QF: Paul Coll 3-0 Mohamed Elshorbagy

[2] Paul Coll (NZL) 3-0 [7] Mohamed Elshorbagy (ENG)  14-12, 11-6, 11-2 (49m)

Next opponent: Mostafa Asal / Mazen Hesham

New Zealand’s World No.2 Paul Coll earned his place in the semi-finals after he outlasted 2017 World Champion Mohamed ElShorbagy to win 3-0 in the first of two matches at the Palm Hills Club.

Coll trailed 14-6 in the pair’s head-to-head record coming into today’s match – which included defeat to ElShorbagy in the 2021-22 PSA World Championships in Cairo – but he did get the better of the Englishman during December’s Hong Kong Open.

The first match played straight into Coll’s hands, with a high-quality, entertaining battle lasting 28 minutes in length. ElShorbagy was looking to soak up the pressure and hit Coll with the angles, while Coll was content to make the rallies as long and physical as he could.

ElShorbagy saved two game balls to hold two game ball opportunities of his own, but he couldn’t convert as Coll came back to take a crucial opening game.

The importance of that first game was evident as ElShorbagy looked to tire physically in the second game, making more errors as the game dragged on. Coll kept his composure and a 2-0 lead was soon his.

The third game quickly followed as ElShorbagy went for winner after winner, frequently finding the tin. That handed Coll a 14-12, 11-6, 11-2 win and he will line up against World No.3 Mostafa Asal for a place in his second PSA World Championship final.

Paul :  “I didn’t want to get tied down on the backhand, he’s so accurate there and hard to compete with. I had to shift it at the right times and attack him when I could.

“At 10-8 up [in the first game], he came at me like a rocket, so it put me on the back foot, which I knew he would do at some stage because he’s so good at changing styles and aggression. I managed to sneak that game, which I think was pretty crucial.

“I was never easing up, I wanted to keep it quite open and physical. I’m very happy with how I handled the conditions and he’s always made me a bit nervous playing him, so I’m happy with that win.”