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Nour El Tayeb (right) and Jasmine Hutton (left) touch rackets on day two of the 2020 Manchester Open

Manchester Open RD1: El Tayeb Eases Past Hutton

World No.4 Nour El Tayeb got off to a confident start at the Manchester Open as she eased past England’s Jasmine Hutton by a 3-0 margin.

With World No.1 Nouran Gohar and World No.2 Nour El Sherbini absent in Manchester, there is a real chance for El Tayeb to make up some ground on her compatriots with a good showing at the first PSA World Tour event since March.

And the No.2 seed showed no signs of suffering from a slow return to action as she spent just 28 minutes on court during an 11-5, 11-4, 11-4 victory which will see her take on Australia’s Donna Lobban in the last 16.

Due to social distancing guidelines enforced at the tournament following the global COVID-19 pandemic, players are not allowed to have their coaching team on-site at all and are also required to have their own hotel rooms rather than sharing with their spouses.

As such, following the match El Tayeb took the opportunity to take on board some advice from husband Ali Farag – who was up next on court against Nathan Lake – and the 27-year-old admitted that she relished the chance to catch up with him

“I haven’t seen him for the last few days, so it’s nice to chat, I miss him,” said El Tayeb.

“I was just joking with him about the match, I thought I played well and he agreed, so it’s nice to get the reassurance from him that I did well today.

“It is different, I’m not going to lie, but it doesn’t bother me very much that there is no one watching. I knew Ali was in the venue, so I was a bit calm knowing that my family is around and I’m very happy to be playing again.

“I think I was impressed with how I was dealing with someone who I have never played before and barely watched. The first match for six months is obviously not easy for anyone, so I’m very happy to get the first win and hopefully I can keep playing well.

“There are plenty of other players, the tour is not just Nour and Nouran and I’m still the second seed. Hania [El Hammamy] won the last major, Camille before too and I haven’t won a major in a while. Two of the current in-form players are in the tournament, so I’d love to win it but I think it’s still a bit too early to think about that.”

[2] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) bt Jasmine Hutton (ENG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-7, 11-4 (28m)

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