Egypt’s World No.3 Tarek Momen is the new PSA Men’s World Champion after beating New Zealand’s Paul Coll 11-8, 11-3, 11-4.
After yesterday’s win, the Egyptian who was appearing in back-to-back world championship finals after falling to world No.1 Ali Farag last year, has carved out a unique distinction along with wife Raneem El Welily of being the first married couple in squash history to become World Champions.
El Welily won the women’s World Championship in 2017 and two weeks earlier El Welily fell to World No.4 Nour El Sherbini in the final of the women’s World Championship, held in front of Cairo’s Great Pyramid of Giza.
The number two seed took just 39 minutes to see off the challenge of Coll to land his first world title in at the Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex, yesterday.
Coll was no match for Momen as he fell short in his attempt to become just the second Kiwi to win the men’s title after Ross Norman in 1986.
The Egyptian set a fast pace right from the word go and Coll had no answer. He gave a fight in the first losing it 11-8, but in the two games Momen held sway.
“It was tough right from the world go,” Coll admitted.
“Tarek wasn’t missing and making me do a lot of work. It was taking its toll right from the first rally because he was playing so accurate right from the start.
“I’m a little bit disappointed on tonight, but credit to Tarek he really delivered on the big stage tonight … I’m very proud of reaching my first championship final.” Coll took to the court in the third game with strapping on his right quad as a brutal week which saw him spend almost an hour more on court than Momen throughout the tournament took its toll..
“If I tell you how many times I imagined making this speech my whole life, it’s countless, and now I just don’t know what to say, it’s so hard to digest,” said Momen after winning his 7th PSA Tour title.
“I just worked so hard for this. For years, I’ve been trying and trying, I came up this close but then it didn’t happen for me. I haven’t won a Platinum event and the first major I ever win gets to be the World Championship, it’s unbelievable.
“It has been a childhood dream of mine to become the World Champion at some point. I am 31 now, and I was wondering whether I would have the opportunity to do it, so to be able to do it at this age and to still feel that I can give it my all for a few more years is just unbelievable.”
Momen - who takes home over $45,000 in winnings - becomes the 18th man to get his hands on the iconic trophy, while he is the fourth Egyptian in a row to win the men’s World Championship.
He also qualifies for the season-ending PSA World Tour Finals which will take place in June and it pits together the reigning World Champions and PSA Platinum title winners, with the remaining spots going to the highest-placed players on the Road to Egypt Standings, with points on offer at all PSA World Tour events.
“I want to congratulate Paul on such an event and an amazing achievement. He’s done so well making it this far. He had the better of our last finals appearances, I’m just glad I managed to get this one.