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Mohamed Abouelghar (left) and Mazen Hesham (right)

Channel VAS QF: Abouelghar Survives Comeback from Hesham

Egypt’s World No.8 Mohmaed Abouelghar held off a comeback from compatriot and World No.19 Mazen Hesham to book his place in the semi-finals of the Channel VAS Championships at St. George’s Hill.

Hesham caused an upset in the last round when he took out World No.7 Diego Elias, however, the talented Egyptian was unable to repeat that feat today as he succumbed to a focus Abouelghar in the fifth game.

Abouelghar was in complete control, quietly going about his business on court while Hesham was getting increasingly frustrated as the former claimed a 2-0 advantage.

The momentum switched completely in the third with Hesham taking full advantage of a mental lapse from his compatriot, who looked as though he saw the finish line too early in the match, to settle down in his game plan and play more relaxed squash to let his silky shots do the talking and claim the third for the loss of just three points.

Hesham kept that momentum on his side in the fourth to edge out Abouelghar once again and draw level, but it was the higher seeded Egyptian who got his game plan back to basics to straighten up his play and take an 11-8, 11-7, 3-11, 9-11, 11-7 victory in a bruising 78 minute battle.

He will now face Egypt’s World No.2 Mohamed ElShorbagy for a place in the final of the PSA World Tour Gold tournament tomorrow.

“We are in the same age group and I have grown up playing Mazen,” said 26-year-old Abouelghar afterwards.

“I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve played him, but it doesn’t matter how many times we play every time is different and you never know what he is up to. You still can’t read him even if you play him 100 times.

“I think I had a good start going 2-0 up and then I think I lost my length a little bit and he took advantage of it with his unbelievable skills and he made it really hard for me to get that momentum back.”

Result:
[5] Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) bt Mazen Hesham (EGY) 3-2: 11-8, 11-7, 3-11, 9-11, 11-7 (78m)

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