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Fabulous fireworks as Ramy Ashour takes El Gouna title

Lee Horton
Lee Hortonhttps://squashmad.com
Former Sun, Mirror, People and Sunday Express sports executive. Knows a bit about newspapers and the art of talking a good game. Brighter than some but a way to go to match others.

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Mountain too far for Mohamed Elshorbagy as he falls to Ramy’s magic in a superb all-Egyptian final

ramychampegRamy Ashour returned to peak form as he overcame fellow Egyptian Mohamed Elshorbagy to retain his El Gouna International Open title.

World No.4  Ashour was always the favourite, despite being one place lower in the rankings than his young compatriot.

There were some spectacular fireworks as the presentation ceremony brought the curtain down on an explosive tournament. And there had been plenty of fireworks on court as Ashour beat World No.3  Elshorbagy 3-1 in 71 minutes, with a scoreline of 11-7, 12-10, 8-11, 11-8.

Ashour was in scintillating form as he saw off his younger opponent, who came into the match following an epic 112-minute victory over World No.1 Gregory Gaultier of France in the semi-finals, to win his first PSA World Series title since he claimed the 2013 British Open.

The maverick Egyptian, who endured an injury-plagued four months from October 2013 – January 2014, looked to be back at his devastating best throughout the entire tournament as he romped to the final without dropping a single game and proved too much for the ever-determined Elshorbagy.

“I’ve never felt better,” said Ashour following the victory.

“I’m overwhelmed to win the title and I’m very happy with my performance today – I thought it was a great match.”

Ashour looked to be on his way to a completing a clean sweep after taking the first two games 11-7, 12-10, but it was a match in which the younger Egyptian never gave up and his determination was rewarded when he dug deep to take the third game 11-8.

But Cairo-based Ashour responded in fashion to win a fiercely contested fourth game 11-8 and take the title following 71-minutes of scintillating squash which delighted the packed house in El Gouna.

“Mohamed is one of the most explosive and best players around. He’s got many different attributes and is a threat to all the top players,” added Ashour.

“He’s already a top five player and he’s definitely going to be one to watch but I’m happy to win today.”

2014 EL Gouna International Squash Open – Final:
[2] Ramy Ashour (EGY) bt [3] Mohamed Elshorbagy (EGY) 3-1: 11-7, 12-10, 8-11, 11-8 (71m)


Picture by Steve Cubbins for the official tournament website

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