Tandon Wins First PSA Title on Long Island

Ramit Tandon (l) and promoter Mohamed Nabil.

Former Columbia No. 1 Ramit Tandon won his first PSA title against fellow Indian Kush Kumar in the final of the $5,000 SYS Open Sunday, May 14, at Southampton Youth Services on Long Island, New York.

The main draw included a raft of first round upsets that included all four qualifiers advancing to the quarterfinals. Former U.S. world juniors teammates Timmy Brownell and Spencer Lovejoy both recorded their first PSA main draw victories in the first round. Lovejoy upset seven seed Joshua Hollings in four games, before falling short in the fifth game against Trinity No. 1 Kush Kumar in the quarterfinals.

Brownell made a surprise run to the semifinals beginning with a three-game first-round upset over five seed Stu Hadden, and a five-game win over qualifier Mohammed Nabil in the quarterfinals. Kumar then dispatched Brownell 11-7 in the fifth in the semifinals.

After winning two qualifying matches, Tandon progressed through the draw without dropping a game, including in the semifinals against two seed Clinton Leeuw. In the final, Tandon defeated his compatriot 11-3, 11-2, 11-3 in thirty-one minutes.

View all results here.

Egyptian Teenager Elaraby Wins Richmond and Charlottesville Titles Across Two Weeks

Rowan UCA crop article
Rowan Elaraby

Sixteen-year-old Egyptian Rowan Elaraby claimed two women’s U.S. Pro Series titles in just as many weeks this month in Virginia—the $5,000 Richmond Open, April 15, and $10,000 Sentara Martha Jefferson Charlottesville Open, April 23.

In Richmond, April 13-15, Rowan entered the Richmond Open as the two seed and didn’t drop a game on the way to her third career PSA Tour title, including a final upset over Canadian top seed Nicole Bunyan.

This weekend, Elaraby entered the Charlottesville Open as the eight seed and opened her tournament with a three-game win in the first round. The world No. 69 then defeated the tournament’s top three seeds to claim the title, three seed Vanessa Chu in the quarterfinals, one seed Ho Tze-Lok in the semifinals, and two seed Danielle Letourneau in the final 7-11, 11-6, 7-11, 11-6, 11-9 in fifty-two minutes.

Elaraby, Egypt’s top-ranked U17 player, has now already competed in five U.S. pro series events in 2017.

Mexican Teenager Camacho Wins Largest Title in Madison

Jesus Camacho (r) against Piedro Schweertman in the Madison Open final. (image: Tom Mcinvaille)
Jesus Camacho (r) against Piedro Schweertman in the Madison Open final. (image: Tom Mcinvaille)

Mexican nineteen-year-old Jesus Camacho upset the top three seeds on his way to winning the largest title of his career—the $10,000 Madison Open—this weekend at Madison Squash Workshop in Wisconsin.

Camacho first upset England’s five seed Chris Fuller in a four-game, first-round match, before taking out Seattle-based three seed Shahjahan Khan in a three-game quarterfinal.

The Cuautitlan Izcalli-native pulled off two major upsets in the final two rounds of the tournament. First, a three-game upset over two seed and U.S. champion Chris Hanson to reach Sunday’s final. In the final, Camacho held off a two-game comeback from top seed Piedro Schweertman to win the title 13-11 in the fifth game.

The Madison Open marks Camacho’s second career PSA Tour title in addition to the $5,000 2016 British Virgin Islands Open, and first U.S. Pro Series title.

Gawad Wins Hutkay.fit Houston Open

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l-r: Karim Abdel Gawad, Andre Maur, Tarek Momen

Egpyt’s soon-to-be world No. 1, Karim Abdel Gawad, won his second PSA Tour title on U.S. soil this season, the $70,000 Life Time Hutkay.fit Houston Open at Life Time Athletic in Texas.

The men’s world champion progressed through the draw with four, four-game wins. The draw saw four Egyptians advance to the semifinals including Gawad, four seed Fares Dessouki, three seed Tarek Momen and eight seed Mohamed Abouelghar.

Gawad defeated Momen in Sunday’s fifty-nine-minute final 11-6, 5-11, 11-6. The tile marks Gawad’s second on U.S. soil this season in addition to the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions in January, and fifth of the season on the PSA Tour.

