Gawad aims to make the most of maiden appearance in Dubai

Karim Abdel Gawad hopes to cap a dream year with victory in Dubai.

Sport360 staff
by Sport360 staff
29th May 2017

article:29th May 2017

Karim Abdel Gawad.
Karim Abdel Gawad.

Egyptian World No1 Karim Abdel Gawad says he is relishing the chance to compete in the PSA Dubai World Series Finals for the first time in his career when he will hope to cap a dream year with victory at the season-ending event taking place at Dubai Opera, starting June 6.

The 25-year-old finished top of the PSA Road to Dubai Standings after claiming maximum points at the Qatar Classic and Tournament of Champions during a season that also saw him win the PSA Men’s World Championship last November. And after reaching World No1 for the first time in his career in May 2017, he’ll be aiming to secure a remarkable hat-trick next month.

“To be World No1 and World Champion at the same time is a dream come true,” said Gawad.

“I honestly didn’t expect it. This season has been great but I still have a lot of dreams of course.

“It will be my first time at the World Series Finals so it will be a new experience. I was really close to qualifying last year so I’m really excited to be going there this time and to be playing in such an amazing venue.

“It’s going to be very tough but there’s no pressure on me. I want to go there and enjoy the experience and just try to play my best and see what happens.

“If you put too much pressure on yourself I think you will not perform at 100 per cent.”

This year’s World Series Finals is set to be one of the most competitive ever with the top eight qualifiers on the Men’s and Women’s Road to Dubai Standings battling it out for the $160,000 prize fund.

The tournament features a unique best-of-three games format throughout the group stages as players battle it out for a place in the knock-out semi-finals and beyond and Gawad admitted the change in set-up will provide a challenge for him.

“The best-of-three format isn’t great for me because I’m a slow starter,” he said. “I need to work hard to start faster and stronger and will have to adapt my training over the next few weeks.

“In best-of-three you can’t risk losing the first game – I will try a few things to change my approach and get off to a stronger start but the main aim for me is just to enjoy my first World Series Finals.”

The PSA Dubai World Series Finals takes place from June 6-10, 2017 with the tournament match schedule to be announced on Monday, June 5.

Tickets for the event can be purchased at www.dubaiopera.com.


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