Saturday, March 2, 2024

Egypt claim World Junior hat-trick

England finish a distant fifth as Egypt celebrate
By HOWARD HARDING – Squash Mad Correspondent

Egypt celebrate their success
Egypt celebrate their success

Egypt retained the WSF Men’s World Junior Team Squash Championship title for the third time in a row after beating Pakistan 2/0 in the final of the biennial World Squash Federation championship being staged at the Wanderers Sports Club in Windhoek, the capital of Namibia.

But the favourites were pushed all the way by the second seeds in the sixth successive final between the world’s two powerhouse squash nations – Egypt’s eventual triumph equalling the five-title record of Australia, the event’s first champions in 1980.

elatmasEgyptian number one Omar Elatmas  put the defending champions into the driving seat with a 12-10, 12-10, 6-11, 11-8 victory in 74 minutes over Tayyab Aslam (pictured right, foreground, with Elatmas).

It was a repeat of the 18-year-old from Cairo’s quarter-final upset over the top Pakistani junior in the preceding world individual championship – which ultimately led to Elatmas reaching the final, as a 9/16 seed.

With resounding cheers from the Egyptian bench, second string Youssef Aboul-Makarim then twice repelled fightbacks by Syed Ali Mujtaba Shah Bokhari to beat his Pakistan opponent 11-7, 9-11, 11-3, 7-11, 11-9 in 62 minutes to clinch Egypt’s historic 2/0 triumph.

Arguably, however, the event’s heroes were Spain. Seeded sixth and appearing in the championship for the first time since finishing in 20th place in 2008, Spain followed up their quarter-final upset over 4th seeds India by beating Malaysia, the fifth seeds, 2/0 in the play-off for third-place – thereby outclassing their previous best finish of fifth in 1998.

Four-time champions England made up for the shock of losing out on a semi-final place for the first time in the 34-year history of the event by securing fifth place – but the third seeds were taken the full distance before overcoming India 2/1.

Plaudits also go to Ireland, the No8 seeds who beat Finland 2/0 in the play-off for seventh place to achieve their highest finish in the championship for 32 years!

Meanwhile, Finland’s eighth place is also their best finish since 1994.

12th seeds USA also outperformed their seeding by finishing in ninth place following a 2/1 victory over Israel. But Israel, the 11th seeds, were making only their second ever appearance in the championships – having finished in 16th place in their 1988 debut!

Host Namibia celebrated their first appearance in the championship by finishing in 22nd place – ahead of fellow debutants Botswana.

WSF World Junior Team Squash Championship, Windhoek, Namibia:

[1] EGYPT bt [2] PAKISTAN 2/0
Omar Elatmas bt Tayyab Aslam 12-10, 12-10, 6-11, 11-8 (74m)
Youssef Aboul-Makarim bt Syed Ali Mujtaba Shah Bokhari 11-7, 9-11, 11-3, 7-11, 11-9 (62m)

3rd place play-off:
[6] SPAIN bt [5] MALAYSIA 2/0
Edmon Lopez Moller bt Mohd Syafiq Kamal 11-7, 11-9, 11-7 (44m)
Iker Pajares Bernabeu bt Eain Yow Ng 11-5, 11-9, 11-6 (33m)

5th place play-off:
[3] ENGLAND bt [4] INDIA 2/1
George Parker bt Kush Kumar 6-11, 11-8, 5-11, 11-6, 11-5 (62m)
Lyell Fuller lost to Madhav Dhingra 11-2, 7-11, 9-11, 11-13 (45m)
Patrick Rooney bt Velavan Senthilkumar 6-11, 11-8, 9-11, 11-3, 11-8 (65m)

7th place play-off:
[8] IRELAND bt [7] FINLAND 2/0
Michael Craig bt Jami Aijanen 11-7, 11-2, 11-5 (31m)
David Ryan bt Kristian Rautiainen 8-11, 11-9, 11-3, 7-11, 11-7 (77m)

9th place play-off:
[12] USA bt [11] ISRAEL 2/1
Mason Ripka lost to Daniel Poleshchuk 4-11, 4-11, 5-11 (24m)
Timothy Robert Brownell bt Roee Avraham 11-6, 11-13, 11-7, 11-8 (56m)
Max D Reed bt Noam Peer 9-11, 11-6, 11-2, 11-6 (38m)

11th place play-off:
[13/15] FRANCE bt [9] COLOMBIA 2/1
Auguste Dussourd bt Andres Felipe Herrera 9-11, 9-11, 11-8, 14-12, 11-6 (63m)
Enzo Corigliano lost to Dairo Sandoval 11-8, 6-11 dsq (29m)
Lucas Rousselet bt Nicolas Valderrama 11-2, 3-11, 11-4, 11-7 (37m)

13th place play-off:
[10] CANADA bt [13/15] ARGENTINA 2/0
David Baillargeon bt Federico Cioffi 3-11, 11-5, 8-11, 11-9, 11-6 (70m)
Carter Robitaille bt Franco Andres Romiglio 11-5, 11-3, 11-2 (18m)

15th place play-off:
[19/21] SWEDEN bt [16/18] KUWAIT w/o

17th place play-off:
[16/18] SOUTH AFRICA bt [16/18] NEW ZEALAND 2/1
Laurence Kuhn bt Scott Galloway 3-11, 12-10, 11-8, 13-11 (41m)
Aubrey Lawrence lost to Luke Jones 11-2, 5-11, 11-6, 6-11, 11-13 (60m)
Jean-Pierre van de Merwe bt Chapman Kutia 11-9, 9-11, 11-9, 9-11, 12-10 (63m)

19th place play-off:
[13/15] GERMANY bt [19/21] ZIMBABWE 2/0
Lucas Wirths bt Tafadzwa Mushunje 11-4, 11-0, 11-4 (29m)
Niklas Becher bt Innocent Mukumba 11-2, 11-5, 11-1 (21m)

21st place play-off:
[19/21] GUATEMALA bt [22/23] NAMIBIA 2/0
Ricardo Toscano bt Michael van Lingen 12-10, 8-11, 11-4, 11-8 (34m)
Qaini Bonilla bt Le Hugo van Rooyen 11-8, 11-4, 8-11, 11-4 (34m)

23rd place: [22/23] BOTSWANA

Pictures courtesy of WSF


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