Tuesday 22 April 2008

Omneya's turn in Egyptian spotlight

Omneya Abdel KawyAs if the marauding Egyptian dominance of the men's tour wasn't enough to worry other squash playing nations, now the women are getting in on the act.

Omneya Abdel Kawy has just won the Hurghada International in Cairo - her second victory in the event, but one made all the more significant by a victory en-route ...

The 23 year-old from Cairo defeated top seed Rachael Grinham over 5 games in the semis (only her second win over the Australian - her first being in the same event in 2006), and took the title with a 9/1, 9/4, 9/2 win over England's Jenny Duncalf in the final.

The parallel men's final was an all-too predictable affair, with home-spun rivals Amr Shabana and Ramy Ashour again facing one another, in thriller that Ashour took 12/10 in the fifth.

The women's champion's summary of the event upon defeating Duncalf gave a flavour of Egypt's reverance for their squash champions:

"It was so nice to hear the people chanting my name! ... It's such a nice feel to feel that people love you, and they support you, and they take your picture, and ask for autographs ... It's great!"

Wouldn't it be nice to hear a player say that after squash tournaments in other countries ?!

Next stop for the men is the $200,000 Kuwait Open - there won't be many who'd bet against an Egyptian taking the largest share of one of the biggest prize purses on the PSA tour.

Hurghada International 2008

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