Karim Ali Fathi (Egy) 3-1
 Peter Barker (Eng) 8-11, 11-7, 11-4, 12-10
FATHI'S BEST WIN
the best win of my career," admitted Karim Ali Fathi after coming from a
game down to knock out 11th seed Peter Barker.
The young Egyptian led most of the first before Barker rallied to take
the lead, but Fathi took the next two game and came from 7-10 down in
the fourth to create the upset.
"I'm not as happy as I could be, Peter's obviously been struggling with
his movement and no-one likes to win like that, but I'll take it," said
Omar Abdel Meguid (Egy)
3-0 Olli Tuominen (Fin) 11-3, 13-11, 11-8 (29m)
UP AND DOWNÖ
It was not one match that will stay in the history book. And yet, quite
significantÖ The first game, quickly over, 7m, but in the first two
games, far too many decisions, blocking, too many discussions, difficult
for the refs to keep consistent and exactitude in their callsÖ
Basically, what we do not want to see, reminded me the other match they
played, it was the last time I was in HK, 2013, Olli took that on, 3/0Ö
And suddenly as by magic, the third was fluid, and great movement, and
lovely rallies, and great shots. Even if the last call, a no let, seems
a bit harshÖ
The third is the squash we want to see. Please.
"At the start, I wanted to
play long rallies to try and tire him, but all my length just went in,
and I didnít make any unforced errors in the first game, so it was over
In the second, I played a couple of good length, but then my shots were
or too high, or hitting the tin. I gave it a big push because I didnít
want to lose that 2nd, it would have been a big difference to be 1/1
instead of 2/0Ö
I just want to play the best I can, but I had a couple of bad results
lately, so Iím just happy to come through todayÖ"
Gaultier through in three
a moment's reflection before the all-French match, third seed Gregory
Gaultier, four times a world champs finalist, moved into round two with
a straight game win over young compatriot Lucas Serme.
"It's a tough moment for Paris, for France, for the whole world," said
"I've been thinking about this a lot, and I'll be doing my best to make
my country, my people proud."
Campbell Grayson (Nzl) 3-1
[Q] Carlos Cornes (Esp) 11-3, 11-6, 11-8 (39m)
Both players were happy playing a
similar game -- medium paced, volleying short whenever possible -- so it
was going to be a matter of who executed better. Grayson made fewer
errors, and that was enough to keep him in the driver's seat for most of
Cornes tried emulating his friend and mentor Borja Golan -- engaging the
refs with a shout of "Come on, guys!" -- and he smelled a chance in the
third at 5-6, but a tin and a tough no-let put Grayson back in command.
ďIím happy with my
performance - I just wanted to be solid and make it tough for him. It
was maybe a little scrappy at the end because I got a little tense, but
Iím happy I got off in 3.
ďI knew heíd be a feisty character as a couple of the kiwi guys told me
about him so I knew what to expect and tried not to get sucked into his
style of game and Iím pleased I managed that.
I found my length early and was moving well. The court was a little
dead, so it rewarded good shots. I tried to keep him stuck in the back,
moved him around, and volleyed whenever I could. He was volleying
effectively, so I did everything I could to keep the ball off his
This is the first time I've made it to the second round of the Worlds,
so I'm happy about that. Looking forward to a rest day and then getting
on the glass court.
ďBeing in second round and playing well here is really important for me.
I feel like Iíve been stuck at the same ranking for a long time and
matches like this at big tournament are huge. I need these experiences
for my confidence and my ranking so Iíll be giving it everything."
Ali Farag (Egy) 3-0
Kristian Frost 11-6, 11-6, 11-3 (34m)
"I was very nervous, very very
very nervous, itís not a question of an opponent, itís a question of
playing my first ever World Champs, and realising how BIG this
tournament is for me. I never felt comfortable today. Now that the
nerves are gone, maybe Iím going to enjoying it a bit moreÖ
"Last time was in India last year, I was 2/0 down and I won 3/2. And I
learned a few things from that match. I know how strong he is around the
middle, and on the forehand side, so I tried and take that away from
him. I also tried to be more effective than last time. I have a tendency
to just move my opponents around instead of killing the ball, so today,
I just tried and played with more intend. And that made the difference.
