Top-seed Tarek takes out fellow Egyptian and meets another in the final
By ANDREW CROSS – Squash Mad Reporter in Macau
The Macau Open semi-finals moved to the all glass court, set against the wonderful backdrop of the casinos and hotels that surround Macau.
The day began with lots of activities for the younger kids of Macau as they look for the event to provide inspiration to a new group of players. A squash clinic, inflatable court and many more activities tried to encourage people to pick up a racket and play.
After two outstanding women’s matches, PSA top seed Tarek Momen was up against Egyptian team-mate Mazen Hesham, both looking to see who had recovered better from their brutal five-setters of the previous day.
Tarek led the opening game 9-5 when a stroke took him to 10-6 and a very nice forehand drop gave him the opening game.
Mazen forged ahead in the second, leading 8-7, but Tarek stormed back to win the next four points and take a two game advantage.
Mazen held a more commanding lead of 7-3 in game three, but it was Tarek that fought back to draw level at 7.7 and eventually convert the moment that he had into an 11-9 game win.
A relieved Tarek revealed: “It’s always a huge mental battle playing a fellow Egyptian even before we have got on court so Im very happy to win. Yesterday was tough. It was a mental roller-coaster, saving two match balls. Then today, going through to the final, I’m very happy”.
Last match of the evening saw Ong Beng Hee from Malaysia taking on Omar Mosaad from Egypt, both players having played each other numerous times in the last couple of years.
The exchanges and the rallies were hard. Beng Hee created a two-point lead but just couldn’t quite get the extra couple of points that he needed, so the opening game went to Omar 11-8.
In the second, Beng Hee again held a two-point advantage. He created a golden opportunity on the forehand but hit the side wall and Omar crunched one past him.
In the next rally Beng Hee missed a drop and it evened up the score. A winner from Mosaad and a tin from Beng Hee gave the second game to the big Egyptian.
In the third, Omar began well, leading 7-3, but Beng Hee wasn’t done yet, fighting back to lead 8-7. However, the Malaysian could not maintain the pressure and Mosaad dominated the closing stages to Omar win the last four points.
He confirmed his progress to the final with a dying backhand drive at match ball.
Omar said: “I am so happy to make the final after winning here last year. Me and Beng Hee have played so many times recently that we know each other’s games very well and he is much more experienced than me.”
Macau Open semi-finals.
(1) Tarek Momen (Egypt) beat (6) Mazen Hesham (Egypt) 11-7, 11-8, 11-9
(2) Omar Mosaad (Egypt) beat (7) Ong Beng Hee (Malaysia) 11-8 12-10 11-8.
Pictures courtesy of PSA and Macau Open