El Shorbagy Survives to Reach Main Draw
March 9, 2008, By Alan Thatcher for SquashTalk.com , Independent News; © 2007 SquashTalk LLC
ISS CANARY WHARF SQUASH CLASSIC - QUALIFYING FINALS - SUNDAY
Teenage Egyptian sensation Mohamed El Shorbagy held his nerve in a tense tiebreak to beat India’s Saurav Ghosal to reach the first round proper. World No.49 Ghosal began in fiery mood, reeling off the first six points of the match to establish an unassailable lead in the opening game. However, Shorbagy decided it was time to open his box of tricks and he took control of the match with some outrageous shots and breathtaking retrieving.
The 17-year-old Millfield student held the lead throughout he second and third games and looked poised for a comfortable victory as he led 9-5 in the fourth. However, Ghosal produced a succession of winners to draw level and take it to a tiebreak. Shorbagy held match ball at 11-10 but Ghosal continued to dig in despite the effects of an 95-minute match the previous day. Ghosal won the next two points to reach game ball at 12-11, but Shorbagy regained his composure to reel off the final three points to book a place in the first round after 53 minutes of breathtaking squash, full of stunning winners and incredible pick-ups from both players.
HUNGARIAN BREAKS THROUGH
Mark Krajcsak of Hungary produced a determined fightback and a spectacular finale to beat Simon Rosner in a marathon all-European encounter. Rosner appeared to have the match under control as he cruised through the opening two games, but he tired visibly as the feisty Krajcsak fought his way back. Showing no ill-effects of the leg wound of the previous day, Krajcsak drew level at two games all. Rosner seemed to rediscover his earlier form to lead 5-2 in the fifth, but Krajcsak summoned all his physical reserves to win the next six points. The score seesawed one way then the other, thanks to some astonishing, gruelling rallies suddenly terminated by some flat nicks, until it was 9-9 and time for the big points. Krajcsak moved to match ball with a stupendous volley following a massive rally, then buried a crosscourt volley-nick in sensational style to clinch victory after 73 minutes.
ENGLAND'S RYDER GETS THROUGH
England's Chris Ryder became the first qualifier to win through to the main draw of the ISS Canary Wharf Squash Classic by beating Australia's Scott Arnold.
The stylish Ryder, the Hertfordshire No.1, showed superb touch to negate the power of the tall, hard-hitting Australian and open up a two-game lead. Arnold played tighter, more disciplined squash to edge the third, but Ryder regained control in the fourth to cruise home for the loss of just one point.
Qualifying finals, Wimbledon Rackets Club
Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY) beat Saurav Ghosal (IND) 7-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-10 (4-2) (53 mins)
Chris Ryder (ENG) bt Scott Arnold (AUS) 11-6, 11-5, 8-11, 11-1
Mark Krajcsak (HUN) beat Simon Rosner (GY) 8-11, 7-11, 11-8, 11-6, 11-9 (73 mins)
Jesse Engelbrecht (RSA) beat Stacey Ross (Eng) 11-7, 11-5, 11-0 (32 mins)
REVISED FIRST ROUND DRAW:
5.30pm: (6) Alex Gough (Wal) v (Q) Mohamed El Shorbagy (Egypt)
6.30pm: (2) James Willstrop (Eng) v (Q) Mark Krajcsak (Hungary)
8.00pm: (3) Lee Beachill (Eng) v (Q) Chris Ryder (Eng)
9.00pm: (5) Olli Tuominen (Fin) v Joey Barrington (Eng)
5.30pm: (7) Cameron Pilley (Aus) v Davide Bianchetti (Ita)
6.30pm: (4) Peter Barker (Eng) v Daryl Selby (Eng)
8.00pm: (1) Gregory Gaultier (Fra) v Alister Walker (Eng)
9.00pm: (8) Renan Lavigne (Fra) v (Q) Jesse Engelbrecht (RSA)