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Al Muzayen Delights Kuwait Cup Crowd

Local hero Abdullah Al Muzayen fully justified his wildcard status in the inaugural Kuwait PSA Cup when he dismissed higher-ranked Colombian Miguel Angel Rodriguez in straight games in the first round match in the eighth PSA World Series squash event of the year at Green Island in Kuwait City.

1st round:
Nicolas Mueller (SUI) bt Gregoire Marche (FRA) 11-8, 5-11, 11-8, 6-11, 11-6 (75m)
Chris Ryder (ENG) bt Andrew Wagih Shoukry (EGY) 11-7, 11-4, 11-6 (47m)
Abdullah Al Muzayen (KUW) bt Miguel Angel Rodriguez (COL) 11-5, 14-12, 11-7 (36m)
Borja Golan (ESP) bt Tom Richards (ENG) 7-11, 11-8, 11-6, 11-9 (71m)
Olli Tuominen (FIN) bt Robbie Temple (ENG) 11-7, 11-13, 11-6, 12-10 (65m)
Saurav Ghosal (IND) bt Tarek Momen (EGY) 11-9, 6-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-5 (75m)
Mathieu Castagnet (FRA) bt Mark Krajcsak (HUN) 11-5, 11-7, 11-7 (45m)
Chris Simpson (ENG) bt Campbell Grayson (NZL) 9-11, 11-6, 11-4, 5-11, 11-8 (80m)
Simon Rosner (GER) bt Marwan El Shorbagy (EGY) 4-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-9 (59m)
Stephen Coppinger (RSA) bt Mohd Ali Anwar Reda (EGY) 11-3, 11-5, 11-9 (48m)
Jonathan Kemp (ENG) bt Martin Knight (NZL) 9-11, 11-2, 11-8, 11-4 (45m)
Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY) bt Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) 8-11, 11-9, 11-6, 12-10 (65m)
Jan Koukal (CZE) bt Alan Clyne (SCO) 9-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-8 (60m)
Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) bt Ong Beng Hee (MAS) 11-6, 11-7, 11-9 (43m)
Max Lee (HKG) bt Farhan Mehboob (PAK) 11-3, 11-4, 11-7 (23m)
Mohammed Abbas (EGY) bt Adrian Waller (ENG) 11-2, 11-6, 8-11, 11-4 (39m)

At 80, Kuwaiti Al Muzayen is the lowest-ranked player in the 48-man draw of the star-studded international event being held to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the country’s independence. It was his first meeting with the experienced Colombian, ranked 46 places higher.

But the cool left-hander defeated Rodriguez 11-5, 14-12, 11-7 in 36 minutes – and immediately thanked the organisers for giving him the break.

“I really would like to thank Her Excellency Sheikha Fadyah Al-Sabah and the organisers for this amazing tournament,” the delighted 23-year-old told www.squashsite.com afterwards. “I’m so proud I won for them tonight.

“I’ve been training very hard, thanks to the support of the KW Federation, Her Excellency Sheikha Fadyah Al-Sabah and my sponsor, Mahmood Al Ghanin.

“I knew that I had to work on my fitness to be able to compete with the top players. And tonight, I have my reward. I just beat the world number 34!”

Hong Kong’s Max Lee was another notable first round winner. The 23-year-old world No56 beat out-of-sorts PakistaniFarhan Mehboob, a former world No16, 11-3, 11-4, 11-7 in just 23 minutes.

And Australian Ryan Cuskelly denied former world No7 Ong Beng Hee the chance of a second round place when he beat the higher-ranked Malaysian 11-6, 11-7, 11-9.

India’s world No32 Saurav Ghosal survived one of the toughest clashes of the day, coming back from 2/1 down to beat fast-rising Egyptian Tarek Momen, the world No19, 11-9, 6-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-5 in 75 minutes.

“I’m really happy, as this is my only big win since my foot injury months ago,” said the Kolkata-born 25-year-old. “I knew the form was coming back, I had a pretty close call against Daryl (Selby) in Hong Kong, and did not too bad against LJ (Anjema) in Rotterdam.

“But beating Tarek, who is playing so well at the moment, is really a great achievement for me. You don’t beat Nick (Matthew) 3/0 if you are not playing very well!”

The longest match of the day saw England’s Chris Simpson prevail 9-11, 11-6, 11-4, 5-11, 11-8 over New ZealanderCampbell Grayson in 80 minutes.

Chris Ryder and Jonathan Kemp provided further English first round successes: Ryder downed Andrew Wagih Shoukry, a 21-year-old Egyptian making his first ever appearance in a World Series event, 11-7, 11-4, 11-6, while Kemp saw off New Zealander Martin Knight 9-11, 11-2, 11-8, 11-4.

2nd round line-up:
[1] Nick Matthew (ENG) v Nicolas Mueller (SUI)
[13] Cameron Pilley (AUS) v Chris Ryder (ENG)
[9] Daryl Selby (ENG) v Abdullah Al Muzayen (KUW)
[7] Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY) v Borja Golan (ESP)
[8] Thierry Lincou (FRA) v Olli Tuominen (FIN)
[10] Laurens Jan Anjema (NED) v Saurav Ghosal (IND)
[16] Alister Walker (BOT) v Mathieu Castagnet (FRA)
[3] James Willstrop (ENG) v Chris Simpson (ENG)
[4] Amr Shabana (EGY) v Simon Rosner (GER)
[15] Stewart Boswell (AUS) v Stephen Coppinger (RSA)
[12] Mohd Azlan Iskandar (MAS) v Jonathan Kemp (ENG)
[5] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) v Omar Abdel Aziz (EGY)
[6] Peter Barker (ENG) v Jan Koukal (CZE)
[14] Adrian Grant (ENG) v Ryan Cuskelly (AUS)
[11] Omar Mosaad (EGY) v Max Lee (HKG)
[2] Karim Darwish (EGY) v Mohammed Abbas (EGY)

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