TODAY in Paderborn,
Sat 27th, Day SEVEN
Steve and Fram in
France 1-2  Australia
Gregory Gaultier 3-0 David Palmer
11/9, 11/4, 11/0
Marche 1-3 Stewart Boswell 13/11, 6/11, 5/11, 4/11
Thierry Lincou 1-3 Cameron
Pilley 10/12, 9/11,
 England 1-2  Egypt
Nick Matthew 0-3 Ramy Ashour
7/11, 9/11, 12/14 (59m)
Peter Barker 3-0 Hisham Ashour
11/6, 11/9, 11/7 (48m)
James Willstrop 1-3 Karim Darwish 5/11, 11/13,
11/9, 4/11 (63m)
En Bref #6
Gallery & Videos
5/6: Malaysia 2-1 Italy
Bengy beats Berrett 3-2 in the decider
7/8: India 0-2 USA
USA's best finish since '83 ...
9/10: Netherlands 0-2 Germany
LJ v Rosner 1st game 19-17 44m !!!
11/12: Finland 0-2 Hong Kong
13/14: South Africa 1-2 Denmark
a best-ever finish for the Danes
15/16: Canada 2-1 Mexico
'Solid' Shawn wins the decider ...
17/18: Spain 1-2 Switzerland
19/20: Kuwait 2-0 Ireland
21/22: Pakistan 0-2 Scotland
Pakistan slip up again, Scots jubilant
23/24: New Zealand 2-0 Argentina
25/26: Colombia 1-2 Austria
Czaska saves MB in 3rd to win decider
27/28: Hungary w/o Korea
easy for the Hungarians ...
29/30: Sweden 2-0 Ukraine
31/32: Bermuda 0-2 Namibia
31st place for Namibia !!
scores from all playoff matches
Scottish Identity Parade
Austrian Comeback King
Egypt 2-1 England
quick summary as it
Another packed house in
Paderborn got its money's worth in the first match of the final
- even though it was only three games, there was enough
incident, excitement and fantastic squash to last anyone a
"Ramy played fantastic in the first two games," said Nick
Matthew at the end, which was true enough although the
Englishman did lead until the later stages of the second, but
more inspired play saw Ramy overtake him to double his
"Everyone saw what happened in the third," added the Englishman,
referring to a trio of incidents at the end of the game where
refereeing decisions went against him, much to his disgust and
that of most of the crowd, who roundly booed all of the
all started when Matthew thought he'd won the game after an
Ashour dropshot, but although he was sure it was down a let was
played which led to much arguing and finger-pointing, and it
didn't get much calmer after they went back on court.
Anyway, it really was a fantastic display from both so let's not
Ramy took the game 14/12 and the defending champions led
Until, that is, Peter Barker got the better oh Hisham
Ashour in the second match. The elder Ashour brother showed
flashes of his shotmaking ability, but for the moist part Barker
kept it steady and tight enough to maintain in control of the
Hisham threatened towards the end of the second game, but once
Barker had seen off that danger he kept a tight enough lid on
things to close out the third and level the match.
That set up the decider between James Willstrop and
The Egyptian took early charge, winning the first comfortable
but the second less so. Willstrop pulled one back in a tense
finish to the third, but the fourth was all Egypt and soon
enough the Egyptian bench was celebrating once more ...
Nick Matthew 0-3 Ramy
7/11, 9/11, 12/14 (59m)
NICK Ė EMOTIONS RUNNING HIGH
There was no observation round between the two number ones
today. From the start, Ramy went for variety in pace, angles,
his shots were flying in all directions, and it was a pretty
quick opening game, about eight minutes.
I guess it took that long to Nick to get used to the Egyptianís
pace again. The second was longer, about 15m, with nothing much
between them, 1/1, 3/3, 6/6, 8/8, 9/9. Put under much more
pressure, Ramy started to make a few errors - he didnít do one
in the first game, but I counted five in this second one. Ramyís
shots were still as lethal at the front, with Nick retrieving
balls I didnít know that could be played, but itís at the back
that the Egyptian takes that game, 11/9.
crowd was enjoying every minute of, really wanted to prolong the
show, and started to get behind Nick, who had absolutely no
intention of losing 3/0 I tell you.
The game was as close as the first, the rallies were just
incredible, Ramy inventing shots and angles as he went along,
playing perfect lobs from the wrist, bless him, while Nick was
trying his best to push him back to the back wall.
At 8/9, Nick to serve, not sure what happened, but suddenly,
Nick started talking with somebody from the Egyptian camp ďyou
are not the refĒ he said, pointing at the camp. That lasted a
little while and the English camp started to growl quietly.
Then, again donít asked me what happened, cause I donít have a
clue. There was a ball from Ramy that Nick and the English camp
saw down, that the Egyptian camp saw up, along with the refs.
The English growl became louder, especially when the two players
came off court, arguing their case to the central ref, who Iím
sorry to say lacked sdufficient authority, letting the players
chat, and argue, and talk to each other. Not good.
