Shabana not content to make up the numbers
Four-time World Champion Amr Shabana, one of the most
successful squash players of all-time, says he's hungry to add a
fifth title to his name ahead of the 2014 Qatar PSA World
Championship which get underway in Doha this week.
35-year-old from Cairo, who now resides in Toronto, became the
first Egyptian player ever to win the prestigious title when he
beat Thierry Lincou in the 2003 final and having gone on to
become only the fourth man in history to win the title four
times, he says he's hungry for more.
the World Championship is huge as the title is the biggest
in our sport," said Shabana.
"As a kid I used to daydream
of playing the World Championship against the top guys so to
actually win it once, and to be the first Egyptian to win it
after all the amazing Egyptians that played before me, is
something I am still proud of today.
"But I'm not going to this year's ever just to show up. I'm
going to try and win - whether that results in me losing
first round or winning it is unknown, but I will try my best
going in to each match.
"As long as the mind and body are still healthy then I'm
confident going in to this event."
Having beaten current World No.2
Gregory Gaultier and World No.5 Ramy Ashour to the title in 2007
and 2009, respectively, Shabana knows exactly what it takes to
lift the coveted trophy, and he says the battle between
Gaultier, current World No.1 Mohamed Elshorbagy and defending
World Champion Nick Matthew to top the PSA World Rankings this
year could play a huge role in the outcome of the Worlds.
win the World Championship it takes a few factors to all
fall in to place in that week," said Shabana.
"You need to train hard and be ready for the competition and
you need to focus on each round as it comes because everyone
there will be just as prepared as you.
"I just treat it as any other tournament but I know the
rankings can have a huge effect in those situations. It
shows and reflects how well you played through the year but
it can drain you or push you forward as well and we'll see
if there's been any effect next week."