“I’m really happy to be playing this well since August,” Gawad told tournament director Andre Maur. “It’s important for me to keep winning and playing my best squash as much as I can. It’s really tough to do, but it’s part of our game and we all have to do it. I won here in January, and of course this tournament so I love playing on this court in Houston. Thanks to all of the sponsors and organizers for putting on this great event. Looking forward to coming back next year.”

Gawad is set to take over the world No. 1 ranking in May, which will mark the twenty-five-year-old’s first time ascending to the world’s top ranking.

Hanson Seeded Second in Madison Open

Chris Hanson in the 2017 S.L. Green U.S. men's championship.
Chris Hanson in the 2017 S.L. Green U.S. men’s championship.

S.L. Green U.S. men’s champion Chris Hanson enters the $10,000 Madison Open as the two seed this weekend at Madison Squash Workshop in Wisconsin.

The twenty-six year old is making his second PSA appearance since claiming his first national title last month. Hanson, world No. 92, is predicted to face fellow American Faraz Khan, the seven seed, in the second round Friday, April 21, and Seattle-based Pakistani Shajahan Khan in the semifinals Saturday, April 22.

If the draw plays out according to seeding, Hanson will meet Dutch world No. 72 Piedro Schweertman in Sunday’s final.

Last month one week after the S.L. Green, Schweertman defeated Hanson in a five-game, first-round match at the $15,000 Manitoba Open.

The Madison Open is live streaming and scoring all weekend on www.usprosquashseries.com/live. First round matches begin Thursday, April 20, at 5:30pm local time, 6:30pm ET.

World Champion Gawad Heads 70k Houston Open Draw

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Karim Abdel Gawad (r) against Fares Dessouki in the El Gouna Open. (image: squashpics.com)

Egypt’s world No. 2 Karim Abdel Gawad is the title favorite for the revamped Life Time Hutkay.fit Houston Open this weekend at Life Time Athletic in Texas.

For the first time in tournament history, the draw has elevated prize money of $70,000 on offer—the highest prize money for a PSA event ever held in Texas.

England’s former world No. 1 and current world No. 7 James Willstrop weighs in as the two seed, while Egypt’s world No. 11 Tarek Momen and world No. 9 enter as the three and four seeds, respectively.

Follow live scores from Houston, April 20-23, on www.usprosquashseries.com/live.

Serme Retains Cleveland Classic Title in Five-Game Final

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Serme (r) and Waters. (image: Andrea Dawson)

Report courtesy of PSA

French world No. 2 Camille Serme continued her unbeaten start to 2017 after she mounted a superb comeback from two games down to retain her Cleveland Classic title at the expense of England’s former world No. 3 Alison Waters in Pepper Pike, Ohio.

Serme, the twenty-seven-year-old from Créteil, has been in scintillating form over the past few months, with victories at the Delaware Investments U.S. Open and J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions cementing her status as the form player on the Women’s Tour.

Serme surged through to the final without dropping a solitary game, with Egyptian qualifier Nadine Shahin, number eight seed Tesni Evans and World No.8 Sarah-Jane Perry all falling by the wayside as the rampant Frenchwoman went on to set up a repeat of the 2016 final with Waters, who was the only player to have beaten Serme in the latter’s 16 previous matches coming into the final.

Waters looked to be set to get the better of her opponent once more after going two games ahead courtesy of some disciplined length hitting, putting the current World No.10 on the cusp of a first PSA World Tour title since the 2014 Carol Weymuller Open.

But Serme responded in the third by attacking at the front of the court on the backhand side and, after winning it by an 11-7 margin, she ground out a victory in the fourth to level the scores and set up a dramatic fifth-game showdown.

With the match edging towards its conclusion, both players played an attritional brand of squash with neither competitor giving many loose shots away as they sought to gain the upper hand. But it was Serme who changed up her game intelligently, incorporating the lob to great effect as she closed out a 10-12, 9-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-7 victory to lift her third PSA World Tour title in her last four tournaments.

Serme and Waters will be in action at the upcoming Windy City Open presented by Guggenheim Partners and EquiTrust Life Insurance Company, which will be shown live on SQUASHTV between February 23 – March 1.

