Raneem denies David in KL final

It was an Egyptian double for Raneem El Weleily and Tarek Momen in two dramatic CIMB Malaysian Open finals at The Curve shopping mall in Kuala Lumpur.

Unseeded Momen overcame compatriot Mohamed El Shorbagy, the second seed, in a five game thriller in which his opponent held game balls in all five games, while El Weleily, the world number two, denied home hero Nicol David an eighth Malaysian Open title in a row as she ended the world number one’s 42-match and eight-tournament winning streak.

CIMB Malaysian Open Finals:

Tarek Momen (Egy) 3-2 [2] Mohamed El Shorbagy (Egy) 12/10, 6/11, 12/10, 8/11, 14/12 (109m)

[2] Raneem El Weleily (Egy) 3-1 [1] Nicol David (Mas)   12/10, 11/13, 11/6, 11/2 (36m)

Match Points – Men’s Final

1: Shorbagy makes the faster start as he opens up a 4/0 lead, but Momen extends the rallies and levels at 4-all. It’s level to 7-all but Shorbagy pulls away to 10-7, but as yesterday fails to finish it off as Momen takes five points in a row to lead 12/10.

2: Shorbagy starts well again for a 4/1 lead in the second, and as Momen starts to show a bit of frustration extends to 10/3. Momen saves three game balls again, but that’s not enough this time as Shorbagy levels 11/6.

3: Four-all is the theme so far as Shorbagy again leads, 4/2, and is again pegged back. The second seed keeps just ahead though, at 7/6, extends it to 10/6. This time Tarek saves four game balls to level, and adds two more to retake the lead 12/10 as Shorbagy tins.

4: In the fourth it’s Momen who has the early edge, leading 3/1, but Shorbagy comes back to lead 5/3. The swings continue, four in a row for Tarek to lead 7/5. Getting tense now with a lot of lets as Shorbagy regains the advantage to lead 9/8. Tarek tins a volley to give Shorbagy two game balls and a fistpump from Mohamed as he takes it at the first attempt.

5: Shorbagy is used to playing fifth games now, it’s his third in a row, but again Momen starts better to lead 3/1. Shorbagy levels 3-all, lots more lets, 4-all, 5-all, 6-all, 7-all. Shorbagy drops his way to a 9/7 lead then tins for 9/8. Tense. A dying length from Tarek and it’s 9-all. Shorbagy tins and it’s match ball Momen, a flick drop and Shorbagy forces extra points.

A Momen boast clips the tin for match ball 11/10. Shorbagy thinks his drop has won it but it’s a let, same thing happens again on the other side of the court. At the third time of asking it’s a stroke to Tarek for 11-all. Tarek tins a winning drop, then slots one in for 12-all. Shorbagy’s turn to tin gives Tarek another match ball, and he controls the rally before finally putting in the title-winning shot.

That’s two titles in a row and three in all for Tarek.

Match Points – Women’s Final

1: A 2-0 start for Weleily but David gets the crowd going with a run of 5 points to lead 5-2. Raneem recovers and leads 8/6, extends to 10/6 with a pair of lovely drops. Showing Tarek-like tenacity David takes four in a row to level at 10-all, but tins to give Raneem anther chance which she takes with another fine drophot.

2: David’s dropped a game in each of her last three matches so it’s far from panic time and she takes a 3/1 lead. Raneem’s still going for her shots though, and pulls it back to 4-all. More winners and errors from the Egyptian, it’s 6-all, 7-all. Nicol’s turn to drop her way to a 9/7 lead, gets the better of a long rally to lead 10/8, but Raneem gets it back to 10-all. Nicol guues one to the sidewall for 11-10 but Raneem’s crosscourt levels again. Nicol scurries, Raneem tins an opportunity, then tins again as Nicol levels 13/11.

3: Raneem’s not deterred as she leads 4/1 with some quick rallies, stays in control of them extending to 7/3. They trade points to 9/5 then 10/6 mainly on Raneem’s winners or errors. One chance only needed this time as the Egyptian retakes the lead 11/6.

4: Raneem leads 2-0, is it panic time yet? It could be, Nicol tins for 3-0, Raneem drops for 4-0, another tin 5-0. A couple of points back for Nicol for 5-2, but another tine for 7-2. A glued drop for 8-2, a stroke for 9-2. Start panicking. A tin and another clinging drive and it’s all over as Raneem lets out a shriek of delight.

It’s only a fifth WSA title for Raneem, a long way behind Nicol’s 62, but expect that gap to close …

Two Egyptian winners in Malaysia – Andrew Cross reports

Tarek Momen and Raneem El Weleily stole the show in the CIMB Malaysian Open 2012 competition.

Tarek and Mohammed El Shorbagy took to the court first in what was a mammoth final that went all the way to a deciding fifth tie break. This was very similar to the match that they played here two years ago and as the head to head looks that was Tarek’s only win against Shorbagy. Today he added to that but Shorbagy had enough chances to win all five games. He often led throughout all five games but couldn’t quite finish it off, he led 10-7 in the first before losing 12-10. The second he won after converting a huge lead from 4.1 to 10.3. However Tarek fought back to win some points and get himself back into the zone for the third as he looked frustrated in the second.

The third was similar to the first as Shorbagy reached game ball at 10.6 but again Tarek found a run of 6 points to take the game 12.10 as Shorbagy hit a tin at game ball down.

Momen begins the fourth well leading but this time it is Shorbagy that fights back to take a 5-3 lead, four points in a row though take Tarek to 7-5 and there are becoming more and more lets now. Both seem to be getting edgy and tense now as we move towards the closing stages of this game. Shorbagy held on though to take the game 11-8.

In the fifth its close all the way we are through the game level pegging all the way and both are now getting more and more frustrated as the decision of the referees doesn’t seem to be consistent. Tarek reached game ball first but couldn’t convert, Shorbagy had a chance to win and probably should have had a stroke but not given as Tarek never looked back and went on to win the fifth for his second title in two weeks.

Raneem took to the court against Nicol David in front of her home crowd but the crowd was stunned as Raneem played some of the best squash we have probably ever seen her play. Raneem played unbelievable as the whole crowd seemed stunned as to what they were witnessing. Raneem was controlling the rallies, dictating the play, hitting winners from every possible position. Raneem was just either hitting winners or errors it was just superb to watch and as she said in her post match interview she was under no pressure in comparison to yesterday.

We discussed how good Nicol has been in tie breaks and how good she has been throughout her career towards the end of games and in finals but in the fourth game Nicol just had no answers to Raneems amazing racket skills.

Despite losing Nicol was as gracious as ever in defeat as she continued to pose for photographers and please all her adoring fans. What’s great is that the players are willing to give up their own time to come and help the younger Malaysian players improve their games.

Nour El Sherbini and Omneya Adbel Kawy were great yesterday and Omar Mossad was brilliant today and we thank them for that.


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