• 13th Qatar Classic Squash Championship  • 08-15 Oct 2013 • Doha •  




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TODAY at the Qatar Classic 2013:                   Fram & Steve in Doha

15-Nov Final:

[5] Mohamed Elshorbagy
(Egy) 3-2 [3] Nick Matthew (Eng)
        11/5, 5/11, 11/6, 6/11, 11/4 (83m) 

Shorbagy takes his biggest prize

Mohamed Elshorbagy is the 2013 Qatar Classic champion after prevailing in a pulsating five-game final with world champion Nick Matthew.

The Egyptian, at 22 years of age 11 years younger than his opponent, made a storming start, taking the first 11/5.

Matthew regrouped and levelled 11/5 thanks in part to a number of errors from Shorbagy, but again in the third it was the Egyptian that the packed crowd were cheering on as he retook the lead 11/6 with a run of eight unanswered points from 2-6 down.

Matthew fought back once more, with Shorbagy again making errors from the middle of the fourth as Matthew took it 11/6.

After a close opening to the decider - Matthew's 3-0 lead was soon erode - it was Shorbagy who pulled clear, turning to salute the crowd and his watching family as the final ball from Matthew hit the tin and Shorbagy went one better than his loss in five in the World Open final here last December.

It's by far the biggest trophy Mohamed has won as a senior - his first World Series triumph - and he was obviously elated:

“It’s just an unbelievable feeling - I can come to grips with the fact I won the tournament, but even more important, the fact is that I just beat Nick in five, and in a final!

“Last year, when I saw Ramy holding the trophy, I told my mum that I would win it for her next year. So I’m glad I kept my promise.”

Mohamed's full Quote, with video  |

ON THE BLOG:  Nick's Quote

Mohamed's full quote with video


Nick's Quote

Mohamed's Quote with video

Fram reports

“I like it in Qatar, I went into the final last year here, and my brother won his World Junior title here, Qatar has been good for us….”

Yes. The Shorbagy’s surely like being here and Mohamed, in front of his mum and dad, won his first ever World Series title…

It was not easy though. A lot of mental game. A lot of running. A lot of hard work. And probably the nicest match of the tournament! What a perfect ending to this tournament…

First game was all about Mohamed’s domination on that famous backhand wall. Good solid start for both, 1/1, 2/2, 3/3. Then the Egyptian runs away with 6 points, “a stream train” will say Nick, and it’s 11/5 for Shorbagy in 15 long minutes. As you can see, the rallies were pretty long and played at a gruelling medium pace that Nick enjoys.

And in the second, the Englishman shows his colours. In this one, he is the one that plays steam train, scoring 5 points in a row to lead 7/2. Mohamed will try and come back, but 6 tins is a lot to give away in a single game, and Nick equalises in 13m, 11/5. Now we’ve got a match…

And the third, well, like the World Champion stated after the match, is the turning point. Nick is playing superb squash, accurate and aggressive. And Mohamed seems, well.. sleepy! Subdued even.

To the point where Nick seems on his way to the title, leading comfortably 6/2! But suddenly, out of nowhere, the “Old Shorbagy” as Mohamed will describe himself afterwards, reappears and score not less that 9 points in a row. Imagine the Egyptian crowd chanted his name… Great atmosphere for the young man who admitted that they gave him a boost. You can say that again!!!

Fourth, we think, Mohamed thinks that he has got the momentum when he comes back from 3/6 down to 6/6. But Nick has been there before, you know. He knows how to cut somebody’s leg. Just make him work. And work. And work. And work. “At the end of that rally, that I lost, I was dead, I mean, really dead. I needed time to recover, but he wouldn’t let me!” explained Mohamed later. And you can see the difference of tins again, 5 for Mohamed, 1 for Nick in that one.

The 5th looks bleeping good for Nick, 3/0 to start with. But maybe that’s where the table turned. Maybe the legs, not as fresh as they could have been after what he lived the week before, physically, emotionally.

Or just was it Mohamed that just went up another gear, went into the zone, to score 5 points in a row, 5/3. Nick manages to sneak in a point, but Mohamed will finish it off, score 6 points to take his first title, 82m, 11/4.

He scored those bleeping 3 points tonight…

quote with video

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