The semi-finals of the CIB PSA World Tour Finals take place today, with action beginning at 19:00 (GMT+2) at the Mall of Arabia in Cairo as the last four players on both sides of the tournament aim to reach the final of the season-ending competition.
It will be the top four ranked women in action this evening in Cairo, with World No.1 Nouran Gohar taking on Hania El Hammamy in a repeat of the El Gouna International final from just a few weeks ago. The second women’s match will see Nour El Sherbini take on US No.1 Amanda Sobhy for a place in the final.
The first men’s match of the night will see World No.1 Ali Farag take on World No.4 and offending champion Mostafa Asal, before New Zealand’s Paul Coll takes on England’s Mohamed ElShorbagy in the last match of the evening.
You can watch all the action live on SQUASHTV.
Order of Play
(All times are local – GMT+2)
Nouran Gohar v Hania El Hammamy
The opening match of the evening’s action at the Mall of Arabia will see the last two women’s winners of this tournament go head-to-head. Defending champion Nouran Gohar will take on 2020 victor Hania El Hammamy for a place in Sunday’s finals.
This will be the twelfth meeting between the pair, and the ninth in the last twelve months. Gohar holds an 8-3 advantage over her fellow Egyptian, and she defeated El Hammamy in the final of the CIB PSA World Tour Finals last year, but the World No.3 has won both of the last two meetings, and both in finals, as she claimed the Allam British Open and El Gouna International crowns.
With the unique format of this tournament, both women have played three matches so far, but El Hammamy has only won two of those. She defeated Rowan Elaraby and Sarah-Jane Perry to book her semi-final spot, before losing to Nour El Sherbini in her final pool match.
Meanwhile, Nouran Gohar won all three of her pool matches and has been on court for less than an hour, as she defeated USA’s Amanda Sobhy and England’s Georgina Kennedy both in 19 minutes, along with a 20-minute victory over New Zealand’s Joelle King, all of those coming in straight games.
Thanks to her incredible 2021-2022 campaign, Gohar sits atop the SquashLevels Power Ratings, with El Hammamy at the #3 position. Their algorithms suggest a 79% win likelihood for ‘the Terminator’.
Can Gohar continue the defence of her CIB PSA World Tour Finals crown? Or can the El Hammamy secure a third consecutive win over the World No.1?
Ali Farag v Mostafa Asal
The first men’s match of the evening will see World No.1 Ali Farag take on the defending CIB PSA World Tour Finals champion Mostafa Asal for a place in the finals in Cairo.
The pair have done battle 13 times before, with Farag holding a commanding 11-2 advantage in the duel. However, Asal won their pool match at this tournament last season, along with beating the World No.1 in their last meeting, the semi-finals of the El Gouna International earlier this month.
After losing all three matches at this event last year, Farag has been in much better form this time round, winning all three of his Group A matches to advance to the last four. He defeated Peru’s Diego Elias and Egypt’s Mazen Hesham in three-game battles, before overcoming England’s Mohamed ElShorbagy in his last match of the pool to claim top spot.
Meanwhile, Mostafa Asal won two of his pool matches, with those coming against Welshman Joel Makin and 2019 World Champion Tarek Momen to book his place in the semi-finals. With that place already secured, the ‘Raging Bull’ then lost out to New Zealand’s Paul Coll in his final pool match.
The pair sit inside the top three on the SquashLevels Power Ratings, with Farag at #1 and Asal at #3 but there is not much between them. The algorithm predicts a 2-1 victory for the World No.1, but it will be a close battle.
Can Farag make his way into the final of the CIB PSA World Tour Finals? Or can Asal score another win over Farag and keep his title defence alive?
Nour El Sherbini v Amanda Sobhy
The second women’s semi-final will pit six-time World Champion Nour El Sherbini and US No.1 Amanda Sobhy against each other for a place in the finals in Cairo.
This will be the 14th battle between the pair on Tour, with the Egyptian having won nine of their previous meetings. She has also won the last three battles, but this will be their first match-up in the 2021-2022 campaign. It will also be their first match in the best-of-three format.
El Sherbini came through Group B with a perfect record, taking victory in all three matches. She started with strong performances against England’s Sarah-Jane Perry and compatriot Rowan Elaraby, before having to fight her way through a tough 50-minute battle with World No.3 Hania El Hammamy, eventually winning 11-9 in the third.
Meanwhile, Sobhy has spent just over an hour on court. After losing in straight games to World No.1 Nouran Gohar in her opening match, the American bounced back to record big wins over New Zealand’s Joelle King and England’s Georgina Kennedy, both in straight games, to advance to the semis.
El Sherbini currently sits at the #2 spot on the SquashLevels Power Ratings, with Sobhy at the #5 position. The algorithm predicts a close battle between the pair, with the Egyptian coming out on top.
Can El Sherbini make it 12 wins over the American and move through to the final? Or can Sobhy disrupt the Egyptian dominance of this event in recent years?
Paul Coll v Mohamed ElShorbagy
The last match of the evening will see New Zealand’s Paul Coll take on England’s Mohamed ElShorbagy for a place in the finals of the CIB PSA World Tour Finals, in what is their 15th meeting on Tour.
‘The Beast’ has won ten of their previous 14 matches, but Coll has won three of the last four. That run includes a 2-1 victory at the Oracle NetSuite Open, also in the best-of-three format, but ElShorbagy defeated the Kiwi at this very stage of the tis event twelve months ago.
In true Paul Coll fashion, he started the tournament with a big battle, losing out to 2019 World Champion Tarek Momen in a tight third game after just under an hour on court. However, he bounced back to record straight games wins Welshman Joel Makin and Egypt’s Mostafa Asal to make the last four.
ElShorbagy went the other way, as he won his first two matches of the competition, defeating Mazen Hesham in three, before then beating Diego Elias in straight games to book his place in the semis. He then lost out to Ali Farag in the last pool match, with his place already assured.
The pair are separated by three places on the SquashLevels Power Ratings, with Coll at #2 and ElShorbagy at #5, but the algorithm predicts a tight three-game battle between the pair.
Can Coll reach another final in Egypt? Or can ElShorbagy defeat the Kiwi in the semis of this tournament for a second year in succession?