Monday, May 20, 2024

Kawy conquers giant-killer Gohar in Women’s World Championship

Another all-Egyptian showdown in Cairo as Omneya Abdel Kawy halts teenage sensation Nouran Gohar
By HOWARD HARDING – Squash Mad Correspondent

Nouran Gohar does the splits against Omneya Abdel Kawy
Nouran Gohar does the splits against Omneya Abdel Kawy

Egypt’s former runner-up Omneya Abdel Kawy halted the advance of ‘giant-killer’ Nouran Gohar in the Wadi Degla Women’s World Squash Championship in Cairo when she beat her 17-year-old compatriot in the second round of the Women’s Squash Association championship at the Wadi Degla club in the Egyptian capital.

It was just 24 hours earlier that championship debutante Gohar despatched 2013 runner-up Nour El Sherbini, the event’s fourth seed, to create the opening round’s biggest upset.

But 10th seed Abdel Kawy (pictured above, right, with Gohar), losing finalist in the event’s last staging in Egypt in 2010, made sure of her place in the last eight by beating the teenager 13-11, 11-6, 13-11 – saving three game-balls in the third – in 38 minutes.

In her seventh appearance in the quarter-finals since 2005, the world No.10 from Cairo will face No.7 seed Low Wee Wern.

Low Wee Wern moves forward against Joshna Chinappa
Low Wee Wern moves forward against Joshna Chinappa

The world No.7 from Malaysia survived her second five-game marathon in two days when she outlasted unseeded Indian Joshana Chinappa 6-11, 11-3, 11-13, 11-7, 11-8 in 64 minutes to reach the last eight for the fifth time in a row.

The quarter-final clash will mark only the third meeting of Wee Wern (pictured above, left, with Chinappa) and Abdel Kawy’s careers – with their head-to-head poised on one-all.

“Omneya has one of the best hands of the circuit – it’s only going to get harder from here,” said the 24-year-old Malaysian.

Favourite Nicol David secured her anticipated place in the last eight – but only after being pushed for two games by English qualifier Emily Whitlock.

The 20-year-old world No.29 led for virtually all of the first game, only to see David snatch it 12-10, and was 9-8 ahead in the second, which the world number one took 11-9. David dominated the third, closing out the match 11-1.

Bidding to win a record eighth title, David will face French rival Camille Serme in a repeat of their 2013 world championship quarter-final clash.

Serme, the No.6 seed from Creteil, battled for 50 minutes to overcome Emma Beddoes, the 16th seed from England, 11-5, 11-13, 11-4, 11-4.

Both players commented on the match via Twitter: “Happy with my win 3-1 over a strong Emma Beddoes,” said Serme. “Happy to make the quarter final of this world open.”

Beddoes was also upbeat: “My world champs are over as I lost 3/1 to Camille tonight. But what an amazing 2014 it’s been, now for Christmas!”

Wadi Degla 2014 Women’s World Squash Championship, Cairo, Egypt

Second round (top half of draw):
[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt [Q] Emily Whitlock (ENG) 12-10, 11-9, 11-1 (42m)
[6] Camille Serme (FRA) bt [16] Emma Beddoes (ENG) 11-5, 11-13, 11-4, 11-4 (50m)
[7] Low Wee Wern (MAS) bt Joshana Chinappa (IND) 6-11, 11-3, 11-13, 11-7, 11-8 (64m)
[10] Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY) bt Nouran Gohar (EGY) 13-11, 11-6, 13-11 (38m)

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