2011

Willstrop and Gaultier make Masters Final!

Frenchman Greg Gaultier (pic ri) and England’s James Willstrop will line up in final of the Punj Lloyd PSA Masters after straight games successes in today’s semi-finals in the Indian capital New Delhi.

4th seed Gaultier, a former world No1, ended the brave run of 20-year-old Egyptian Mohamed El Shorbagy (pic le) 12-10, 11-7, 11-1 to reach his 2nd World Series final of the year – while Willstrop, the 3rd seed, despatched England team-mate Peter Barker in just 30 minutes (11-4, 11-3, 11-3) to reach his 3rd World Series final in a row.

After reaching No2 in the world rankings this month following World Series title successes in the Hong Kong Open and Kuwait PSA Cup last month, Willstrop is now just one victory away from becoming world No1 for the 1st time in his career.


El Shorbagy shakes off Darwish in Delhi!

Egypt’s Mohamed El Shorbagy (pic li) celebrated a career-first win over fellow countryman Karim Darwish (pic ri)in the quarter-finals of the PSA Masters when he upset the No2 seed in 4 games (11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 11-3 ) to reach the semi-finals in New Delhi. 6th seed El Shorbagy will now face Gregy Gaultier, the 4th seed from France who was in sparkling form to beat 8th seed Laurens Jan Anjema 11-5, 11-2, 11-5.

The other semi-final will be an all-English affair between 3rd seed James Willstrop and Peter Barker, the 5th seed. Willstrop beat compatriot Daryl Selby 11-7, 11-7, 9-11, 11-5 and Peter Barker earned his 1st win over Ramy Ashour since August 2006 when he beat the top-seeded Egyptian 11-13, 11-7, 11-8, 11-1, as the former world No1 was suffering injury again and Barker claimed victory.


Round two complete in Delhi!

After day 2 of the 2nd round action of the PSA Masters in Delhi, it will be the top 8 seeds who contest the quarter-finals in India. In today’s matches all 4 challengers faced uphill tasks, having never beaten their respective opponents before, and none of those records were broken. British champion Daryl Selby dropped the 3rd game against Germany’s Simon Rosner to win 11-7, 11-6, 8-11, 11-5.

James Willstrop edged a close 1st game against Alister Walker before easing though (12-10, 11-4, 11-5 ). Top seed Ramy Ashour (pic le), returning to action after missing the last few events through injury, took the 11-5, 12-14, 11-2, 11-4 victory against Cameron Pilley (pic ri). Ashour now meets Englishman Peter Barker, who ended home hopes with a 4 game win (11-5, 11-8, 6-11, 11-5 ) over Saurav Ghosal.


Favorites marches on in New Delhi!

The opening match saw Egypt’s 6th seed Mohamed El Shorbagy (pic ri) beating Spaniard Borja Golan 11-6, 11-8, 6-11, 11-7. El Shorbagy will now face fellow countryman Karim Darwish after the No2 seed despatched England’s Tom Richards 11-3, 11-4, 11-6. Laurens Jan Anjema (pic le), the 8th overcame Omar Mosaad from Egypt 11-4, 7-11, 11-7, 11-5 to reach the quarter-finals of the Punj Lloyd PSA Masters in New Delhi.

Earlier in the day Malaysian Azlan went down 11-7, 11-6, 11-8 in 39 minutes to Frenchman Greg Gaultier, the No4 seed who won the PSA World Series Qatar Classic in October. Anjema and Gaultier will now face each other for a place in the semi-finals. Remaining 2nd round line-up: [3] James Willstrop (ENG) v Alister Walker (BOT); [7] Daryl Selby (ENG) v Simon Rosner (GER); [5] Peter Barker (ENG) v Saurav Ghosal (IND); [1] Ramy Ashour (EGY) v Cameron Pilley (AUS).


Ghosal grabs last 16 slot in Delhi!

Saurav Ghosal (pic) ensured surprise home interest in the 2nd round of the Punj Lloyd PSA Masters in India after upsetting higher-ranked US champion Julian Illingworth (12-10, 11-4, 11-2) in today’s 2nd part of the 1st round in New Delhi. Later on England’s new world No2 James Willstrop secure his place in the 2nd round, by recovering from a game down against Nicolas Mueller before going on to beat the Swiss 8-11, 11-7, 11-5, 11-5.

Further 1st round results: Alister Walker (BOT) bt Alan Clyne (SCO) 11-5, 11-6, 11-5 (28m); Simon Rosner (GER) bt Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY) 11-7, 11-6, 11-4 (34m); [7] Daryl Selby (ENG) bt Mohammed Abbas (EGY) 11-4, 11-7, 11-9 (33m); [5] Peter Barker (ENG) bt Olli Tuominen (FIN) 11-4, 11-4, 11-1 (25m); Cameron Pilley (AUS) bt Jonathan Kemp (ENG) 11-5, 9-11, 11-4, 13-11 (55m); [1] Ramy Ashour (EGY) bt Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS) 9-11, 11-3, 11-4, 11-9 (42m).