Nick asked Ramy for the ball as the Egyptian was about to serve,
and wiped it. Ramy didnít seem to appreciate it. Followed a
series of ďcontroversial callsĒ, Nick pleading for a
stroke, and only getting lets, three times.
By that time, Ramy and he were playing at a pace that looked
like the old films in black and white, so fast, so fastÖ.
The English camp was pretty gutted when Ramy won, we had a few
exchanges between the two Team coachesÖ It was all happening.
But at the end of the day, Egypt was up 1/0.
was very tough physically, we both gave it our 100%, I played
very good squash, but so did Nick.
It was a very physical match, we both are playing for our
country, we are both eager to win, and to die on the court if we
need, itís a bit like soccer.
I tried to take the pressure away from my brother, whoís in the
best form of his life at the moment, and I hope he wins todayÖ
Winning against somebody as strong as Nick gives me a lot of
confidence. I know heíll be back firing at me in our next match,
so Iíll have to be ready and work hardÖ
He played a lot better than me today, in particular in the first
two games, but I was getting better in the third, although I
didnít play anywhere near my best.
Now, I was not allowed to play a fourth game, I think that the
whole crowd here saw what three people couldnít see. There was a
bit of injustice here, so we are ready to fight till the
3-0 Hisham Ashour
11/6, 11/9, 11/7 (48m)
PETER CLEAN AND FAIR
I know from the Egyptian camp that Hisham was poorly for a few
days with a bad sore throat that got on his lungs. But it
doesnít take anything away from the stunning performance the
Englishman produced today.
And when you read his quote, donít believe for one second when
he says that he couldnít play a drop shot to save his life.
Actually, what was remarkable today, was that Hisham was really
really patient, to the point of being a bit passive Ė in
particular in the first game Ė and Peter was attacking at the
front at the perfect time, and most of his shots struck gold
first time! It was a bit the world in reverse in my book.
Hisham did his best, he really tried to match Peter, and stay in
the rallies, but the Englishman was not to be denied today.
learned from my match against Thierry last time in Odense during
the last World Team, the decider against France in the semis. It
was a disappointing time for us, but hopefully, we will put it
I will take any win against Hisham, 3/0, 3/1Ö. In NY, we had a
bad match, and I guess I wasnít very fair to him then. He is a
quality player, and I want to apologise to him for NY.
So today, I wanted to make amends, to put it right, and win fair
and square, which I think I did.
Ok, it wasnít my best squash ever, and I couldnít play a nice
drop shot to save my life but we did win, and now, weíve all
confidence in James.
Willstrop 1-3 Karim Darwish
5/11, 11/13, 11/9,
KARIM Ė THE LAST ONE FOR EGYPT.
Everybody has been saying this week ďanything can happen in the
World TeamsĒ. And it did.
You would think that if Karim Darwish, world number three, lost
to Thierry Lincou, 35, soon to be world number 10 or below, he
probably wouldnít win against James Willstrop, world number
four, against whom he hadnít won since November í06.
Today, James Willstrop was
extremely positive with his game, attacking well, but
unfortunately for him, made an average of four tins per game in
the first three games.
As we say in French, you canít make an omelette without breaking
the eggs, as in, when you play a high percentage game, sometimes
you get a few errors, it does come with the package.
If Karim didnít play his game yesterday, too careful not to make
any errors against the Frenchman, today he was much more
present, took the initiative, went for his shots and put James
under pressure from the first rally to the last.
The first game was all about Karim to be honest, but in the
second, James was leading score wise for most of it, not by
much, but stillÖ He even had two game balls, 10/9 then 11/10,
but itís Karim who surprises the Englishman in the end, a stroke
and a trickle boast, 13/11.
do or die, takes control of the rallies, and is looking terribly
good in the third, leading 3/1, 6/4, 8/6. Karim catches up at
8/8, but this time the Englishman finds some superb shots on his
backhand, 11/9 James. We have been playing for 48 minutes of
brutal, intense squash.
Everything is still possible, thinks the English camp. Of
course, James is a bit tired, who wouldnít be, but he is used to
digging in, I donít nickname him Digin James for nothing. And up
to 4/4, the game is pretty tight.
And that the exact moment Karim chooses to plays his best squash
for a very long time, stringing points together like precious
James wonít score another point.
Egypt confirms its world supremacy, as all the Egyptian camp
erupts onto the glass court, while James exits, calm and
dignified as only the English know how.
Today I played
like I did because of Thierry, because of our match yesterday.
He gave me the hunger to win for my country, and even though we
won yesterday, I was very angry with myself, I just couldnít
handle the pressure, and I just didn't play my game.
Today I decided to treat this as if it was a PSA match, and to
enjoy myself, and thatís what I did, to try and relax and forget
about the pressure.
James played so well, but I really wanted that victory, and I
think that at the end I played superb squash, and Iím really
proud I gave that performance.
year we missed Shabana, but all the players have been fantastic,
they played wonderfully well.
Karim, Iím so happy because heís got his confidence back after
his injury, then trying to come back at his best, and having bad
results, he so deserves to lift that trophy. He was up against
James, such a stunning player, and really had to be at his
utmost best to win tonight.
And what about Ramy, he is the Mozart of squash, his game is
second to none.
