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Squash: Egyptian duo Elshorbagy, El Welily claim Malaysian Open titles

World No. 3s Mohamed Elshorbagy and Raneem El Welily secured an Egyptian double at the CIMB Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur. Photos: c/o Mohd Roslan Hisam.

World No. 3s Mohamed Elshorbagy (left) and Raneem El Welily secured an Egyptian double at the CIMB Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur. Photos: c/o Mohd Roslan Hisam.

August 24, 2013: World No. 3 Mohamed Elshorbagy beat Hong Kong No. 1 Max Lee 3-0 (11-6, 11-7, 11-9) on Saturday to win the CIMB Malaysian Open men’s title and complete an Egyptian double after compatriot Raneem El Welily regained the women’s crown in Kuala Lumpur.

 

Elshorbagy proved one star too far for fifth-seeded Lee, who upset fourth seed Karim Abdel Gawad 3-2 in the quarter-finals before securing a shocking 3-1 semi-final win over second Borja Golan, Spain’s World No. 7 and last year’s Hong Kong Open runner-up.

 

In the tournament’s first ever all-Egyptian women’s final, third seed El Welily beat 21-year-old Nour El Tayeb 3-2 (7-11, 11-3, 12-10, 2-11, 11-7) to win the coveted WSA World Series Gold title for the second time in three years.

 

El Welily, 25, reached the final for the third year in a row after beating World No. 1 Nicol David in the semis to spoil the Malaysian star’s hopes of a ninth title in front of her home crowd.

 

El Tayeb was an even more surprising finalist after the World No. 25 upset England’s world champion Laura Massaro, Ireland’s eighth seed Madeline Perry and 10th seed Amanda Sobhy of the USA to reach the showdown at the all-glass showcourt in the Nu Sentral shopping mall.

 

The 16th-seeded underdog from Cairo was eager to follow up on her recent first-ever win over El Welily and managed to push the match to five games.

 

Raneem El Welily (left) beat young compatriot Nour El Tayeb in the final at Nu Sentral shopping mall.

Raneem El Welily (left) beat young compatriot Nour El Tayeb in the final at Nu Sentral shopping mall.

However, it was the Alexandria-born El Welily, runner-up to World No. 1 Nicol David in last December’s Hong Kong Open, who prevailed to win her seventh WSA World Tour title.

 

“I’m happy to win because it’s been a while since I’ve made a final. It was obviously a very tough mental game and I’m happy to have won it,” El Welily told Zheng Guan from The Star newspaper.

 

“Nour has done really well in to be in the final. We both have the same coach and we know each other’s games. That was obvious as she read my game. I think she is a very tough opponent to face, as she is also very talented and has great racquet skills.”

 

El Tayeb was delighted with her performance in Malaysia and pleased for her more experienced compatriot. “I think I played well and I really gave it everything I had,” El Tayeb said. “Raneem is like my big sister and I’m happy for her that she won the tournament.”

 

Source: WSA (www.wsaworldtour.com); Editing by SportAsia

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