"Today, I got a lesson. I owe him $50."
Nicolas Mueller (Sui) 3-1
Harinder Pal Sandhu (Ind) 11-5, 2-11, 11-4, 11-9 (55m)
What a lovely match that was, how
refreshing, so few decisions, so fast pace, and there is not one spider
web anywhere the four corners really, I can tell you that!!! Itís all
gone, itís all dusted, visited and cleaned!!!!
First game, lovely squash from the Swiss, but in the second, it was like
ďI didnít know how to play squash at allĒ he said at the end. He was
right there. Loose comes to mind, shots in the middle of the court,
soft-ish, completely out of synch bless him. And that was probably a lot
to do with Hariís superbly accurate, fast, inventive and varied squash
Third, pride time for the Swiss, but still, 11 minutes of game for a
11/4, that tells you how hard they still had to workÖ
The fourth, absolutely superb squash from both, intense rallies,
running, hitting, retrieving, not much between them to be honest, 1/1,
2/2, 3/3, 5/5, 6/6, 7/7. Hari seems to find a gap, 9/7, but Nicki
grinding it back with several COME ON in German Ė donít ask me, no idea
how you spell it. At 9/9, a little incident, Hari thinks a ball at the
front is not up, refs undecided, just a little loss of concentration,
and itís over after two great rallies, 11/9Ö Happy the Swiss was.
Hari was disappointed of course, but the work he is doing with Dave
Palmer Ė who was here today and Iím speaking to him tomorrow morning, so
watch this space Ė is working. His game has improved immensely. Itís
just a bit of tuning and fine lines, and maybe just a bit of luck tooÖ
He played well, he played
amazingly well actually.
First of all, let me tell you how HAPPY I am to win an PSA match!!! Itís
my first win since February, and it feels bleeping good, not only to
win, but also to move freely on my two legs, that didnít happen since
In the first I played immaculate squash, but in the second, it was a
combination of him playing superbly, and me just chipping the ball up
and down the court, without any kind of intention or presence! Glad I
had Reiko to help me out, and give me good advice, that was good to have
him in my corner.
The 4th, it just about grinding at the end, and Iím glad I managed to
close a game out finally. Squash hasnít been that fun lately, so Iím
just so glad I won, but he really played amazingÖ
 Miguel Rodriguez (Col)
3-0 [wc] Julian Illingworth (Usa) 11-7, 11-4 , 11-5
Rodriguez ends Julian's home tournament
was semi-retired before this, maybe I'll be fully retired now," quipped
Julian Illingworth after the Seattle-based wildcard had lost out in
three entertaining games to Colombian fifth seed Miguel Rodriguez.
"It was an amazing opportunity to play in a big event like this at
home, especially against someone like Miguel who is a really exciting
player, but he's difficult to play against!"
who had the crowd ooh-ing and aah-ing as he does with some of his
movement and shotmaking, was pleased to be through: "I was in
Colombia yesterday playing in the Nationals, so 'm very happy to win in
three today and I'm looking forward to a rest day before the next round.
Asked about his recent success, Rodriguez pinned it down to
"Persistence, Discipline and Focus. It's been a good year for me, I've
got two tournaments left so I hope I can do well in those and I'd love
to be number one soon."
Tom Richards (Eng) 3-1 [Q]
Laurens Jan Anjema (Ned) 12-10, 3-11, 11-8, 12-10
The court sounded like a firing range
(in stark contrast to Willstrop and Coleman playing next door). Both
were pounding hard length, without a lob in sight for most of the match.
LJ was extremely focused and Tom a quarter-step slow in the second -- it
looked like Anjema might seize control, but the game turned out to be an
anomaly. Richards cut down on his errors, while Anjema found the tin at
a few crucial moments, including a ball he called down on himself at
10-10 in the fourth.
I knew it was going to be
a very tough match. He was probably one of the toughest possible
qualifiers to draw. I have a lot of respect for him.
