Sandhu sinks top seed Karim Ali Fathi in Chennai final
By NATHAN CLARKE – Squash Mad PSA Correspondent
There was unexpected home success in the JSW PSA Indian Circuit 4 when India’s Harinder Pal Sandhu upset top seed Karim Ali Fathi in the final of the PSA Challenger 10 squash event at the Indian Squash Academy in Chennai to win his third title on the four-event JSW Indian Squash Challenger Circuit.
The Chennai-based 25-year-old took the match 11-8, 11-3, 11-6 in 42 minutes to bring his Indian Circuit success to three titles after winning events number one and three, in Jaipur and Mumbai, respectively.
“It feels really great,” said Sandhu. “I’m very relieved after four weeks coming to a good end.
“I felt a slight pressure playing at home. I know he likes to play fast. I just wanted to weather the storm. He wasn’t moving quickly to the corners. I used that to my advantage.”
“Both set a furious pace from the start, and each game saw lightning exchanges and brilliant play by both,” explained Circuit Director Liesl Goecker. “But Sandhu zeroed in on Fathi’s weakness early on and sent drop after drop into the corners to take the lead.
“The Egyptian couldn’t find an edge against Sandhu, and briefly held the lead in the third game, but couldn’t hold on.”
Gopul Hosur, Vice President of Corporate Relations for the JSW Group and the tournament’s chief guest, said: “This circuit is one of our key sponsorships.
“We’ve found the response has been tremendous. In years to come, we hope to keep increasing our promotion of squash,” added Hosur (pictured with Sandhu and women’s champion Dipika Pallikal).
PSA Challenger 10 JSW PSA Indian Circuit 4, Chennai, India.):
 Karim Ali Fathi (EGY) bt [Q] Adhitya Raghavan (IND)
11-4, 11-4, 11-6 (18m)
 Hannan Tarmidi (MAS) bt [Q] Deepak Mishra (IND)
11-9, 9-11, 11-8, 6-11, 11-5 (55m)
 Ravi Dixit (IND) bt [WC] Velavan Senthilkumar (IND)
11-5, 11-8, 11-7 (32m)
 Kevin Moran (SCO) bt [Q] Vijay Meena (IND)
11-8, 11-4, 13-15, 13-11 (70m)
Kush Kumar (IND) bt  Lance Beddoes (NZL)
11-2, 11-9, 8-11, 11-5 (42m)
Hossam Nasser (EGY) bt  Jonas Daehler (SUI)
11-6, 7-11, 12-10, 6-11, 11-4 (54m)
 Joel Makin (WAL) bt [Q] Abhinav Sinha (IND)
11-7, 11-5, 11-5 (33m)
 Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) bt Ahsan Ayaz (PAK)
11-4, 11-7, 8-11, 9-11, 11-7 (81m)
 Karim Ali Fathi (EGY) bt  Hannan Tarmidi (MAS)
11-9, 11-9, 11-6 (40m)
 Ravi Dixit (IND) bt  Kevin Moran (SCO)
7-11, 11-5, 2-11, 11-6, 11-6 (65m)
Hossam Nasser (EGY) bt Kush Kumar (IND)
11-8, 7-11, 3-11, 13-11, 11-9 (57m)
 Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) bt  Joel Makin (WAL)
11-5, 11-6, 12-10 (56m)
 Karim Ali Fathi (EGY) bt  Ravi Dixit (IND)
11-7, 11-6, 15-13 (60m)
 Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) bt Hossam Nasser (EGY)
11-7, 11-4, 11-4 (27m)
 Harinder Pal Sandhu (IND) bt  Karim Ali Fathi (EGY)
11-8, 11-3, 11-6 (42m)
Picture by Nitesh Square