Boston’s Amanda Sobhy has become the first US-born player in history to reach the semi-finals of the PSA World Championships presented by the Walter Family following her 3-0 victory over World No.5 Hania El Hammamy under the chandeliers of the University Club of Chicago’s Cathedral Hall earlier today.
The last time the semi-finals of squash’s most prestigious tournament featured a US player was back in 2007 when Natalie Grainger reached the last four, but Sobhy ensured that 14-year wait came to an end with a marvellous 11-3, 11-8, 11-9 victory against an opponent ranked two spots above her on the PSA Women’s World Rankings.
“The crowd kept pushing me,” said Sobhy.
“I tried to stay really focused because she is phenomenal in the big points. I knew she would be really good on those big points, so I had to be better. I tried as much as I could to step up, stay confident, stay aggressive in those points, keep pushing the pace and once I won that final shot, all the emotion came out of me, I am very pleased.
“I’ll make sure that I recover well, eat, hydrate and sleep, and then prepare for my match against [Nour El] Sherbini. We played at the Black Ball Open and this season we are at 1-1. I love the energy here, I love competing and I just don’t want it to end, so I will just keep giving it all I have.”
World No.1 El Sherbini – who will be overtaken as the world’s leading female player by Nouran Gohar if she gets beaten by Sobhy – is through to a sixth successive World Championship semi-final after she beat England No.1 Sarah-Jane Perry 11-6, 12-10, 11-2 in 30 minutes.
El Sherbini – who already has four World Championship titles under her belt at the age of 25 – is now one win away from becoming the first woman to reach six successive World Championship finals. The only other player to achieve that was six-time World Champion Jahangir Khan, who reached six straight finals in the men’s game between 1981-1986.
“For me, this tournament is very important and once I reach the quarters, I tell myself it is a new tournament and to forget the last few rounds, to start fresh again,” El Sherbini said.
Originally Published on: PSA World Tour