Weíve had some brutal matches in the past but we havenít played for a
few years and we both know that about each other. We were willing to
match strength against strength, and it really came down to fine
margins. so I just tried to be disciplined and wait for the right
It was mentally quite draining. Physically I feel good but mentally I
had to stay strong in that match. I tried to keep mentally quiet. I
opened up too much in the second, but otherwise I was able to remain
disciplined and wait for opportunities -- even if it didn't always look
My natural game is to open the court up and I knew if I did that Iíd
lose so I knew I had to really work hard to avoid doing that and I feel
quite drained now after.
 Simon Rosner (Ger) 3-0
[Q] Tsz Fung Yip (Hkg) 11-8, 11-8, 11-5 (35m)
Rosner relaxes in the end
German sixth seed Simon Rosner got his World Champs campaign off to a
solid start with a straight-games win over qualifier Tsz Fung Yip. The
Hong Kong's Tsz Fun Yip found Rosner's power a little too much to cope
with, although it wasn't until the latter stages of the first two games
that the big German managed to pull clear.
"I was a bit edgy at the start, having not played him before so I
didn't know what to expect," said Rosner, "but I started to feel more
and more comfortable as the match went on."
The third game, with Rosner in control from the start, backed up that
view of proceedings.
James Willstrop (Eng) 3-0
[Q] Ben Colman (Eng) 11-9, 11-3, 11-6 (38m)
CAT AND MOUSE
Not sure Ben will like to be compare to a mouse, bless me, I could be in
trouble here, but James played a superb match today, controlling his
squash like very few people know how.
First game was pretty close, truly, and Ben moved extremely fast and
well, retrieving everything that James was throwing at him, and thatís a
lot. Hard work, truly hard work for Ben. Very few errors from either of
them, and close all the way, it was great squash although Ben made sure
the centre ref was aware he was not happy with most of his decisionsÖ At
9/9, itís anybodyís game, a superb rally, full blast, extremely fast
pace, but itís two winners for the former world number 1, a straight
kill and a backhand drop shot, 11/9
The third is a James masterclass. After a few errors from Gentleman
James, we are at 3/3. A massive, absolutely massive rally, where Ben
gives everything he has, and borrows the rest, to finally finish on the
left side, on the floor, absolutely vanquished. Mentally, physically,
James managed somehow to break the young talented and spirited contender
who wonít score another point in the game, paying the enormous work he
had to produce in the first gameÖ
The third is closer, and all credit to Ben, he comes back from 3/1 down,
3/3, 4/4. But the Cat & Mouse game continues from Jamesís racquet, and
Ben just cannot put enough pressure on his opponent to prevent him from
adjusting his winners both at the front and at the back. 11/6, in 38m.
Stunning performance from James against a very dangerous player indeed.
Itís good to put together
good spells. Itís good to dominate any player, it doesnít happen often,
itís difficult to put 6, 7 points together, and when it happens like it
happened from 3/3 in the 2nd game, itís some positive when you can
produce something like that.
I cannot allow myself to be complaisant nowadays, Iím not the player I
was at the moment, and I have to produce a lot of work to get back where
I was, I have done that a few times recently, and I just cannot do that.
So I know that I can lose to any player on PSL, at home, it can happen,
and at fortiori here where the level of the player is so strong. And I
think itís healthy to know that you can lose to anybody on your dayÖ
Fares Dessouki (Egy) 3-0
Nasir Iqbal (Pak) 11-7, 11-3, 11-7 (27m)
WHEN THE PARIS EVENTS HIT SEATTLE
Basically, poor Nasir couldnít really compete today. He arrived at 3.30,
his 12.00 match having been postpones until 4. Went on court, did his
best, butÖ what do you expect when you spent two days and a half
travelling and no sleep, and no luggageÖ
I was stuck in Paris, my
flight got cancelled. I left Pakistan on the 13th in the morning, and I
only arrive an hour ago, with no bag, my bag is still in Paris, I had to
borrow shoes, racquet and clothes.
I did my best, but I didnít manage to sleep for two nights and didnít
eat any kind of healthy food, so against Fares, it was just not good
[Q] Todd Harrity (Usa) 3-2
Alan Clyne (Sco) 11-8, 2-11, 11-6, 6-11, 11-3 (63m)
Todd keeps U.S. flag flying
It felt like this was Harrity's match to win or lose. You knew what you
were getting with Clyne: a lot of consistent, conservative length. He
was conservative at the front of the court too, feathering drops three
or four inches above the tin and challenging Harrity to do something
with them. More often than not he was up to the challenge.
