Jana & El Serty reach 1st final, Hania reaches her 3rd , & Asal yet to drop a game…

BEST OF EGYPTIAN PHOTOS

Semis

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[1] Mostafa Asal 3-0 Lewis Anderson (Eng) 11-5, 11-5, 11-2 (28m)
[3/4] Mostafa El Serty 3-2 [2] Omar El Torkey  11-8, 6-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-7 (63m)
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[1] Hania El Hammamy (Egy) 3-1 [3/4] Farida Mohamed  11-8, 11-6, 4-11, 11-3 (54m)
[2] Jana Shiha  3-2 [3/4] Aifa Azman (Mas) 10-12, 14-12, 2-11, 15-13, 11-7 (64m)

 

 

Jana gets her revenge, Hania drops a game, while we have 2 Mostafa in the final!

What a match, what a performance. Young Jana, who is known for a lack of confidence, but hard working and determined beautiful soul, finally overcame her boogeywoman. Twice she had played the very streetwise Aifa Azman, in the British Junior U13 and U17, losing each time.

Jana lost the first game today, on a tie break, and she knew how crucial it was for her to take the second, and that she did, on her second attempt, again on a tie-break 14/12. The third, the Egyptian didn’t turn up bless her, 5m game for the Malaysian, thanks Aifa said, walking off court leading 2/1 and looking the winner, 11/2.

The fourth is a battle for every single point, with the Malaysian getting three match balls, each time Jana saving the day with guts, to finally clinched that 4th 15/13. Did that affect the Malaysian mentally? I felt a bit of a drop in energy in the 5th for Aifa, the hard work produced by Jana patient lengthy rallies squash probably paid off in that decider.

Knowing Jana, I thought she might start doubting herself if she didn’t take the match on her first match ball, 10/7. She must have felt the same, as she found another forehand killer crosscourt that her opponent couldn’t reach. And Jana reaches her first ever World Junior Final…

“I was so many matchballs down but I managed to find a way to save them and somehow win the fourth game. It gave me a bit more confidence for the fifth game which was tense and I had to stay as calm as I could,” said Jana.

“It feels really amazing to be in the final. Furthermore this is like a double revenge for me, having beaten Marina in the quarter-finals and now Aifa.

“Hopefully I can go on to win tomorrow. It is a pleasure to play in an all-Egyptian final and I’ll definitely do my best.”

Is Hania going to get her World Junior title? Finally? The 18 years old and WR15 – she’ll be 19 in September – is playing her last world junior, was largely the favourite today against WR50 17 years old Farida Mohamed.

Still Farida never stopped trying and when she was down and out 2/0, she raised the pace, hit as hard as her sister Habiba & Nouran Gohar put together, and outpaced Hania who finally showed she is human, dropping her first game of the event!!!

At the start of the 4th, at 1/0, a little accidental stepping on Farida’s foot from Hania stopped the game for a few minutes, but thank Heaven the Alexandria champ came back on court. Some good squash was played but the experience I feel made the difference in that one, and it’s Hania closing the match down, 11/3 in 54m.

Mostafa El-Serty created the upset today it has to be said when he beat the #2 seed Omar El Torkey 11-8, 6-11, 10-12, 11-8, 11-7 in 63m. First game saw a few strange calls from the ref, seemed very harsh against Omar I felt, and led – along with pressure – with a couple of errors at crucial stages of the opener, 11/8 to the underdog.

Omar reacted very well, reassessed to take the next two, but Mostafa seemed to find the squash of his life in the next two, snatching the final away from Omar’s racquet, and it’s 11/8 and 11/7 to the underdog in 63m.

“It was such a hard game today, not only because Omar is higher ranked but also because he is one of my closest friend,” said Moustafa.

“But I’m so happy to have gotten through to my first final. Its really a dream come true. I remembered when I was 9 and I knew I wanted to make the final one day too.

“Last year I only made the semi-finals of the world juniors and I was learning how to be one step better. I still have one more year of world juniors so to reach the final now is really good for me.”

As for Ragging Bull, bless him, not sure any of his matches went over 30m mark…. Today, Giant Killer Lefthander Lewis Anderson hit the Bull wall. Both metaphorically and physically… At some point, Mostafa didn’t exactly let a boulevard for his opponent to go to the ball, and the Englishboy made his opinion apparently clear to Mostafa. A few words were exchanged, nothing bad, but it led to a lovely image at the end of the match, as the English bowed to his opponent, Mostafa took the English arm to get the crowd to salute him.

Awhhhh…..

 

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