MATTHEW DENIED BRITISH FINAL BY ELSHORBAGY

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MATTHEW DENIED BRITISH FINAL BY ELSHORBAGY

Postby BarryG » Sun May 17, 2015 8:32 am

Courtesy of England Squash and Racketball:

http://www.englandsquashandracketball.com/news/matthew-denied-british-final-by-elshorbagy

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Nick Matthew was denied a fifth British Open final in Hull today when world no.1 Mohamed Elshorbagy defeated the Yorkshireman 3/1 in the semi-finals.

The Bristol-based Egyptian qualified for his first appearance in the Allam British Open decider with an 11-7, 11-7, 5-11, 11-5 victory over the third seed in 54 minutes.

Elshorbagy’s victory ended Matthew’s brave bid for a fourth British Open title after an ankle injury in his El Gouna International semi-final last month against the Egyptian had disrupted his preparations.

Matthew told his Facebook followers: "Disappointing way to end the season but sometimes you have to give both yourself & your opponent credit. Fair play to Mohamed for coming through his own injury problems & executing a very clever game plan today.

“Obviously gutted to lose today & definitely think I could have performed better. Mohamed rushed me today & my lack of movement sharpness to the front was capitalised upon.

“Having said that, semi-final of the British Open is not to be taken for granted, especially after almost not making it to the start line.

“I’ve had a great season & it’s time for a rest for both the body & mind and come back next season with renewed hunger to challenge for more titles.”

Elshorbagy, who was eliminated by Matthew at last year’s semi-final stage, was irrepressible today, moving the world no.2 to all four corners of the court with some well-crafted boasts and expertly-placed lob shots.

However, after taking a 2/0 lead, the 24-year-old had to contend with a resurgent Matthew in the third.

Buoyed by strong support from the crowd, the former world no.1 fought back with a vengeance to get a game back, but Elshorbagy rallied to retake control of the match in the fourth and make it through to the final.

“It was a really, really tough match,” Elshorbagy said afterwards. “I had to play in a very clever way as well. I had to play a completely different tactic the whole time and even Nick wasn’t at 100%. He normally doesn’t go for the kind of shots that he was going for today.

“It was quite interesting I think. Sometimes you have to just try and get the job done. That’s what I tried to do today, but I have so much respect for what he has done this week. He was getting better, but he was still far from his best at the same time today in the match."

Elshorbagy has lived in England since he was just 15, but the Egyptian believes the British Open is a tournament that everyone aspires to win.

“The British Open is special for everyone," he said. "You always want to have your name on that prestigious trophy. For me, I want it a bit more because I have Jonah [Barrington] as my coach, who is like my father figure as well who has won it six times.

“I would love to win it at least once before I finish my career. I have always been taken care of in this country really well. I live just 30 seconds away from the squash courts and the physios provide me with everything that I need.

“They are the kind of things that you want to have access to and I will always be thankful to this country for sure.”

Elshorbagy will play defending champion Gregory Gaultier in the final, after the second seed from France defeated fourth seed Miguel Angel Rodriguez in the Colombian’s first British Open semi-final 11-9, 11-3, 11-9 in 57 minutes.
Cheers!
BarryG
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