Elshorbagy pushes hard but Ashour holds his nerve to lift second World Series title
EGYPTIAN maestro Ramy Ashour survived a titanic 63-minute battle with Mohamed Elshorbagy to land his second World Series crown in an electrifying final in Richmond, Virginia.
Ashour, champion in 2007, withstood a brutal match-up with his fellow Egyptian, winning 15-17, 11-7, 11-4, 11-5 in a contest that was peppered with thrilling rallies,heart-stopping drama and scintillating squash which thrilled the prestigious Westwood Club crowd.
It was the first time that two Egyptians have met in the final of the PSA World Series title decider and Cairo-based Ashour, who’s past four months have been injury plagued, said he was privileged to take on his Alexandrian compatriot with the title on the line.
“I’m really, really proud to win such a prestigious event,” said Ashour.
“Everyone would love to win this event and I really pushed myself and focused from the first point of the week until the last point of the week which gives me a lot of confidence mentally.
“It’s been a great week overall and I think my performances were good and I was really proud that both of us were in the final today.
“It’s the first time that there’s been two Egyptian in the World Series Finals final and this kind of success can help uplift spirits back home in Egypt.
“We’ve gone through a lot of turmoil in recent years. It’s still not over but it’s getting better and better. We do what we can to raise the flag through squash and doing our best and we have faith that very soon things will be in a much better state than they were before.”
It was Elshorbagy who took the opening game in a nailbiting 17-15 tie-break but that challenge forced Ashour to raise his game. And the former world No.1 and two-time world champion responded to produce some of his best squash to see off his younger challenger.
“It was a brutal match and both of us were really hungry to win that opening game and it’s credit to him that it went his way,” he said.
“He deserved to win that game and I had to come back with a different plan from the second game and thankfully it worked.
“It definitely wasn’t easy. He’s very explosive and catches you off guard so you have to be on your toes and you have to really dig-in and make sure that every point counts and I’m happy to have won.”
Elshorbagy said: “I have had an amazing week here in Richmond. I gave it everything in the final and I am happy to see Ramy back at his best.”
World Series Finals – Final Result:
Ramy Ashour (EGY) bt Mohamed Elshorbagy (EGY) 3-1: 15-17, 11-7, 11-4, 11-5 [63 mins]