Peter Barker bows out against top seed Mohamed Elshorbagy
By NATHAN CLARKE in Hong Kong
French qualifier Lucas Serme pulled off the biggest win of his career to date as he stunned former World No.5 Borja Golan in the first round of the 2015 Men’s Cathay Pacific Sun Hung Kai Financial Hong Kong Open, PSA World Series tournament, currently taking place at the Hong Kong Squash centre.
The 23-year-old World No.49 put in a fine performance as he nullified the Spanish World No.17 in a bruising 74-minute encounter, utilising all four corners of the court as he came from one game behind to record an impressive victory that sees him progress to the second round of a PSA World Series tournament for the first time in his career, where World Championship runner-up Omar Mossad awaits.
“That’s probably one of the best results I’ve had in my career so far so I’m just ecstatic with the win,” said Serme.
“I’ve watched a lot of his matches since I was young so I knew his game and he maybe didn’t know too much about me. I was able to read him well and I think I frustrated him. I tried not to make many mistakes and just stick in there during the longer rallies and I think it was a case of him breaking before me
“It’s a great win for my rankings and a boost for me in terms of confidence so it’s all positive. and hopefully I can play well again in the next round.”
Mossad booked his place in the second round with an accomplished victory over local favourite Max Lee, coming through 12-10, 11-7, 7-11, 11-5, while World No.1 Mohamed Elshorbagy rebounded from his disappointing third round exit at the World Championship with a straightforward 3-1 victory over Peter Barker, which signalled the end of the Englishman’s career after he announced this would be his last competitive tournament.
“Peter is a player I have admired and looked up to since I was a kid so it was an honour for me to be his last opponent on the PSA World Tour,” said Elshorbagy following their encounter.
Elsewhere on day one of action there were wins for Daryl Selby, Mathieu Castagnet, Chris Simpson, Saurav Ghosal and Miguel Angel Rodriguez.
In the women’s draw, Malaysian Low Wee Wern celebrated her comeback to the PSA World Tour after a nine-month absence with a hard fought victory over Coline Aumard.
A knee injury had prevented the 25-year-old from competing on tour since February’s Windy City Open and she was given a tough welcome back by the tenacious Frenchwomen in a gritty 67 minute match.
Low looked to be heading for an early exit when she found herself 2-1 down but managed to force a decisive fifth game and went on to save three match balls to keep her tournament alive, eventually coming through 11-7, 4-11, 9-11, 11-5, 14-12.
“I’m still not moving that well because I still have some pain in my knee,” said Low.
“I had to really slow it down on there because my movement is hampered. I was a little lucky in the end but it’s great to get a win – it’s very pleasing.
“Once you’re an athlete you always want to win and compete. I’ve missed so much and I don’t want to miss out on any more.”
Low is joined in the second round by World No.1 and No.2 Raneem El Welily and Laura Massaro, after they eased through their opening encounters at the Hong Kong Squash Centre while there were also wins for Jenny Duncalf, Amanda Sobhy, Nouran Gohar, Emily Whitlcok and Heba El Torky.
2015 Men’s Hong Kong Open, PSA World Series.
Results – Men’s First Round (Top Half):
 Mohamed Elshorbagy (EGY) bt Peter Barker (ENG) 3-1: 11-6, 11-7, 5-11, 11-8 (33m)
Saurav Ghosal (IND) bt Stephen Coppinger (RSA) 3-2: 9-11, 11-3, 12-10, 9-11, 11-9 (76m)
Daryl Selby (ENG) bt Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) 3-1: 12-14, 11-6, 11-6, 11-4 (69m)
 Mathieu Castagnet (FRA) bt [Q] Greg Lobban (SCO) 3-0: 11-5, 11-9, 11-5 (39m)
 Omar Mosaad (EGY) bt Max Lee (HKG) 3-1: 12-10, 11-7, 7-11, 11-5 (56m)
[Q] Lucas Serme (FRA) bt Borja Golan (ESP) 3-1: 10-12, 11-6, 12-10, 14-12 (74m)
Chris Simpson (ENG) bt Alan Clyne (SCO) 3-0: 11-7, 11-5, 11-3 (54m)
 Miguel Angel Rodriguez (COL) bt [Q] Gregoire Marche (FRA) 3-1: 6-11, 11-6, 11-3, 8-3 retired (46m)
First Round (Bottom Half):
 Gregory Gaultier (FRA) v [WC] Leo Au (HKG)
James Willstrop (ENG) v Ryan Cuskelly (AUS)
Cameron Pilley (AUS) v [Q] Rex Hedrick (AUS)
[Q] Olli Tuominen (FIN) v  Simon Rösner (GER)
 Tarek Momen (EGY) v [Q] Declan James (ENG)
Tom Richards (ENG) v [Q] Tsz Fung Yip (HKG)
Mazen Hesham (EGY) v [Q] Zahed Mohamed (EGY)
Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) v  Nick Matthew (ENG)
Results – First Round (Top Half) 2015 Women’s Hong Kong Open, PSA World Series:
 Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt [Q] Siyoli Waters (RSA) 3-0: 11-7, 11-4, 11-4 (24m)
 Low Wee Wern (MAS) bt [Q] Coline Aumard (FRA) 3-2: 11-7, 4-11, 9-11, 11-5, 14-12 (67m)
 Jenny Duncalf (ENG) bt Line Hansen (DEN) 3-1: 11-6, 11-7, 9-11, 11-1 (40m)
 Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Donna Urquhart (AUS) 3-0: 11-8, 11-8, 11-5 (28m)
 Nouran Gohar (EGY) bt Joey Chan (HKG) 3-1: 11-5, 11-6, 7-11, 11-4 (38m)
 Emily Whitlock (ENG) bt [Q] Samantha Teran (MEX) 3-0: 11-9, 11-1, 12-10 (43m)
 Heba El Torky (EGY) bt [Q] Vanessa Chu (HKG) 3-0: 11-7, 11-7, 11-6 (29m)
 Laura Massaro (ENG) bt [Q] Christine Nunn (AUS) 3-0: 11-4, 11-4, 11-5 (26m)
Draw – First Round (Bottom Half):
 Camille Serme (FRA) v Tesni Evans (WAL)
Habiba Mohamed (EGY) v  Dipika Pallikal (IND)
 Rachael Grinham (AUS) v [Q] Ho Tze-Lok (HKG)
[Q] Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL) v  Omneya Abdel Kawy (EGY)
 Annie Au (HKG) v Joelle King (NZL)
[Q] Megan Craig (NZL) v  Joshna Chinappa (IND)
 Delia Arnold (MAS) v Nicolette Fernandes (GUY)
[WC] Liu Tsz-Ling (HKG) v  Nicol David (MAS)
Pictures courtesy of PSA