I promised my government that I would bring them back that
trophy, and I think very few people were betting on us being
victorious. And this morning, I gave back the trophy to the
organisation here, and Iím really happy that weíll be leaving
with it, taking it back to Egypt.
FRANCE A BIT SHORT
Guys, no time to make you a big detailed report as the final is
about to start, but in a nutshell.
Greg Gaultier, pumped up by his loss yesterday and his will to
make up for it for his team, played a perfect game against a
willing but knackered David Palmer. A sharp 11/0 to finish the
I couldnít help myself remembering when David, in front of the
Pyramids, took the World Title away from Greg, in five gruelling
games. And today, it was like Greg was closing that chapter. And
David took the beating with grace and smile, as the true
champion he is.
it wasnít easy, we finished late yesterday, we just couldnít
fall asleep, the adrenalin was still pumping, whether win or
lose. So you struggle to relax.
From my point of view, I didnít play that long, it was only 50m,
even if I played very hard. So this morning, I was fresh.
Iím so sorry that I couldnít bring the point for my team
yesterday, my two team mates didnít amazingly well, but we just
couldnít make it. Still, I had to play today, and I got a text
from my coach, who was telling me that champions, even when they
had a great disappointment, just bounce back. And thatís what I
tried to do today. I was focused and I think I played well. And
Iím glad I won that point for my Team.
May the best win that third place..
I really would like the crowd for turning up in mass, and even
if we didnít play on the glass court, we could hear the
atmosphere, and that was a great feeling. So well done to the
Germans, we wish it was like that all the time, please keep it
didnít have much left in the tank tonight, between the ankle and
the lack of fitness due to the ankle! When you arrive at my age,
everything had to be perfect, especially against somebody like
Greg. I tried my best but he was too good.
It was tough, and all credit to Greg, he had a very hard match
yesterday that finish late, great effort to back it up today.
Iíve been to a lot of Team events, and itís the best one, the
set up, the crowd, the court, it was perfect. It was as good if
not better than the PSA events, and I wish it had been there
four or five years ago when I was able to perform better.
Iím so proud of the Aussie team, hopefully Bozza can level it,
and then Cam can close the match.
Next on, Little Greg as I call
him to differentiate him the Other Greg, was up against former
world number 4 Stewart Boswell. It was an superb performance
from the youngster, who is not exactly used either to that kind
of enormous pressure nor the glass court.
Little Greg did awfully well to clinch the first game 13/11,
Bozza was working pretty hard to put the Frenchman out of
position, and did a lot of errors in that game.
that, the Frenchman was a bit tired, bless him, Stewart cut down
on the unforced errors, while taking the measure of his
opponent, taking him to the front more and more.
A good logical win for the Australian, but a Little Greg that
will learn an enormous lot from the experience.
On went Thierry, and from the start, it was obvious to me that
he was flat as it comes. Yes he tried his best, but Cam has got
the perfect game to twist and turn the Frenchman, getting him
constantly out of his comfort zone, forcing him to find the tin
a bit too often.
Cameron played the perfect game, he made so few errors, he was
disciplined and focused, heíll be extremely proud of his match.
While Thierry, well, like David, had given all what he couldÖ.
It was a great week for France, they came very close, and Iím
personally very proud of the all or nothing choice my
compatriots made yesterday. They came pretty close to cause the
upset of the century. Iím so proud of them.
had a very hard match yesterday, and finished very late, I knew
he was bound to be slow, whereas I got shot by James in the 3rd,
and had plenty of energy left!!!
I was a bit slow off the blocks in the 3rd, whereas he played
I tried my best not to give him any loose shots in the middle,
and to keep it or very short, or deep. I place a couple of
boasts and a few short kills that took him by surprise.
I was really disappointed with my loss against James today, and
if I had lost that one, I probably would have necked myself!!!!
we tried our 200% to get to the final, it was a choice, bit of a
toss of a coin, and of course, we left on the court a lot of
energy, of course physical, but most of all mental.
Today, I had in the legs my match from yesterday, but most of
all, I lacked concentration, I was losing my focus, I knew what
to do, in particular in the 4th, but I just couldnít do it. And
I guess I could have been a bit more luck in the first two
games, it was pretty close, one would have been good!
Physically, I was fine at the end, but itís mentally, that I was
We could have played it safe, going for the bronze, but we
didnít. We pushed as hard as we couldnít yesterday, and I think
we were right to do so, as we came very close indeed. We are
very proud of our performance this week.
Watch the Jugglers
It was definitely not easy, Greg played exceptionally well. In
the first, he was really strong, and I really had to hang in
For the next match, Thierry has got the experience, but Cameron
is improving, looking forward to this match.
I was fine in the first game, but Iím not able to keep that fast
pace on a consistent basis, I have lapses in concentrationÖ
I know I had to keep it straight, or if I was to crosscourt, my
width would have had to be perfect, and that today wasnít not
good enough, he killed me again and again. And if I was able to
keep him behind in the first game, I couldnít after, which meant
I kept on running and runningÖ
I did what I could, but there is still a lot of work to be done.