R2: [6] Mazen Hesham 3-0 Lucas Serme

[6] Mazen Hesham (EGY) 3-0 Lucas Serme (FRA) 11-8, 12-10, 11-8 (35m)

Next Opponent: Youssef Soliman

Incredible run from Lucas Serme, who after a disappointing season, seems to finally find his marks again after the birth of his son a few months ago… He beat Grégoire Marche in round one and today, gave Mazen a good run for his money too!

Lucas : “Actually, with the little one, it’s hard to find that balance, to convince yourself that with less training and less sleep, you can still play at this level. The first matches mess with your head and confidence, making you wonder, ‘Can I really do this?’

Now, at the end of the season, I’m finally finding a new balance, a new rhythm. I’ve accepted that it’s almost like a different sport for me now; I won’t play the same way, but I can find new strengths.

I talked to players who, like me, had children and continued to play professionally, like James Willstrop and Nick Matthew. Their advice has been incredibly helpful, giving me a lot of tips on how to keep playing at a high level.”

Mazen : “I wasn’t really sharp today, but that’s the way it is at this stage of the tournament. I had a day off and he played a lot better than I expected, so hopefully I have better performances in the next round.

“Without Soliman, we are good friends and we’ve played a couple of times on the tour. He makes it really tough for me, but I think it will be a good match.

“I’ve been much better this season than the last few seasons. I feel better physically and mentally, and that’s showing on the court. Hopefully, I can get a title before the season ends.”