Result – Final: 2017 Cleveland Classic
[1] Camille Serme (FRA) bt [2] Alison Waters (ENG) 3-2: 10-12, 9-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-7

Serme Seeded to Retain Cleveland Classic Title

Serme (l) against Waters in the 2016 final. (image: Andrea Dawson)
Serme (l) against Waters in the 2016 final. (image: Andrea Dawson)

France’s world No. 2 Camille Serme leads the $50,000 Tub O’ Towels & Chemical Bank Cleveland Classic draw as the top seed this weekend, and is predicted to face England’s Alison Waters in what would be a rematch of the 2016 final at the Cleveland Racquet Club in Ohio.

The first round of qualifying took place Wednesday evening with the qualifying finals set to complete the main draw Thursday from 5pm local time.

World No. 26 Olivia Blatchford is the sole Team USA representation in the main draw and will face Waters in the first round.

England’s world No. 8 Sarah-Jane Perry occupies the three seed in the top half of the draw and India’s Joshna Chinappa is the four seed in the bottom half of the draw.

View the full Cleveland Classic draw here.

Watch live streaming from the Cleveland Racquet Club’s show court on the Cleveland Classic live stream.

Cuskelly Dethrones Farag to Win Biggest Career Title in the Motor City

Cuskelly MCO feature

Australian world No. 19 Ryan Cuskelly recorded the biggest result of his career Monday night in Detroit, dethroning $70,000 Motor City Open champion Ali Farag to win his largest career PSA Tour title at Birmingham Athletic Club.

In a tournament full of upsets including ElShorbagy brothers Mohamed and Marwan eliminated by Ceasar Salazar & Diego Elias respectively, the final continued the trend as Farag, world No. 7, fell in four games.

The Greenwich, Connecticut-based Cuskelly marked his ninth Motor City Open appearance, but before this weekend, never made it past the quarterfinals.

“I’m pretty excited to win my biggest title in my favorite tournament on the tour,” Cuskelly said. “I always told the guys here I’d win it someday, but I didn’t expect it to be this year.”

After losing the first game and earning a 2-1 lead, Cuskelly came back from a 9-4 deficit in the fourth game to defeat the Egyptian Harvard graduate.

“He stepped it up,” Farag said. “I couldn’t find the right balance between being aggressive and playing smart. Every time I would try to be aggressive, I would hit the tin. He put too much pressure on me.”

“I was up 4-2 and I thought about the finish line, which is silly,” Cuskelly said. “Next minute I was down 9-4 and I just tried to get back to playing normal squash for the fifth game.”

Cuskelly now holds a 2-1 career lead against Farag, whom he most recently defeated in the 2015 Charlottesville open.

“It’s unbelievable,” Cuskelly said. “I lost in qualification for years, but I did a lot of hard training in December and it paid off.”

For more tournament reports and images, visit www.themotorcityopen.com.

 

Charlton Captures Seventh PSA Tour Title in Delaware

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England international Eddie Charlton claimed the seventh PSA Tour title of his career fulfilling his seeding to win the inaugural $5,000 Delaware Pro Singles at Wilmington Country Club.

Although it is the twenty-eight-year-old’s seventh career title, it is his first since relocating to Chicago and first U.S. Pro Series title.

The Englishman entered the draw as the top seed, brushing off American David Cromwell in the first round and Canadian Cameron Seth in the quarterfinals.

The main draw was shaken up by three qualifiers who pulled off first-round upsets to reach the quarterfinals, including former U.S. men’s national team player Gilly Lane, who took out seven seed Stu Hadden in a three-game, first-round match.

Pakistani qualifier Syed Hamzah Bukhari made an unexptected run to the semifinals, upsetting Team USA’s four seed Faraz Khan in the first round and Bermuda’s Micah Franklin in the quarterfinals before losing out against Charlton in the final.

In an all-English final, Charlton held off two seed Adam Murrills 11-9, 11-5, 4-11, 11-6 in fifty minutes to claim the title.

PSA squash returns to Delaware in two weeks in the form of the $10,000 Corporation Service Company Delaware Women’s Open.

PSA | U.S. Squash