Reda Rallies to St. Louis Success

Tournament director Mike Puertas with Reda.
Tournament director Mike Puertas with Reda.

Report courtesy of the Professional Squash Association

Second-seeded Egyptian Mohd Ali Anwar Reda survived the longest match of his ten-year career when he fought off favorite Martin Knight to win the RC Pro Series 2014 in a 125-minute final.

The thirty-year-old from Cairo, who recently became the teaching pro at the Merion Cricket Club in Philadelphia, reached the final of the PSA Challenger 10 squash event at The Racquet Club in St. Louis, Missouri, after overcoming Shawn Delierre, the No. 3 seed from Canada, in an eighty-two-minute semi.

But Knight, the World No. 45 from New Zealand, was extended to the longest match of his career in the other semi when he saw off fourth-seeded Irishman Arthur Gaskin in a 118-minute marathon to reach his fourth PSA World Tour final of the year.

But within twenty-four hours, the Kiwi’s record was broken when he was kept on court for over two hours as he battled to contain his lower-ranked opponent!

“In game one, Reda was making a concerted effort to move Knight after Knight’s marathon two-hour match last night,” explained the club’s Athletic Director and Head Pro Michael Puertas. “The tactic initially backfired with Knight taking a 5-2 lead. Three unforced errors from Knight brought Reda back in the game and the movement and control of Reda’s shots start paying off. Reda took the first game 11-8.

“It was neck and neck in game two all the way to 8-8. Reda’s errors are starting to make the difference as Knight takes the second game 11-8.

“Some great squash by both players in game three as they exchanged points evenly to 8-all, holding at 8-8 for over 10 minutes!! Reda pushes ahead, taking the game with some stunning shot-making.

“Reda breaks a string at 7-6 and asks Knight if he has a spare racquet! A subsequent search of lockers does not locate a matching racquet for Reda so Reda takes Knight’s racquet and continues the game. Knight closes out the game 11-8.

“After a change of racquet for Reda, the members found a somewhat matching racquet belonging to a 10-year-old!! Reda found his mojo and took the final game 11-5. The total match time was 125 minutes!!”

The 11-8, 8-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-5 triumph gives Reda the 12th Tour title of his career – but his first since July 2011.

[2] Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY) bt [1] Martin Knight (NZL) 11-8, 8-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-5 (125m)