Richards downs Ashour in New Delhi!

England’s Tom Richards (pic le) caused the first notable upset in the Punj Lloyd PSA Masters in India when he defeated Egypt’s world No13 Hisham Ashour (pic ri) in the 1st round in New Delhi. Richards battled hard to secure his career-first straight games victory over Ashour, ranked 8 places higher, winning 14-12, 12-10, 11-6 in 35 minutes to secure a place in the 2nd round. Next upset in India was produced by Borja Golan’s, when the Spaniard beat world No19 Adrian Grant 12-10, 11-6, 11-4 in 51 minutes.

Remaining 1st round (top half of draw) results: [2] Karim Darwish (EGY) bt Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 12-10, 11-5, 11-4 (32m); [6] Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY) bt Stephen Coppinger (RSA) 11-7, 13-15, 11-6, 11-5 (60m); [8] Laurens Jan Anjema (NED) bt Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY) 11-7, 11-6, 11-9 (45m); Omar Mosaad (EGY) bt Chris Ryder (ENG) 8-11, 11-3, 11-7, 11-9 (50m); Mohd Azlan Iskandar (MAS) bt Ong Beng Hee (MAS) 11-6, 11-9, 11-8 (61m); [4] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt Siddharth Suchde (IND) 11-4, 11-1, 11-6 (46m).


Rodriguez flourishes in Florida!

Miguel Angel Rodriguez (pic) justified his top billing in the Florida State Open in the USA – but the top seed from Colombia was taken the full distance in Boca Raton. World No36 Rodriguez, celebrating his 25th Tour final appearance, was facing Kamran Khan, the 21-year-old Malaysian who made the final as No3 seed after upsetting 2nd-seeded Frenchman Yann Perrin in the semis.

Khan twice levelled the match after the 25-year-old from Bogota opened up leads – and forced the final two games into tie-breaks before Rodriguez ultimately prevailed 11-8, 3-11, 11-3, 10-12, 12-10.


Matthew out of PSA Masters!

An injury sustained in last month’s PSA Kuwait Cup has forced top seed Nick Matthew to withdraw from next week’s Punj Lloyd PSA Masters, the 9th and final 2011 World Series event in India. Title success in the New Delhi event a year ago led the Englishman to the top of the world rankings. “I’m obviously massively disappointed and have done everything in my power to get fit in time,” said the 31-year-old Englishman, who is nursing an adductor injury. “I am going to use the extra time to come back 100% in the New Year,” added Matthew.

The withdrawal could lead to Matthew losing his world No1 ranking as compatriot James Willstrop is enjoying the best form of his life – and this month moved up to 2nd place in the rankings after back-to-back victories, winning the Hong Kong Open and the Kuwait PSA Cup.

Should the 28-year-old Willstrop win the 2011 Punj Lloyd PSA Masters, he will overtake Matthew to become world No1 in January – the 1st time of his life. Willstrop is the No3 seed in Delhi, and begins his PSA Masters campaign against Swiss No1 Nicolas Mueller.

Matthew’s withdrawal moves Ramy Ashour to top seed and fellow Egyptian Karim Darwish to the position of 2nd seed. Ashour, the previous world No1, is marking his return to the PSA World Tour after a hamstring injury caused his withdrawal from the World Open in November. Ashour faces Malaysia’s Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan in the first round, while Darwish now takes on Australian Ryan Cuskelly.

France’s Greg Gaultier moves into the 4th seed position and now lines up against local player Siddharth Suchde. Dutchman Laurens Jan Anjema becomes the new No8 seed and will now face Egypt’s Mohd Ali Anwar Reda. It is also an Egyptian that takes up the vacancy in the draw provided by Matthew’s departure. Omar Abdel Aziz, the world No42 from Cairo, will meet line up against Germany’s Simon Rosner.

The $165,000 championship gets underway in New Delhi on Monday (12 December) and reaches its final the following Sunday.

Revised 1st round draw:
[2] Karim Darwish (EGY) v Ryan Cuskelly (AUS)
Hisham Mohamed Ashour (EGY) v Tom Richards (ENG)
Adrian Grant (ENG) v Borja Golan (ESP)
[6] Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY) v Stephen Coppinger (RSA)
[8] Laurens Jan Anjema (NED) v Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY)
Omar Mosaad (EGY) v Chris Ryder (ENG)
Mohd Azlan Iskandar (MAS) v Ong Beng Hee (MAS)
[4] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) v Siddharth Suchde (IND)
[3] James Willstrop (ENG) v Nicolas Mueller (SUI)
Alister Walker (BOT) v Alan Clyne (SCO)
Simon Rosner (GER) v Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY)
[7] Daryl Selby (ENG) v Mohammed Abbas (EGY)
[5] Peter Barker (ENG) v Olli Tuominen (FIN)
Julian Illingworth (USA) v Saurav Ghosal (IND)
Cameron Pilley (AUS) v Jonathan Kemp (ENG)
[1] Ramy Ashour (EGY) v Mohd Nafiizwan Adnan (MAS)

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