It was a good day for Egypt at the Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex in Doha as men's qualifying for the 11th Qatar Classic concluded.
Egyptians claimed four of the eight places available in the PSA World Series draw, the sixth of the year, with Egyptians also winning two of the three women's first round qualifying matches played.
Men's Qualifying Finals:
Siddarth Suchde (Ind) bt Matthew Karwalski (Aus)
9/11, 11/4, 11/6, 12/10 (57m) plays Reda
Kamran Khan (Mas) bt Joey Barrington (Eng)
11/8, 11/7, 9/11, 9/11, 11/8 (90m) plays Darwish
Mohamed Abouelgar (Egy) bt Yann Perrin (Fra)
9/11, 13/11, 11/7, 11/8 (52m) plays Gaultier
Chris Ryder (Eng) bt Muhd Asyraf Azan (Mas)
11/6, 11/4, 11/2 (40m) plays Rosner
Omar Abdel Aziz (Egy) bt Jaymie Haycocks (Eng)
11/6, 7/11, 11/4, 11/3 (50m) plays Momen
Henrik Mustonen (Fin) bt Robbie Temple (Eng)
11/4, 11/4, 11/4 (31m) plays Tuominen
Marwan El Shorbagy (Egy) bt Mazen Gamal (Egy)
11/8, 11/9, 11/9 (40m) plays Boswell
Mohammed Abbas (Egy) bt Farhan Mehboob (Pak)
12/10, 12/10, 11/7 (38m) plays Willstrop
Women's Qualifying Round One:
Salma Hany (Egy) bt Salma Hatem Youssef (Egy)
11/8, 11/9, 11/8 (40m)
Farah Abdel Meguid (Egy) bt Parand Dolatyzadeh (Iri)
Tenille Van Der Merwe (Rsa) bt Fatemhalsadat Hadary (Iri)
Lauren Selby (Eng) bt Hana Essam Khaled (Egy)
11/6, 11/2, 11/1 (17m)
Merhan Amr Mahmoud (Egy) bt Maud Duplomb (Fra)
8/11, 11/2, 11/3, 11/13, 11/8 (50m)
Half for Egypt
Siddarth Suchde recovered from a game down to beat Matthew Karwalaski, the Australian who eventually got a bye yesterday who is being coached by David Palmer in Orlando. Karwalski threatened to take the match into a decider as he took a 10/6 lead in the fourth, but a final flurry of five points in a row saw the Indian through in just short of an hour
"I wouldn’t say it was a good match," said Suchde, "we were both a bit edgy, but you know what it is, when you’re trying to qualify."
Meanwhile two sons of famous fathers were battling it out on the other court. Having let a two-game lead slip before finally winning yesterday, Joey Barrington today had to come from two games down against Kamran Khan.
It was the Malaysian, son of Jansher, who got the better of the decider though, taking it 11/8 after 90 minutes of squash that was at times brutal, at times disputed, but always tough and always tense.
"I have nothing to say….. except I’m happy, well, relieved more like," said Khan.
Mohamed Abouelgar recorded the first Egyptian win of the day as the youngster came from a game down to beat France's Yann Perrin in an entertaining four-game tussle.
Chris Ryder provided the first English success, getting the better of Muhd Asyraf Azan in a comfortable three games. Ryder was unimpressed with the Malaysian's movement, but the match was never close enough for it to be an issue.
Henrik Mustonen, looking to be moving very well, also enjoyed a straight game victory, beating Robbie Temple 11/4, 11/4, 11/4, and his reward is a match against fellow-Finn Olli Tuominen!
"I played better today than I played all season," said the Finnish number two. "I did a lot of work this summer, but it was not showing on court, so it's nice to finally see some result."
The final three places were all filled by Egyptians, taking their qualifying tally to four and their main draw contingent to double figures - Omar Abdel Aziz beat Jaymie Haycocks in four; Mohamed Abbas won three close games - coming from 3/9 down in the second - to frustrate Farhan Mehboob; and Marwan El Shorbagy similarly took three close games against fellow-Egyptian Mazen Gamal.
"I played well, the right tactic, and tried my best to avoid any silly shots," said Shorbagy. "I’m really happy with the way I played."
Two out of three for Egypt in curtailed women's openers
Having already been shorn of several competitors, the women's qualifying draw saw two Iranian no-shows leaving just three first round matches to play, with more Egyptian success.
Salma Hany beat compatriot Salma Hatem Youssef in three, and Merhan Amr Mahmoud won a see-saw five-setter against France's Maud Duplomb.
England's Lauren Selby prevented an Egyptian clean sweep though with a comprehensive win over Hana Essam Khaled.