Historic month illustrates Egypt’s dominance
By SEAN REUTHE and ALAN THATCHER
Following his historic win at last month’s Allam British Open where he became the first South American player ever to win a prestigious PSA World Series title, Colombia’s Miguel Angel Rodriguez has risen eight places to World No.6 as part of a history-making top ten on the men’s June PSA World Rankings.
The 32-year-old from Bogota toppled tournament top seed Mohamed ElShorbagy in Hull to lift the prestigious British Open and now sits just two places below his career high of World No.4 – recorded in 2015. Rodriguez has enjoyed a whirlwind few weeks.
After winning in Hull, he had to reschedule his flight plans to compete in the Guatemala International, where he beat Diego Elias of Peru in the final to collect another piece of silverware.
Back home in Colombia before flying to Dubai to compete in the PSA World Series Finals, he received a special award in his home own of Bogota. Yesterday, the Mayor of Bogotá presented him with a special ‘Medal for Civil Merit’. Rodriguez said: “It is the greatest recognition that a Bogotá native could receive. It was a very special day for me.”
Despite his defeat in the British Open final, ElShorbagy maintains his position at the summit of the World Rankings ahead of Ali Farag (No.2), younger brother Marwan (No.3) and Tarek Momen, who moves up to a career-high No.4 ranking – marking the first time in history that Egyptian players have taken the first four spots on the men’s rankings.
With Nour El Sherbini, Raneem El Welily and Nour El Tayeb occupying the top three slots in June’s women’s rankings, Egypt’s dominance of the professional game is more clearly defined than ever.
Tournament of Champions winner Simon Rösner also enjoys a move up to a career-best ranking as he rises a spot to become the first German player in history to reach the world’s top five.
Meanwhile, Rösner’s compatriot, Raphael Kandra, has risen 14 places to a career-high No.23 ranking courtesy of a breathtaking run at the British Open which saw him battle through qualifying before shocking the likes of three-time World Champion Nick Matthew and Marwan ElShorbagy en route to a maiden World Series semi-final.
Elsewhere, Frenchman Gregory Gaultier has dropped out of the top five for the first time since October 2011, with the 35-year-old falling three places to No.7, which is his lowest ranking for almost 12 years.
Egyptian duo Karim Abdel Gawad and Ramy Ashour also move down to No.8 and No.9, respectively, while New Zealand’s Paul Coll remains at No.10.
Peru’s Diego Elias and India’s Saurav Ghosal both move up a place to claim respective rankings of No.11 and No.12, while England’s Nick Matthew drops to No.13 ahead of his final ever tournament at next week’s ATCO PSA Dubai World Series Finals.
Egypt’s Mohamed Abouelghar falls five places to No.14 while his compatriot Omar Mosaad rises two places to take the last place inside the top 15.
Australia’s Ryan Cuskelly remains in No.16 ahead of English pair Daryl Selby (No.17) and James Willstrop (No.18), while Switzerland’s Nicolas Mueller and Hong Kong’s Max Lee complete the top 20.
PSA Men’s World Rankings Top 20 – June 2018:
Action picture and rankings graphic courtesy of PSA. Bogota presentation pictures courtesy of Miguel Angel Rodriguez (via Facebook)