He won a brutal rally at 4-4 in the third that was decisive in his
winning that game, and he then jumped out to a lead in the fourth, but
Clyne reeled him in. In the fifth Harrity built another early lead, but
this time he was able to maintain it, winning a pair of tense drop
exchanges at the end to take the match.
played a few times and Iíve never beaten him. Close match but I think
the pressure was on him and he was feeling it and I was happy I managed
to stay relaxed at the key stages
I was taking it one match at a time and I was happy to get through
qualifying. There was no expectation on me and I felt relaxed and free
and I was pleased with how I played with staying in rallies and not
trying to go for shots to easy.
Weíve not had a top US player or a big force on tour so Iím just
plugging away and trying to improve all the time and hopefully that
person can be me.
I really wanted just to stay close to him, and I felt like when things
were close he was tight and I was loose. He puts on a lot of pressure at
the back of the court. He's so strong, it's like playing a machine. I
knew I wasn't going to beat him physically. I had to win by being
This is my biggest win so far. It feels great.
 Saurav Ghosal (Ind)
3-1 Ryan Cuskelly (Aus) 7-11, 11-8, 11-7 , 11-3 (62m)
Saurav Tames RyanÖ
very good crowd today for the first day on the glass court, and a big
support from the Indian I have to say. And they were truly pleased with
their championís performance today. Ryan WR 20, his best ever ranking,
had a superb first game, nickrolled a few to be fair, but from that
point on, Saurav, WR 17, seemed to find a way to grind the Australianís
managed to play as he said himself following ďthe James Willstrop School
of ThoughtsĒ which is as I explained earlier, you transform your
opponent in a mouse, and you stroll him around the four corners. You
have got to be ready to run a heck of a lot to do so, but if you manage,
you are getting the dividends at the end of the match.
And thatís exactly what happened. I feel that the last two weeks maybe
finally took their toll on Ryanís leg in that 4th, he just kept going on
fumes, up to the last points and truly deserves the applauds he got at
the end. But today was Sauravís day.
just had two unbelievable weeks, winning a 35K in Halifax, then reaching
the semis in Qatar, he is playing incredibly well, he is full of
confidence, and it showed in the first game. Iím sure the crowd enjoyed
it, I certainly did notÖ
But I stuck to what I wanted to do Ė he is so skilful with a racquet in
particular in the mid section of the court, so I just kept sending him
to the four corners Ė and worked the ball to the front and to the back.
I had to play extremely well today to beat him, and as he is playing top
10 I feel at the moment, I take a lot of satisfaction from that victory
is one of the toughest first round I could have had, I guess Ramy/Mazen
is very hard as well, for both of them. But itís out of our control, so
we just try and keep our head down, and just deal with the cards we are
given on the day.
We sometimes donít appreciate enough how great it is to have the support
of people, and of course squash is our livelihood, itís money, but there
is nothing more rewarding than playing in front of a loving crowd, for
people that can identify with you in a way. Itís a big privilege we
sometimes take for granted, itís very humbling, and I hope I can feel
and live for a few more years to come.
 Max Lee (Hkg) 3-0
Greg Lobban (Sco) 11-7, 11-8, 11-5 (50m)
have played three tournaments in a row first round, US, Qatar and here;
First time, he beat me 3/2, in Qatar, it was very important I won, that
gave me a lot of confidence.
My country is a very small country, and I am very proud to represent it
here in one of the major tournaments of the Tour. They are a lot of kids
coming up at the moment, and hopefully, thanks to players like Leo, Yip
and myself, they have a target. I remember that when I was young, I used
to look at the players who came to play the Hong Kong Open, and I was
there, laying on the floor, and watching them play, hoping one day to be
one of them.
is a bit of Jetlagg from HK, 6pm itís 10am, itís ok, Iím used to train
at that time, so my body is ok. In the third, I got a bit distracted,
there were a lot of stoppages, lets, cleaning the court, video reviews,
I lost a bit of focus..
