SF:  Nour El Sherbini (Egy) 3-1  Nour El Tayeb (Egy) 11-6, 11-7, 7-11, 11-8 (53m)
The Battle of Lights – Nour means light in Arabic. I just love the fact you still have people in the crowd that go “go on Nour” or “Yalla Nour”. Blessssss
Those two just played a few days ago in the semis of the CIBFinals, and in best of three, El Tayeb took the victory. So a double reason for Sherbini to want to win: reaching her third Pyramids final in a row, and avenge their last encounter.
Started beautifully for Sherbini, a short first game, 9m, ahead the whole time, 3-1, 8-4, 11-6, with 5 errors from El Tayeb (3 from Sherbini). The second went closer till the middle of the game, 2/2, 3/3, 4/4, 5/5, two enormous rallies, with El Tayeb diving away, but it’s still Sherbini at the end of the game, 11/7, 11m. Only 1 error for El Tayeb now…
Catwoman El Tayeb shows her stunning squash in the next game, this time leading the proceedings, 5/1, 7/2, 8/3. A nice push from Sherbini at that point, finding superb lines at the front and at the back, back to 6/ 8, but a couple of errors and nice shots from El Tayeb, it’s 11/7 for the latter, 12m. 0 error for El Tayeb, but 5 for her opponent.
You know that Sherbini is under threat when Omar El Sherbini, her brother, is starting to make himself heard. 2/2. 3/3. 4/4. A nice string of points for Sherbini, up 7/4, but El Tayeb on her hill and we are back at 7/7, 8/8. So many dives from Catwoman, giving it all what she’s got, several very hard rallies, a few video decisions, but it’s three points in a row for the four time world champ, 11/8… O error from El Tayeb again, 2 for Sherbini. El Tayeb didn’t do much wrong today.
“This one was very tough and she tried to come back. We played two weeks ago and I won the first game before she came back strong. I didn’t want this to happen again this time so I had to be sharp from the start and I am really happy to be through.
“Playing top players, she gets everything back. I am trying to move well, feel good, and I am trying to get as many shots in as I can. It is hard, but I am trying to improve in all those areas.
“Nouran is very tough also. She has been playing really well this tournament. It was a very tough match for her today but all credit to her. It should be a good one, hopefully. I wil go and rest and helpfully I will have a good plan for tomorrow!”