ElShorbagy and Farag seeded to clash again
By SEAN REUTHE
The world’s top four male players – including defending champion and World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy – will appear at the Channel VAS Championships at St George’s Hill between October 16-21 when the fourth edition of the PSA World Tour Gold tournament takes place at the St George’s Hill Lawn and Tennis Club in Weybridge, England.
ElShorbagy defeated World No.2 Ali Farag in last year’s final and the pair met in Monday’s final of the Oracle Netsuite Open in San Francisco, with Farag winning a thrilling encounter in four games. The pair will appear in Weybridge once again alongside ElShorbagy’s younger brother, World No.3 Marwan, and 2016 runner-up Tarek Momen.
Mohamed is drawn on the same side of the draw as Momen, while Farag and Marwan are seeded to meet in the other semi-final fixture.
Former World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad will make his first ever appearance at this tournament and is predicted to meet Farag at the quarter-finals stage.
Meanwhile, New Zealand’s Paul Coll – who shocked the squash world when he rose through qualifying to take the title in 2016 – will make his return to Weybridge. As one of the top eight seeds, Coll receives a bye into round two, where he will play either former World No.1 James Willstrop or Egypt’s Omar Abdel Meguid.
Willstrop is one of seven Englishmen to compete in the draw and he is joined by Open International de Squash de Nantes winner Declan James, World No.21 Daryl Selby, World No.30 Tom Richards, World No.37 Adrian Waller, World No.39 Chris Simpson and tournament wildcard Charlie Lee, the local favourite who is ranked at No.87 in the world.
Peru’s Diego Elias and last year’s semi-finalist Saurav Ghosal are the number seven and eight seeds, respectively, and the pair are seeded to play the ElShorbagy players in the quarter-finals. Elias is set to meet Mohamed, while Ghosal could come up against Marwan.
Matches held on the glass court will be shown live on SQUASHTV (Rest of World) and Eurosport Player (Europe only).
Tickets can be purchased from Ticketmaster, with prices starting at £16.85: https://www.ticketmaster.co.uk/artist/2295837
2018 Channel VAS Championships at St George’s Hill.
Main Draw – First Round:
 Mohamed ElShorbagy (EGY) [bye]
Joel Makin (WAL) v [9/16] Raphael Kandra (GER)
[9/16] Daryl Selby (ENG) v Greg Lobban (SCO)
 Diego Elias (PER) [bye]
 Paul Coll (NZL) [bye]
Omar Abdel Meguid (EGY) v [9/16] James Willstrop (ENG)
[9/16] Cameron Pilley (AUS) v Chris Simpson (ENG)
 Tarek Momen (EGY) [bye]
 Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) [bye]
[WC] Charlie Lee (ENG) v [9/16] Omar Mosaad (EGY)
[9/16] Mathieu Castagnet (FRA) v Lucas Serme (FRA)
 Saurav Ghosal (IND) v [bye]
 Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) [bye]
Tom Richards (ENG) v [9/16] Borja Golan (ESP)
[9/16] Declan James (ENG) v Adrian Waller (ENG)
 Ali Farag (EGY) [bye]
Picture courtesy of PSA