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Friday, 06 December 2019

Squash: Shabana, Elshorbagy meet in all-Egyptian US Open final

Mohamed Elshorbagy, who becomes the fourth youngest player ever to become squash world No 1 after beating Frenchman Gregory Gaultier, heads to all-Egyptian final against countryman Amr Shabana

Ahmed Abd El Rasoul , Saturday 18 Oct 2014
Mohamed El-Shorbagy
Egyptian squash player Mohamed El-Shorbagy
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Egyptian squash stars Mohamed Elshorbagy and Amr Shabana go head-to-head in an all-Egyptian US Open final Saturday.

Shabana, who has lifted the US Open cup twice before, reached the final after beating world champion Nick Matthew 11-5, 11-9, 10-12, 11-7 in 63 minutes in the semis on Friday.

World number two Mohamed Elshorbagy defeated the world number one, Frenchman Gregory Gaultier, 11-6, 11-9, 11-4 to snatch a spot in the prestigious final.

After the 48-minute marathon victory, the 23-year-old Elshorbagy climbed to the top of the PSA World Tour rankings, overtaking 31-year-old Gaultier to become the fourth youngest player ever to become squash world number one.

"It feels unbelievable right now," Elshorbagy said after Friday's win.

"It's been a dream to get to that spot and I can't believe I'm there right now. I came into this tournament knowing there was a big chance to get that world number one ranking for the first time in my life, but I was able to control that emotion well.

"However, when I woke up this morning I was so nervous. I spoke to Jonah (Barrington) and my mother and managed to control it and I think actually those nerves helped a little bit today and I'm really glad I was able to win.

“Once I knew that I could become number one at this tournament I called my mum and told her I needed her out here for the competition and I’m so pleased it has happened," he added.

Elshorbagy will face stiff competition to keep his 17-match winning streak alive when he meets the 35-year-old experienced star Shabana Saturday.

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