Mohamed El Shorbagy and Nour El Sherbini win ATCO PSA Dubai World Series Finals

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Winners: Nour El Sherbini and Mohamed El Shorbagy (right)

Mohamed El Shorbagy and Nour El Sherbini showed why they are World No1s by clinching the men’s and women’s titles respectively at the ATCO PSA Dubai World Series Finals on Saturday.

At the Emirates Golf Club in Dubai, El Shorbagy went into the title decider on the back of a thrilling win against Germany’s Simon Rösner on Friday night.

Against his compatriot Ali Farag, who stood in his way of retaining his title, El Shorbagy fell behind in the first game 9-11, but regrouped in the second game to produce an impressive 11-3 victory.

The world number one continued his good form into the third game with an 11-9 win after a succession of lengthy rallies.

The championship was decided in the fourth game as El Shorbagy proved unstoppable and retained his title with a thrilling 11-8 victory.

“We had a lot of great squash this week, and all the battles were played in a good spirit and I’m delighted to be a part of it,” said El Shorbagy.

“I’m glad to play the final game of the season with Ali. I know he’s going to train hard over the summer, hopefully he doesn’t get much better as he’s already a tough test,” he added.

In the women’s final, El Sherbini was competing in the final for the second year in succession after surviving a controversial semi-final clash with France’s Camille Serme.

Her opponent and fellow Egyptian compatriot Raneem El Welily, came into the match high in confidence having defeated world number three Nour El
Tayeb in a quick-fire 19-minute semi-final clash on Friday.

The world number one was the aggressor from the start and kept her foot on the gas throughout the opening game, taking just 13 minutes to win the first game 11-5.

In the second, El Welily fought back to win 11-9 to level the scores. El Sherbini triumphed in the third, taking the game 11-8. She then sealed the title with a comprehensive 11-5 victory.

Speaking in front of a packed crowd, the new champion said: “This is the sixth time we’ve played this season and it’s hard to play the same person so much, and Raneem has probably been the most consistent player this season so I’m delighted to win. I think as Egyptians we’ve really been trying to push each other on. It’s been an honour to battle with her this season.”

Both winners will take home Dh157,029 [$42,750] prize money.

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World No1 Mohamed Elshorbagy cements his status among the greats in squash history

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World No. 1 Mohamed Elshorbagy further cemented his status as one of the greats of the game after clinching his second successive PSA World Series Finals crown on Saturday.

The ‘Beast of Alexandria’ beat his compatriot and world No2 Ali Farag in four games 9-11, 11-3, 11-9, 11-8 to secure his eighth piece of silverware this season.

With 30 PSA titles to his name, the 27-year-old’s incredible form over the past four years has already seen him compared to legends such as Amr Shabana and eight-time world champion Jansher Khan.

Although he may not have the same number of world titles to match the likes of Khan, he is continuing to set the bar while playing squash at a ferocious and attacking level.

Three Hong Kong titles, two British Opens, two Windy Opens, two US Opens, two Tournament of Championships, two Dubai titles, one El Gouna crown and one world championship are just some of the silverware that sit on his mantelpiece at home.

And more is expected to follow in an illustrious career to date.

The Bristol resident arrived in the UAE last week as the defending PSA World Series Finals champion, a win that subsequently kick-started a successful 12 months and a return to the pinnacle of the world rankings after Karim Abdel Gawad briefly occupied top spot.

In the 12 PSA tournaments since last year’s triumph at Dubai Opera House, he has secured seven titles and reached another three finals as well as qualifying for the semi-final in El Gouna.

In Dubai this week, Elshorbagy cut the same composed and influential figure that we are so normally used to seeing light up the PSA events worldwide, with his supreme fitness levels, strong game plan and overall shot selection head and shoulders above other competitors on the circuit.

He stormed to group stage wins over Miguel Angel Rodriguez of Colombia and compatriot Tarek Momen on Wednesday and Thursday, setting up a dead-rubber final group match against Nick Matthew with both players already booking their semi-final places.

Although he suffered defeat in just 17 minutes – his first loss to the Briton since March 2017 – he was clearly not at his immaculate best, instead perhaps, saving energy for Friday’s last four tie with Simon Rosner.

The world No5 had cruised through his group with three wins and looked every bit as intimidating as the man who sealed the Tournament of Champions title back in January, but Elshorbagy dispatched the German 12-10, 10-12, 11-3.

In the final, Elshorbagy lost the first game 11-6 before closing out the next three 11-3, 11-9, 11-8 to beat Farag in 51 minutes.

With six Egyptians in the top-10 in the world rankings and four in the top five, Elshorbagy is strengthening his position as one of the best there’s ever been.

He may be 13 years into his professional career, but as it stands, he is the marquee man with a natural ability to control the game on the T, adding to his array of shotmaking skills.

Squash is a punishing sport, with the relentless schedule and travelling adding to the on-court demands.

But the reigning world champion has proven he can manage his body in the right way and stay injury-free throughout the season.

With Matthew retiring and 35-year-old Gregory Gaultier showing a serious drop in form this season, Elshorbagy is entering his peak years in the sport and now has the chance to push further away from his rivals.

He is only three titles away from matching Shabana’s record of 33 PSA crowns, and with sheer improvements in his overall game, expect the Egyptian powerhouse to occupy top spot for years to come.

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Egypt show their quality as Nour El Sherbini and Mohamed El Shorbagy among the stars to reach PSA Dubai World Series finals

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In the final: Nour-El-Sherbini (right)

Egyptians dominated the semi-finals of the PSA Dubai World Series finals as Raneem El Welily, Ali Farag, Nour El Sherbini and Mohamed El Shorbagy all sealed their place in Saturday’s final.

In the ladies’ event, world number one El Sherbini saw off France’s Camille Serme in a three-game thriller, 11-7, 9-11, 11-8, after 39 minutes of pulsating action.

“It’s always a tough match playing Camille,” said El Sherbini.

“The court is really hot and maybe it suited her game more than me but I was just trying very hard on every point. It was really hard from the first point and I have no idea what I would have done if it was longer than this [best of three] because I was tired. I’m really hungry to win it, I never won it before and this is my third year coming here. It’s the second final so hopefully this time it’s going to be my title.”

Also in the women’s competition, world number two El Welily booked her place in the final with a comprehensive victory over fellow Egyptian Nour El Tayeb, 11-7, 11-9.


In the first men’s semi-final veteran Nick Matthew couldn’t continue his impressive form to defeat Farag, who secured his place in the final with an 11-5, 11-7 win.

Matthew had been in great form heading into the game, having won all of his previous matches in this year’s finals.

The last match of the day, between world men’s number one ElShorbagy and in-form German Simon Rosner ended in favour of the Egyptian.

El Shorbagy took the first game 12-10. Rosner battled back to win the second 10-12 but the match was settled when Elshorbagy stormed to an 11-3 victory, booking his place in the final.

Both the male and female players are competing in the final tournament of the season for a prize fund of Dh587,680.

The men’s and ladies finals take place this evening at Emirates Golf Club, tickets are available at www.platinumlist.net.

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