the semi-finals of the World Championship, the last time was 2015 also in the US, so I’m happy to be back.”
 Tarek Momen (EGY) bt  Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) 3-0: 11-5, 11-4, 11-6 (33m)
El Welily Title Defence Rolls On
Reigning World Champion Raneem El Welily continued her title defence in Chicago after overcoming compatriot Nouran Gohar in the quarter-finals.
The World No.1 got off to a quick start to take the opening game, before 21-year-old Gohar battled back with a strong performance to level the scores with an impressive second game.
"It's an absolute brute of a rally!"— PSA World Tour (@PSAWorldTour) February 28, 2019
RaneemElWelily</a> & <a href="https://twitter.com/NouranGohar?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">NouranGohar trade blows in all four corners
Tremendous stuff from the Egyptian duo #SquashSupers pic.twitter.com/Gy7Op2LZUC
However, the reigning World Champion was not going to let her title slip away easily and readjusted her tactics to power past Gohar in the last two games and reach the semi-finals.
She will now face compatriot and World No.4 Nour El Tayeb for a place in the final.
“I was a bit nervous to be honest,” said 30-year-old El Welily.
“Nouran and I have played many times this season, with the last being 10 days ago at the Nationals and she beat me, so I was a bit edgy at the start. But, I managed to push myself through the pressure to handle the situation that I was put in and I’m pleased with that.”
 Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt  Nouran Gohar (EGY) 3-1: 11-4, 6-11, 11-4, 11-2 (37m)
ElShorbagy Goes into ‘Beast Mode’ to Overcome Rodriguez
Egypt’s World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy displayed his title winning credentials after taking out Colombia’s World No.7 Miguel Rodriguez to reach the semi-finals inside Chicago’s Union Station.
The reigning World Champion was not letting his title go without a fight as he came from a game down to knock out Rodriguez in a tight four-game battle.
The ‘Colombian Cannonball’ contained ElShorbagy well with his quick attacking brand of squash to take the first game. However, a change of tactics from the experienced Egyptian saw him fight his way back into the contest.
From that moment on ElShorbagy was able to use his mental resilience to edge out the Colombian and take a 5-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-6 victory.
He will now face compatriot and World No.3 Tarek Momen in the last four on March 1.
“I actually think this is one of the best times he has played against me,” said the 28-year-old.
“From the first point I could see his focus and I knew that I was one for a battle tonight. I could see that if I needed to win a point then he wasn’t going to give it easy to me today. I had to win the point myself and I had to extend the rallies as much as possible. It was very tough playing him tonight and every point we played, physically and mentally, I had to get my tactics right after I lost that first game and I’m really glad I pulled through in the end.
“I felt he was a bit in front of me in that first game. He took the ball much earlier and I felt a bit passive and I needed to be a bit more proactive and take the ball a bit earlier.
“Palmer and me worked out a plan after that first game, and we needed to look at what was happening and that’s what you had to do. You go on with a game plan and if it’s not working then you have to get the next one on and tonight, I had to do that.”
 Mohamed ElShorbagy (EGY) bt  Miguel Rodriguez (COL) 3-1: 5-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-6 (61m)