World No.8 Tarek Momen yesterday ended Abdulla Mohamed Al Tamimi’s fine run at the QTerminals Qatar Classic, overpowering the home favourite 3-1 to book a blockbuster quarter-final clash against top seed Ali Farag.
The first two games witnessed intense battle between the two players but the eighth seeded Egyptian earned double advantage, winning the games with scores of 11-8, 12-10. Al Tamimi’s fight paid off as he managed to come back in the match by taking the next game 11-7.
However, Momen sealed the victory with an 11-8 win to reach the Qatar Classic quarter-finals for sixth consecutive time.
Following the 53-minute encounter, Momen said the match was both challenging and enjoyable.
“It’s good vibes, I’m happy that I was tested in that manner, this was a tough match for me mentally,” The former World No.3 – who won the 2019 World Championship in Doha, said.
Momen attributed his victory to his unwavering focus at every crucial stage and his commitment to minimising errors throughout the match.
In terms of his aspirations for the future, Moamen shared his determination to vie for the title in every tournament he participates in.
He also affirmed his dedication to striving for victory in his upcoming match against Farag, the top seed, whom he acknowledged as a technically exceptional and influential figure in recent times.
Unlike Momen, World No. 1 Farag did not face much resistance from his opponent in his Round 3 match.
Farag stayed on course for his third Qatar Classic final with a straight game win (11-7, 11-7, 12-10) over his compatriot Fares Dessouky in 40 minutes.
The day’s first upset came earlier when Scotland’s Greg Lobban eliminated last year’s runner up Victor Crouin in a five-game battle.
In the first men’s match of the day, World No. 9 Crouin won the opening game 11-5, before World No.25 Lobban fought back to level in the next game. Crouin started game three on the front foot, and despite Lobban rarely trailing by more than a point, the Frenchman edged his Scottish counterpart to take the advantage.
Lobban came back sharply in the fourth game, but was trailing one point behind opponent constantly before the No.7 seed Crouin made late errors as the Scottish No.1 squared with a 12-10 win in game 4. After eing tied at 6-6 in the decisive game, the 31-year-old Lobban made surer he break away with a decent lead and went on to secure a 3-2 victory (5-11, 12-10, 9-11, 12-10, 11-7) in the 74-minute long thriller.
Speaking on the match, Lobban said: “I’m just so happy to put myself in this position, in the last eight in one of the biggest tournaments in the world after a long long time of trying so I’m stoked.”
The result means that Lobban will face Joel Makin in his first Platinum tournament quarter final.
Makin defeated Egyptian World No.16 Mohamed ElSherbini in straight games (11-8, 11-3, 11-7) to progress into the quarter finals.
ElSherbini enters quarters
Meanwhile, in the women’s round three, World No.1 Nour ElSherbini came from behind to beat fellow Egyptian Rowan Elaraby 3-1.
ElSherbini, who won her second Junior World title in Doha in 2012, said playing in Doha brings back nice memories.
“I have an amazing memory on this court. I won my Second World Junior championship here. And of course, the last women’s event I was in the final and I beat Nicole in the semi finals. That was my second time ever to beat her. So yeah, of course I have amazing memories, and I’m really, really happy that we are playing in the women’s event here in Qatar. Everyone was talking about how amazing the event is and it’s a privilege for us to be here and play.”
ElSherbini will face World No.6 Nele Gilis in her quarter final today.
The Belgium No.1 earned her place in the quarter final with a 3-0 win against World No.29 Nada Abbas with the 27-year-old recovering well after being caught in the face by a loose shot.