Al-Tamimi Advances In Egyptian Open| MENAFN.COM

Friday, 07 October 2022 08:25 GMT

Al-Tamimi Advances In Egyptian Open


(MENAFN- Gulf Times)

Qatar No.1 Abdulla al-Tamimi survived a fightback from Switzerland's Dimitri Steinmann to enter pre-quarter-finals of the Egyptian Open Squash tournament in Cairo, yesterday.
The 27-year-old Qatari won 3-2 (11-6, 11-8, 11-13, 7-11, 11-9) after an exciting 69 minutes match. Al-Tamimi looked set to go through when he took the first two games, only for Steinmann to peg him back to 2-2. Al-Tamimi, however, was able to regroup and took the match courtesy of an 11-9 win in the fifth.
“I train with Dimitri all the time, he knows my game, and I know his. It was a fair and clean match. When I was 10-3 up in the fifth… I felt like I was a ghost on the court. I was passive, waiting for his mistakes, instead of keeping doing what I was doing, and hitting winners. It's another match to learn from. I'm happy to get through,” al-Tamimi said.
“I started very well the first two games, got my tactics right, then I had a drop off in my body language, I wasn't even tired, I was just on the court, returning the serve, that's it, without thinking. He got up to 8-1, then I got back to 8-8, then I went back to being silly again. He kept picking a lot of balls up, he was unbelievable.”
Germany No.1 Raphael Kandra and Egypt's Tarek Momen will join al-Tamimi in the next round.
Kandra edged his way past former World No. 3 Omar Mosaad 3-2 (8-11, 11-5, 13-11, 7-11, 11-4), while Momen beat Egyptian compatriot Youssef Soliman 3-1 (12-14, 11-4, 11-3, 14-12)
An entertaining match-up went the distance and, despite Mosaad taking a 1-0 lead after winning game one 11-8, Kandra clinched the second and third games to go 2-1 up.
But Mosaad forced a decisive fifth game when he claimed the fourth 11-7, but it was Kandra, in his first appearance of the tournament, who prevailed in the fifth 11-4. The 31-year-old will meet either World No.1 Ali Farag or Mazen Gamal in the next round.
“It was a tough encounter against Mosaad. I found it hard to know which game plan I should go with because he's so tall and strong at the T line,” said Kandra.
“Sometimes it works, sometimes it didn't, but overall I'm glad I got through and now I'm getting ready to go on the glass court tomorrow. This was a good fight for me, overall there were a lot of ups and downs. Of course it's always easier to go through in three games, but it can also go the other way. When it was 1-1 it was a very important third game, I managed to win, but in the fourth he was a bit smarter towards the end.
“In the fifth I stuck to my game plan a bit more. It could have been easier but a win's a win and that's important for me,” the German said.
Soliman, winner of the CIB Zed Open last month, made a good start to the match as he looked to end a four-match losing run against the No. 6 seed, with the World No.13 eventually edging a 20-minute first game 14-12 after seeing four game balls slip at 10-6.
Momen responded brilliantly, though, speeding into the lead with lightning-fast 11-4, 11-3 wins. In a tight fourth game, both players had game ball opportunities, with the experienced Momen being the one to hold his nerve as he brought the match to a close with a 14-12 victory.
“I'm very happy to go through today. Youssef is a tough opponent and is playing really well these days. He just won his biggest title (CIB Zed Open), beating an in-form player like Victor Crouin, so I knew I had a tough one today. In the first game, I started well but he managed to come back and build a huge lead and 10-6 up. Again, I managed to come back, only to lose it 14-12 which was a bit of a bummer! But I knew I had to regroup and I'm very glad that I kept pushing and converted that deficit into a win,” Momen said.

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