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Joelle King

CIB Black Ball Open SFs: Preview & How to Watch Live

We have reached the semi-final stage of the CIB Black Ball Open PSA World Tour Gold event taking place in Cairo, Egypt this week.

Four nationalities will be represented in the last four with England's Sarah-Jane Perry, New Zealand's Joelle King, USA's Amanda Sobhy and Egypt's Hania El Hammamy making up the semi-finalists.

You can catch all the action live from the Black Ball Sporting Club on SquashTV and the official Facebook page of the PSA World Tour (Indian sub-continent only).

You can also keep up with the live scores from the event here.

Here's the Order of Play
(All times are local – GMT+2)

Sarah-Jane Perry v Joelle King

Kicking off the day’s action is England’s Perry against New Zealand’s King. You can see their head-to-head record below.

Both players enjoyed huge upsets in the last round with King taking out World No.2 Nouran Gohar in straight-games before Perry came from a game down against France's World No.4 Camille Serme to book her place in the semi-finals.

The two players are both looking to reach their first final of the season. Perry made it to the same stage of this event in March before she was halted by eventual champion El Hammamy. King, on the other hand, suffered a shock defeat in round two to bring her tournament to an early end.

They have faced each other nine times in total previously on the Tour, with King holding the advantage with seven wins to Perry's two.

Their last meeting was in the best-of-three format at the CIB PSA World Tour Finals, where King won 2-1. However, their last best-of-five meeting came at the Cleveland Classic at the start of this year where Perry took the win, 3-0.

It's been a strong week in Cairo for both players, with each facing early round five-game battles. Perry was taken to five in round one by Welshwoman Emily Whitlock, whilst at the same stage King had to hold off a comeback from Australia's Donna Lobban.

SquashLevels

King sits just above Perry on the SquashLevels Power Ratings, with the pair occupying the #7 and #8 spots, respectively. The Kiwi has seen her level increase by 7.3% over the course of the event, with the majority of that improvement coming from her straight games victory over World No.2 Nouran Gohar.

Perry has also seen her level improve, with the Englishwoman seeing an increase of 4.1% across the tournament. She is the lowest rated player on the SquashLevels Power Ratings of the four that remain in the tournament, with the algorithm suggesting the* World No.6 has a 42% chance of victory over her opponent.

Who do you think will make the final?

Amanda Sobhy v Hania El Hammamy

The other semi-final sees USA’s Sobhy take on reigning champion El Hammamy.

Check out their head-to-head record below.

Can Sobhy continue her disruption of the Egyptian charge or will El Hammamy be back to defend her title in the final?

Last night saw Sobhy claim the shock of the tournament and also one of the biggest wins of her career as she defeated World No.1 and four-time World Champion, Nour El Sherbini, in a five-game thriller.

Going into the match Sobhy had only taken three victories over the Egyptian with her last win coming in 2016 – but the American played with bravery to convert this time around and book her place in the last four of the PSA World Tour Gold event.

El Hammamy, on the other hand, looked solid as she came from a game down against Wales' World No.9 Tesni Evans to continue her title defence.

In fact the last time these two players met in a best-of-five format was at this event when it was a Platinum tier event in March. El Hammamy reigned victorious in four-games as she went on to lift the title in one of the most memorable moment of the 2019-20 season.

Sobhy will be hoping to avoid a repeat this time around and the head-to-head record between the pair shows it will be a close one with each player holding two victories.

They have faced each other three times alone this year, with Sobhy taking the first victory at the Bahl and Gaynor Cincinnati Gaynor Cup and El Hammamy taking the last two at the Black Ball Open and CIB PSA World Tour Finals. Strangely enough in all of those tournaments either Sobhy or El Hammamy has gone on to win the title.

SquashLevels

After two comfortable 3-0 wins and then a 3-2 victory over the World No.1, Amanda Sobhy has risen the SquashLevels Power Ratings and is now inside the top three. Her level has improved by over 13% and she is expected to defeat the defending champion, according to the SquashLevels algorithm.

Due to Sobhy’s rise, El Hammamy is now the #4 on the SquashLevels Power Ratings. The 20-year-old, who won this title in March, has actually seen her level decrease by 2%, and she is expected to lose 3-2 to the American.

But who do you think will make the final in Cairo? It’s all heating up at the Black Ball Sporting Club!

Join us at 19:00 local time (GMT+2) to find out…