Essex boys Richie Fallows and Yousef Abdalla (pictured left) hit the ground running as they opened their qualifying bid for the 10k PSA Valencia 2013 event in Spain.
Within hours of landing in the Iberian city, the two Redbridge-based players began their challenge even before they had opened their suitcases. But the rush start did not stop them progressing to the second qualifying round both notching impressive wins.
The flamboyant Abdalla, one of the most exciting young talents on the circuit, looked in big trouble after going two down against local player Carlos Cornes. But the 20-year-old, who worships Egyptian superstar Ramy Ashour, emulated his hero hitting some outrageous winners against the highest seeded qualifier as he took the win in five.
Four hours later Fallows, ranked 168 in the world and currently England No.1 under-19 junior, stepped on court with fellow junior from Portugal, Claudio Pinto. After losing a close first, Fallow raised the tempo and took the game by the scruff winning 3-1.
Then it was back to the hotel to finally unpack their perfectly laundered kit. No news whether the lads managed to find TOWIE on local TV.
Day Two on court, the intrepid duo completed the first phase of their mission and booked themselves into the main draw.
Youseff came through his second gruelling five seater again coming from two down to beat Jonas Daehler of Switzerland, 4-11; 8-11;11-2;12-10; 11-8.
Richie meanwhile beat Tom De Mulder of Belgium 3-1, 11-9; 4-11;6-11; 4-11.
The boys finally bowed out in the first round but put down huge markers for the future.
Caro Lifts Home Hopes in Valencia
10 October 2013
RESULTS: PSA Challenger 10 PSA Valencia, Valencia, Spain
1st round:  Karim Ali Fathi (EGY) bt Alex Ingham (ENG) 11-6, 11-7, 11-8 (39m) Geoffrey Demont (FRA) bt Nathan Lake (ENG) 9-11, 2-11, 12-10, 12-10, 11-7 (75m) [WC] Alejandro Garbi Caro (ESP) bt Yann Perrin (FRA) 9-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-6 (60m)  Joel Hinds (ENG) bt [Q] Chris Fuller (ENG) 10-12, 14-12, 11-9, 11-7 (74m)  Jens Schoor (GER) bt [Q] Youssef Abdalla (ENG) 11-2, 11-3, 11-7 (25m) Zahed Mohamed (EGY) bt Johan Bouquet (FRA) 11-7, 11-4 ret. (12m) Joan Lezaud (FRA) bt [Q] Sebastiaan Weenink (NED) 13-15, 12-10, 10-12, 11-4, 12-10  Kristian Frost Olesen (DEN) bt [Q] Richie Fallows (ENG) 11-4, 11-3, 11-7 (45m)
Local wild card Alejandro Garbi Caro thrilled the partisan crowd at Club Olympia in the Spanish city of Valencia when he fought back from a game down to beat experienced Frenchman Yann Perrin in the first round of the PSA Valencia, the PSA World Tour Challenger 10 squash event in its third year.
The 30-year-old from Castellon beat Perrin 9-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-6 (both pictured below) to set up a quarter-final clash with fourth seed Joel Hinds. World No82 Hinds had to battle for 74 minutes to see off fellow Englishman Chris Fuller, a qualifier, 10-12, 14-12, 11-9, 11-7 to earn his anticipated place in the last eight.
There was another upset with French interest higher in the draw – but this time Frenchman Geoffrey Demont gained the win after recovering from two games down to beat higher-ranked Englishman Nathan Lake 9-11, 2-11, 12-10, 12-10, 11-7 in 75 minutes, the longest match of the day.
Demont, a 22-year-old from Aix-en-Provence ranked 119 in the world, will now be tested by top seed Karim Ali Fathi.
The fast-improving 20-year-old from Egypt despatched England’s Alex Ingham 11-6, 11-7, 11-8.
Quarter-final line-up:  Karim Ali Fathi (EGY) v Geoffrey Demont (FRA)  Joel Hinds (ENG) v [WC] Alejandro Garbi Caro (ESP)  Jens Schoor (GER) v Zahed Mohamed (EGY)  Kristian Frost Olesen (DEN) v Joan Lezaud (FRA)
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