King downs El-Welily, ElShorbagy defeats Ali Farag to win Hong Kong Open title
World No.7 King lifted the first PSA World Tour Platinum trophy of her career after a stellar performance, which saw her defeat World No.2 and 2017 runner-up Raneem El Welily 3-0 [11-4, 12-10, 19-17].
King got off to a strong start by dominating the first two rounds, however, El Welily didn’t go down without a fight.
“I just kept thinking that it’s the last match of the tournament – just leave it all out there,” King revealed.
“Raneem is such a tough competitor and she showed in the third why she is No.1. She just kept coming back at me and never let it go until the end,” she added.
This was not the first time King has defeated reigning World Champion El Welily.
“I guess if you’ve beaten a player before then it gives you a bit of confidence, but every day is a new day and she’s not No.1 for no reason, so I knew she was never going to let it go. I’m just extremely happy to win my first platinum event ever.”
Meanwhile, Egypt’s World No.1 ElShorbagy captured his fourth Hong Kong Open title in five years after dismantling World No.2 Ali Farag 11-6, 11-7, 11-7 in a repeat of last year’s final.
ElShorbagy and Farag had shared the spoils from the first two Platinum events of the season between them, with ElShorbagy winning the October’s U.S. Open and Farag triumphing at the Qatar Classic earlier this month.
Mohamed El Shorbagy claimed the 35th PSA title of his career – a total that sees him move up joint eighth in the all-time PSA title winners list, level with the legendary Nick Matthew.
“I’m really pleased to be able to come here and play my best squash,” said ElShorbagy.
“It’s always great when it all comes together. I’m really proud of my performance but not to take anything away from Ali, I have nothing but respect for him. He came to the tour later than all of us and came up the rankings very fast. Very few people can do what he did and he’s coming after me, but I’m trying to hold him a little bit.
“We’ve played twice already this season, he beat me once and now I’ve beaten him. I’m sure we will have many more battles and compete in more finals.”
The next Platinum tournament will be the CIB Black Ball Squash Open which takes place in Cairo between December 3-9.
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