He is so strong, he picks up everything and his backhand counter drop is
just very good. Overall, Iím happy with my game, I kept my length Ė that
the one thing I focus on, I cannot think about 5 or 6 things at the same
I trained hard all summer, Iím really happy with the way I played I just
hope I can keep playing well for the rest of this tournament which is
one of my most important goals this year.
 Mathieu Castagnet
(Fra) 3-0 [Q] Peter Creed (Wal) 11-3, 11-5, 11-3 (32m)
just enjoy watching Peter Creed so much. He is full of energy, full of
life, such a fair player and fun to watch. He moves fast, he moves well,
and finds some great angles/dives.
But today, on the glasscourt, he was not as comfortable he can be on a
traditional court. He was as fast as he normally is, but just a bit too
late on the ball to be able to put Mathieu under pressure on a
consistent basis. Still, he did at times, and that offered us some
lovely rallies indeed!
Itís typically that kind of match where the score doesnít tell the whole
story, just the 11/3 games were 8m, that means they had to produce some
work out thereÖ
A fair battle, Mathieu managing to overpower the MiniWelshRunner,
holding the ball well, and putting a lot of power in his crosscourtsÖ
really happy to take that match, there is a bit of a time difference in
France, 8 hours, so back home itís now 5am, and itís important to
prepare the body and manage the preparation well.
He is such a good player, but he is maybe not that used to play on the
glass court, or on such a event, in such a setting, with a big crowd. I
wasnít a good player on the glass court, I have learned to get used to
it. So maybe he lacked a bit of accuracy at time, that really helped me
control the rallies.
I have only be top 10 for three months, and that was big for me I was
not expecting or expected to reach such a target and now that Iím there,
you have all those hungry young players that want to push me out of the
top 10. But Iím here to stayÖ.
me on this one will take some work because Iím going to fight with
everything I have. I am beyond sadness, I have a broken heart, all the
sadness in the world for what just happened in my country.
I am so privileged, I am aware of it, I have a nice life, a nice job, my
girlfriend Iím really happy with and close to, and there are so many
people that are in extreme distress at the moment. I am here to
represent my country the best I can, thatís all I can do, but thatís
something I can do.
 Mohamed Elshorbagy
(Egy) v Alfredo Avila (Mex) 11-4, 11-9, 11-7 (31m)
is the second time I played Mohamed, the first time was in Mexico last
year, and he beat me like today, 3/0. But Iím really happy with the way
I played today, I have been working on changing my game, because I was
just playing loooong games, and I didnít like that.
So I am now playing a much more aggressive squash, I attack more. OK,
maybe it was a bit too hard to do that against him, I lacked patience at
times, I attacked too much, and the wrong shot. But Iím still happy with
the way I played, and he played great squash!
know, itís true I have lost two world champs finals, and it was
heartbreaking for me. Yes, losing last year was tough but everything has
made me the player I am today. I struggled a little bit after last year
but I was able to come back with a Tournament of Champions win and the
British Open. It was a test of character and to get back here the year
after is tough and there are bad memories but Iím trying to put that
behind me now and hopefully I will be able to play well this week.
I have won pretty much everything and I have only this one left to win,
and Iím only 24-years-old so itís not too bad!!! If I donít get it this
year I still have so many years to come but of course I really want to
win this oneÖ.
the first time ever that the World Championship is in the United States.
Itís great, the tournament has been set up perfectly for the players and
Iím really looking forward to playing well here this week in Seattle for
Winning in Qatar last week was a confidence boost. I felt great today. I
thought Alfredo played very well and we kept pushing each other hard. It
was a good first round, itís good to have a rest day tomorrow and get
ready for another late match the day after.
first time I ever went to the World Championship was in 2006, Shabana
was World No.1 and I was just 15-years-old. He has always been a hero
for everyone. I remember when I was 17, just before the World Juniors I
went to Cairo to train there and he has given me so much advice. Iím
very glad to have him here in Seattle and hopefully he will be a great
help this week.
Of course it is an advantage having Shabana in my corner. He has so much
experience, although he doesnít have much experience of losing finals at
the World Champs!!!! He played four World finals and lost only one game
in those finals so itís not too badÖ