Young Egyptian sets up semi-final clash with top seed Nicol David
By HOWARD HARDING – Squash Mad Correspondent
Egypt’s Nour El Tayeb avenged a five-game defeat by compatriot Nour El Sherbini in January’s Tournament of Champions in New York when she upset the world No.4 in straight games in the quarter-finals of the Windy City Open presented by Guggenheim and EquiTrust Life Insurance Company – the WSA World Series squash event at the University Club of Chicago in Chicago, USA.
“I watched our match from ToC to see where I went wrong and what mistakes I made,” admitted the 21-year-old from Cairo (picture above, foreground, with El Sherbini) after her resounding 11-7, 11-9, 11-5 victory.
“I made a game plan today and stuck to it – and thankfully I was able to come through the match!”
Team-mates in Egypt’s 2012 World Team Championship-winning squad, El Tayeb and El Sherbini were marking their seventh Tour clash, with world No.7 El Tayeb celebrating her first win since October 2011.
“Nour and I are very good friends, we are even sharing a room here at this tournament, so we’ll put the match behind us now and go out for some food,” added El Tayeb, now in the Windy City semi-finals for the first time.
New York revenge was also in the air for the young Egyptian’s next opponent: World No.1 Nicol David suffered a rare quarter-final exit at this year’s Tournament of Champions when a powerful performance from Alison Waters saw the English underdog beat the favourite for only the second time in 25 meetings.
But the Malaysian was back to her supreme best at the Cathedral Hall in Chicago where David defeated Waters 12-10, 12-10, 11-7 in 40 minutes.
“Alison was on form and finding the angles today but I managed to get going midway through that first game,” explained the 31-year-old from Penang (picture above, left, with Waters) later. “She’s had a few wins over me recently so I knew I would have to work hard to win today.
“At ToC she was a better player on the day but today I was aiming to play my best and I’m really glad to come through in three games,” added David – who now faces El Tayeb in a bid to reach the 99th WSA World Tour final of her career.
Camille Serme and 2014 runner-up Raneem El Welily will celebrate their second successive appearances in the semi-finals after prevailing in the quarter-finals in the lower half of the draw.
Serme, the new world No.6 from France, ended England’s Emma Beddoes’ impressive Chicago run, beating the 16th seed 11-4, 11-2, 11-5.
El Welily, the world No.2 from Egypt, won her 10th Tour meeting with Malaysian Low Wee Wern, beating the seventh seed 9-11, 11-6, 11-3, 11-9.
Windy City Open presented by Guggenheim and EquiTrust Life Insurance Company, Chicago, USA
 Nicol David (MAS) bt  Alison Waters (ENG) 12-10, 12-10, 11-7 (40m)
 Nour El Tayeb (EGY) bt  Nour El Sherbini (EGY) 11-7, 11-9, 11-5
 Camille Serme (FRA) bt  Emma Beddoes (ENG) 11-4, 11-2, 11-5 (31m)
 Raneem El Welily (EGY) bt  Low Wee Wern (MAS) 9-11, 11-6, 11-3, 11-9 (39m)
 Nicol David (MAS) v  Nour El Tayeb (EGY)
 Raneem El Welily (EGY) v  Camille Serme (FRA)
Semi-final Head To Head records from Howard Harding:
Pictures by MARIAN KRAUS