Nouran Gohar (Egy) 3-1  Hania El Hammamy (Egy) 11-9, 11-6, 8-11, 11-8 (77m)
Another superb battle in the Women’s game. The level of their fitness is just surreal to be honest. That was nearly 80m game for only 4 games… Think about that.
Superb start from Nouran, exactly like she did the day before against Joelle. Hitting her targets so accurately at the back, her power completely back in action, she just kept hammering the front wall, 4/0, 6/2.
Hania, struggling at the start to absorb such power, managed eventually to get some control back, 7/7, 9/9.But after yet another long rally, a clipping of the tin for Hania, and it’s 11/9 for Nouran, 15m game.
I didn’t record any calls – I could be wrong but I don’t have any in that first game. How refreshing. 4 errors for Nouran, 3 for Hania.
The second is again dominated by the Terminator, hitting still very hard and Hania just playing punching ball for her opponent, working so hard, trying to weather the powerful storm, 2/2, 6/3. Another good effort from the Gazelle, 6/7, but that 4 points in a row for Nouran, 11/6 in 18m.
Hania gave away 4 points (3 errors, 1 stroke). Only 1 error for Nouran.
The longest game of the match is the third, won by Hania.3/1, 3/3, 5/5, 7/7, 8/8. Hania is able to step in front a bit better, Nouran at the back, not hitting as hard, and it’s 11/8 for Hania, 21m game.
I really thought we were going for a decider as Hania seemed still very tired but pushing so hard, clawing back to the score constantly: 2/2, 2/4, 3/6, 6/6, 7/8. A crucial error at that point, Hania maybe a bit negative at the point but so easy to say from behind a screen…
Match ball, 10/7, match 11/8 on two mega mega rallies. Today, I felt that Nouran was stronger physically, and just wouldn’t be denied. But what a battle from Hania. She pushed beyond duty, although we could see she was running on fumes.
Great advert for our sport, truly.
“She is the hungriest player right now on tour. I know how it feels to be her age and beating the top players, so I knew she would be confident on court and I couldn’t take it for granted being 2-0 up. She pulled it back and she was trying to win the match, I’m just pleased with the way I performed. It’s always easier when you have the support, I have all my support here, my coach Omar [Abdel Aziz] and the crowd and Wadi Degla – all the player, juniors and Karim Darwish, it feels like playing at home. I really enjoyed my time on court this week and super happy.
“The ranking is huge. I’ve been there, so no more pressure to get on top and I definitely want to get back. You have to think about the performance first to be able to win the titles and be able to reach the top again. The main point now is to have these performances consistently and then win titles and then get back to the ranking. I just hope I can perform well for the next tournament.”