Ali Farag def Karim Abdel Gawad

Andy Taylor Announcer 2018 Qatar Classic Quarterfinal Interview Ali Farag
Announcer Andy Taylor | The Voice of the Qatar Classic | Photo: Steve Cubbins
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[2] Ali Farag -02- (EGY) def [6] Karim Abdel Gawad -10- (EGY)

[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check-circle”] Quarterfinal Score: 11-9, 11-7, 11-8 (45m)

Match recap from Squash Announcer Andy Taylor, Voice of the Qatar Classic.

Another big win for Ali Farag, who has defeated the World #9, World #11 and World #10 to reach the Qatar Classic Semifinals for the first time. No question, his Doha draw is the toughest, yet he continues to win. Zero excuses.

And it doesn’t get any easier. Tomorrow, he’ll face last year’s Finalist and World #4 Tarek Momen.

If Farag can earn two more wins, pull this off and capture the title – it’ll be a crowning Platinum achievement. Tomorrow marks his 9th Platinum Semifinal in just a year and a half. Major momentum.

Announcer Corner | How significant a victory for Ali Farag?

It’s huge. This was the 13th meeting between these two top-level Egyptian champions. Each had won six of their previous battles. They’ve faced each other in four championships matches, the PSA World Tour Finals – and earlier this month, shared their 4th career Semifinal at the St. George’s Hill Classic, where Ali Farag leveled their head-to-head with a 4-game, 63-minute victory to reach the Final. Tonight, he took the lead.

► Oct 2018 – St. George’s Hill Classic (SF) – Ali Farag | Score: 7-11, 11-5, 11-2, 11-9 (63m)
► Jun 2018 – PSA World Tour Finals (RR) – Ali Farag | Score: 11-5, 11-5 (21m)
► Feb 2018 – Egyptian National Championship (SF) – Ali Farag | Score: 11-9, 11-3, 8-11, 11-9 | non PSA
► Nov 2017 – Hong Kong Open (SF) – Ali Farag | Score: 11-8, 11-9, 6-11, 11-7 (55m)
► Sep 2016 – Al-Ahram International (F) – Karim Abdel Gawad | Score: 11-4, 11-7, 11-5 (40m)
► Mar 2016 – Montreal Open (F) – Ali Farag | Score: 3-11, 18-16, 9-11, 11-6, 11-7 (97m)
► Sep 2015 – Charlottesville Open (QF) – Ali Farag | Score: 8-11, 14-12, 12-10, 5-11, 13-11
► May 2015 – Sharam El Sheikh International (F) – Karim Abdel Gawad | Score: 11-6, 8-11, 11-9, 6-11, 12-10 (80m)
► Feb 2015 – Pittsburgh Open (R1) – Karim Abdel Gawad | Score: 9-11, 14-12, 12-10, 12-10 (83m)
► Aug 2011 – Egyptian People Tournament (F) – Karim Abdel Gawad | Score: 6-11, 12-10, 11-9, 6-11, 11-8
► May 2011 – Hurghada International (Qualifying) – Karim Abdel Gawad | Score: 11-9, 10-12, 11-9, 12-14, 11-7 (87m)
► Mar 2010 – Swiss Open (SF) – Karim Abdel Gawad | Score: 11-6, 12-10, 11-6

Each player’s announcer introduction for today’s Quarterfinal match…

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[2] Ali Farag -02- (EGY)

Tonight, this 26-year-old is competing in his 16th career Platinum Quarterfinal. Remarkably, he’s reached the Quarterfinals or better at 10 consecutive Platinum events, since capturing his first career major at the 2017 US Open.

And last season, he was ON FIRE. After the victory in Philadelphia, he played an unforgettable Quarterfinal here in Doha, saving 3 match balls against Mohamed ElShorbagy to force a 5th and deciding game. He went on to reach the Final in Hong Kong, the Semifinals of the World Championship and the Tournament of Champions, won the Swedish Open, captured his first Egyptian National Championship – then reached the Semi’s of the Windy City Open, the Finals at El Gouna and the Quarters at the British Open. He concluded the season with a Finalist run at the PSA World Tour Finals.

He picked up the new season right where he left off. In September, he won his 12th PSA title at the NetSuite Open; and just last week, appeared in his 25th career Tour-level Final at the St. George’s Hill Classic. Competing in his 4th Qatar Classic Squash Championship – From Egypt, please welcome the #2 Player in the World, Ali Farag.

