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Amr Shabana: I was destroyed by ruthless Gregory Gaultier

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French world number one powers to NetSuite title in straight games
By BLAKE RHODES, Squash Mad Reporter in San Francisco

SMILING ASSASSIN: Gregory Gaultier kisses his NetSuite trophy
SMILING ASSASSIN: Gregory Gaultier kisses his NetSuite trophy

French world No.1 Gregory Gaultier claimed his 30th PSA World Tour tournament title by defeating Egyptian World No.5 Amr Shabana in the final of the 2014 NetSuite Open, PSA International 70 tournament in San Francisco (on Tuesday September 30).

Gaultier, who was competing in his 60th World Tour event final, emerged a resounding victor beating four-time World Champion Shabana 3-0 in just 32-minutes, in what was their 29th meeting on tour, to win his second NetSuite Open title to add to his triumph in 2012.

The victory ensured the man from Aix-En-Provence completed a clean sweep in the competition, beating Gregoire Marche, Chris Simpson, Miguel Angel Rodriguez and Shabana without dropping a single game throughout the tournament.

“I didn’t know we had played that many matches on tour,” said Gaultier.

“We’re both quite old now and he’s still pushing very hard to be at the top but of course I am very happy to have won.

“We need support like we have here in San Francisco to help our sport grow and it was nice to see a good crowd tonight. John (Nimick) and his team put together an amazing event here and I’ll certainly be coming back next year.”

“When you play the No.1 player, you know you’re going to have a big challenge,” said 35-year-old Shabana, who fell to Gaultier at the semi-final hurdle in 2012.

“I would have liked to put on a better show, but sometimes you get destroyed. You’re never too old to learn.”

“Greg was truly masterful tonight and throughout the whole tournament,” said  Nimick, a U.S. Squash Hall of Famer and President of Event Engine, Inc., the tournament promoters.

“To thoroughly dominate a player of Amr’s caliber truly shows why Greg is the world’s top player. We’ll see if he can keep his form and win his third NetSuite Open title next year.”

NetSuite Open 2014, San Francisco.

[1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt [2] Amr Shabana (EGY) 3-0: 11-3, 11-5, 11-5 (32min)



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1 Comment

  1. I hate using this over-used word, but Greg was AWESOME in this match, virtually un-playable despite all of Shab’s efforts, unquestionable skill, and experience at this level. The cleanest of matches, leaving the referee with little more to do than calling the score, providing a spectacle of excellence for the Sport. At last Greg has found a way to hold the World No.1 spot for more than a month, it has been a long wait for him, and it appears that it will take a super-human string of performances to replace him at the top. I’m delighted that Greg will be playing again for Winchester in the PSL this season, and hope that the Sponsors are able to make full use of his availability. Big respect to Shabs, whose honest appraisal after the match said it all !

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