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Squash: Ahram Open returns to Giza Pyramids after ten-year absence

Chorouq Chimy , Tuesday 6 Sep 2016
Ahram
Ahram chairman Ahmed El-Naggar announces the return of the Ahram squash Open during a press conference on Tuesday (Photo: Ahram)
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After a 10-year absence, Al-Ahram establishment will host its flagship squash international tournament at the Giza Pyramids from 17-23 September.

Some renowned squash players will be present at the $200,000 tournament such as world number one Mohamed El-Shorbagy and the women's world number one Nour El-Sherbini, who are both Egyptians.

Frenchman Mathieu Castagnet (9) and the women's eight- time world champion Nicole David of Malaysia have also confirmed their participation in the Ahram tournament.    

World Squash Federation vice-president Mohamed El-Menshawi said in a news conference on Tuesday that he is delighted the tournament is coming back to life, saying Ahram's hosting of it confirms that Egypt is capable of staging any event.

"All those who are passionate about squash really missed this tournament. They will now have a chance to follow the games with the pyramids in the background," he added.

"Organizing a great event like Al-Ahram Open ensures there are no security fears in Egypt and that the decision to cancel the 2015 World Team Championship (that was scheduled to take place in Egypt last December) over security concerns was completely false."

The 2015 World Team Championship was postponed indefinitely after several countries such as England, France, Germany, the USA, Canada, Germany and Finland withdrew, citing security concerns.

However, Ahram chairman Ahmed El-Naggar said Ahram decided to sponsor the tournament to highlight Egypt's capabilities of organizing big events.

"Egypt is a secure country," El-Naggar told the Tuesday news conference.  

"Our success in the hosting of this tournament will confirm that there are no security fears in the country. There are many American cities, for instance, that are less secure than Egypt."

El-Naggar said Al-Ahram will cooperate with the Egyptian tourism and antiquities ministries as well as the Egyptian Squash Federation to stage the tournament over the year in several other cities such as Hurghada and Luxor.

 "We are looking to revive tourism in Egypt," he said.

The tournament director Amr Mansi thanked Al-Ahram for its initiative to re-host the tournament.

"The tournament will be broadcast by 40 channels so it will be a good promotion for Egypt and the Egyptian squash," he said.    

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