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Farida Mohamed in action

CIB Black Ball Open: Day Three Morning - Player Reaction

Stay tuned as we bring you reaction from the players who are in action this morning on day three of the women’s CIB PSA Black Ball Squash Open Platinum event.

Here’s the schedule for this morning
(All times are local GMT+2)
11:00 Millie Tomlinson (ENG) v Farida Mohamed (EGY)
11:45 Sana Ibrahim (EGY) v Rowan Elaraby (EGY)
13:15 Julianne Courtice (ENG) v [6] Amanda Sobhy (USA)
14:00 Hollie Naughton (CAN) v Zeina Mickawy (EGY)

You can catch all the action live from the Black Ball Sporting Club on SquashTV, and the official Facebook page of the PSA World Tour (excluding Europe and Japan).

You can also keep up with the live scores from the event here.

Mohamed Begins Day with Win over Tomlinson

Egypt’s World No.34 Farida Mohamed is through to the last 16 at the Black Ball Open for the second time after overcoming England’s Millie Tomlinson with a 15-13, 5-11, 11-6, 11-4 victory.

The 19-year-old will move on to face either USA’s Amanda Sobhy or England’s Julianne Courtice in the next round.

“It feels amazing, I love this court and I’ve had so many good wins on it, so I was very excited to play today,” said Mohamed.

“It feels so much different [playing without goggles]. I feel so much more pressure, I feel I’m big now and it was easier when I was a junior because there was not so much pressure on me.

“I feel I’m going to do a lot of good things this year. I’m so excited to see what’s coming and I’m excited for tomorrow’s match. I hope I can play better squash than today, I wasn’t feeling very well on court, I didn’t find my game very well, so I hope it’s better tomorrow.”

Farida Mohamed (EGY) bt Millie Tomlinson (ENG) 3-1: 15-13, 5-11, 11-6, 11-4 (34m)

Elaraby Books RD3 Spot

World No.14 Rowan Elaraby moved through to the third round courtesy of a straight games victory over fellow Egyptian Sana Ibrahim.

Ibrahim claimed one of the biggest wins of her career in the previous round when she overcame Australia’s Donna Lobban and the 18-year-old tested Elaraby over the course of three closely-contested games.

But Elaraby, a two-time World Junior Champion, held firm to complete an 11-9, 13-11, 11-9 victory in 35 minutes which will see her play either Egypt’s Salma Any or Belgium’s Nele Gilis in the next round.

Reaction from Elaraby

“I wouldn’t say I’m really happy with my performance today, but I’m glad I kept it together and fought until the end.

“Sana played really well and every chance she got she used very well. I was really under pressure today. I couldn’t find my game plan or pace, I need to be more tough with my shots and my shot selection wasn’t very good today.

“I need to rewatch the match and see what I need to improve for the next match.”

Reaction from Ibrahim

“I can do better than this.

“I was playing a few nice rallies, but then I would make stupid errors, that’s not good enough.

“I was so happy to be called to come and play the tournament, I was called at 22:30 for the next day. But it means also that I’m not as prepared physically as I would like.

“And I saw it mentally as well. The first match I was mentally very fiery, but today, I didn’t have the same winning spirit. Still, my parents and my coach didn’t put me under any kind of pressure. They told me to just enjoy it, but I know I can do better than that.”

Rowan Elaraby (EGY) bt Sana Ibrahim (EGY) 3-0: 11-9, 13-11, 11-9 (35m)

Sobhy Charges Past Courtice

Amanda Sobhy in action

United States No.1 Amanda Sobhy earned her place in the last 16 after earning a straightforward 11-5, 11-7, 11-3 victory over England’s Julianne Courtice to ensure she will face Farida Mohamed next.

Sobhy’s sister, Sabrina, had already played two matches at this event including her second round defeat to World No.1 Nour El Sherbini yesterday, and Sobhy said that she had plenty of pent up energy after being forced to wait until day three to begin her event.

Reaction from Sobhy

“I think I was so antsy because I feel like I’m one of the last people to play.

“My sister’s out of the tournament, she’s already played two matches and I’m finally just starting. I was really, really excited and had so much pent up energy, so I was very happy to be out there.

“I’ve had some decent results [at the Black Ball Sporting Club] especially at the last one, so I’m coming off some good vibes which I’m excited about also. My dad lives between here and the tournament hotel, so it’s a home club type of vibe which is very nice. It makes me feel comfortable and happy to play.”

Reaction from Courtice

“With those girls it’s all about finding a way to go beyond matching them, matching them is not enough.

“It’s about finding a way to get on top of them. I tried to stick to the game plan but she is just too strong all around.

“I think I would have liked to be more adaptable today, the top players change their game and it’s hard to adapt and adjust.”

[6] Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Julianne Courtice (ENG) 3-0: 11-5, 11-7, 11-3 (26m)

Naughton Overcomes Injury to Halt Mickawy

Hollie Naughton in action

Canada’s Hollie Naughton overcame an ankle injury sustained in the opening game to get the better of Egypt’s Zeina Mickawy in four games.

The World No.20 required treatment from PSA physio Derek Ryan during the first game and in between games but recovered from a 12-10 defeat to complete a 3-1 triumph which will see her line up in the last 16 of this event for the second successive time.

Naughton will come up against either World No.3 Camille Serme or Egyptian Mayar Hany in the next round.

“I’m trying not to think about that [the injury] right now,” said Naughton afterwards.

“We’ll assess it after I’m done and I’ll try to prepare as best as I can for the next match. These things happen, you’ve just got to find a way and I guess adrenaline takes over and you forget about it for the time being.

“I just tried to enjoy what I was doing in there. I wanted to find the back corners, press up and use my physicality to create openings. I was quite happy with how I did that today, so hopefully I’ll take that onto tomorrow.

“I work on a game plan with my coaches and my sports psychologist who put a plan together, so that’s what I read over [in between matches]. I’m trying to get myself back into a good headspace and back onto the plan rather than getting distracted and losing my focus on what I want to do.”

Hollie Naughton (CAN) bt Zeina Mickawy (EGY) 3-1: 10-12, 14-12, 11-8, 11-5 (44m)

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