▲ R3 — def Saurav Ghosal -11- (IND) | Score: 12-10, 11-4, 11-6 (39m) | RECAP
▲ R2 — def Mohamed Abouelghar -09- (EGY) | Score: 10-12, 11-5, 11-6, 8-11, 11-9 (68m) | RECAP
▲ R1 — Bye

Announcer Corner | Ali Farag’s Best Platinum runs to date:

[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Oct 18 (SF) – US Open
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Jun 18 (F) – PSA World Tour Finals
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Apr 18 (F) – El Gouna International
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Feb 18 (SF) – Windy City Open
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Jan 18 (SF) – Tournament of Champions
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Nov 17 (F) – Hong Kong Open
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Oct 17 (W) – US Open
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Mar 17 (SF) – Windy City Open


Early on, Ali won his first Platinum-level title at the US Open. At the other Platinums, he reached the championship matches in both Hong Kong and El Gouna, the Semifinals at the Tournament of Champions and Windy City Open, and the Quarterfinals at the Qatar Classic and British Open. Overall, he won 3 titles, reached 7 Tour-level Finals, won the Egyptian National Championship, and climbed from World #5 to a career-high ranking of World #2. In only his second appearance at the year-end showdown, he reached the championship match at the PSA World Tour Finals. To top it off, he earned a career-best run at the World Championship, reaching the Semifinals.


Sep-2017 | F | China Open. 17th career PSA Tour-level Final. Falls to Ramy Ashour
Oct-2017 | W | US Open. He and Nour El Tayeb, 1st married couple to win same major sports title on same day
Oct-2017 | F | St. George’s Hill Classic. Falls to Mohamed ElShorbagy
Nov-2017 | F | Hong Kong Open. 2nd career PSA Platinum-level Final
Dec-2017 | SF| World Championship. Career best performance at sport’s most prestigious event
Feb-2018 | W | Swedish Open. 11th PSA World Tour title
Feb-2018 | W | Egyptian National Championship. Wins title for the first time
Apr-2018 | F | El Gouna International. 3rd career PSA Platinum-level Final
Jun-2018 | F | World Tour Finals. Reaches the Final in only his 2nd appearance at the year-end championship

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[6] Karim Abdel Gawad -10- (EGY)

Tonight, this former World #1 is also competing in his 16th Platinum Quarterfinal and 4th here at the Qatar Classic. The season before last, he was simply unbeatable. He won the World Championship, then captured his first two PSA Platinum-level titles here in Doha and at the Tournament of Champions. He went undefeated for over 3-months, winning 20 consecutive matches; and by season’s end, claimed the World #1 ranking for the first time.

He now owns 18 career PSA titles, has reached 29 Finals, and his remarkable consistency has landed him in the PSA World Tour Finals two years running. Competing in his 8th Qatar Classic Squash Championship, he is a 4-time Platinum Finalist, and captured his first Platinum title on this very court, with a 3-game victory over World #1 Mohamed ElShorbagy. From Egypt, please welcome 2016 Champion and the #10 Player in the World – The Baby-Faced Assassin – Karim Abdel Gawad.

▲ R3 — def Declan James -20- (ENG) | Score: 8-11, 11-9, 13-11, 7-11, 11-2 (72m) | RECAP
▲ R2 — def Eain Yow Ng -42- (MAS) | Score: 9-11, 11-13, 11-3, 11-4, 11-4 (61m) | RECAP
▲ R1 — Bye

Announcer Corner | Karim Abdel Gawad’s Best Platinum runs to date:

[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Nov 17 (SF) – Hong Kong Open
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Jun 17 (SF) – PSA World Tour Finals
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Apr 17 (F) – El Gouna International
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Jan 17 (W) – Tournament of Champions
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Nov 16 (W) – Qatar Classic
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Oct 16 (SF) – US Open
[vector_icon icon=”fas fa-check”] Mar 16 (SF) – British Open


Karim Abdel Gawad’s 2016-17 season was extraordinary. He won the World Championship, earned his first two Platinum-level titles (including the Qatar Classic), at one point won 20 consecutive matches, and ultimately captured 5 PSA titles in 8 championship matches. Crazy stuff.


Aug-16 | F | 1st Platinum Final at Hong Kong Open
Sep-16 | W | Won 14th PSA title at the Al-Ahram International in Giza
Oct-16 | SF| US Open (3rd career Platinum SF), 1st career victory over Gregory Gaultier
Nov-16 | W | World Championship, 1st career victory over Mohamed ElShorbagy in the SF
Nov-16 | W | 1st Platinum title at the Qatar Classic, defeats ElShorbagy in the Final
Jan-17 | W | 2nd Platinum title at the Tournament of Champions, defeats Gaultier in the Final
Feb-17 | F | 26th Tour-level Final at the Swedish Open
Feb-17 | * | 20-match win streak through the Swedish Open SF (Lasted over 3-months)
Apr-17 | F | 4th Platinum Final at the El Gouna International
Apr-17 | W | 18th PSA title at the Houston Open
May-17 | * | Claims the World #1 Ranking
Jun-17 | * | 1st appearance in the World Tour Finals, where he reaches the Semifinals