Semi-Finals – Egypt and Pakistan to meet again
Top seeds Egypt and Pakistan will meet in the finals of the world junior teams for the fifth time in a row after both recorded 3-0 semi-final victories today.
 Egypt 3-0  India
Marwan El Shorbagy 3-2 Mahesh Mangaonkar 9/11, 12/10, 11/5, 6/11, 11/5 (72m)
Mohamed Abouelghar 3-1 Abhishek Pradhan 10/12, 11/6, 11/8, 11/5 (33m)
Mazen Hesham 2-0 Vrishab Koitan 11/9, 11/4 (21m)
 Pakistan 3-0  England
Nasir Iqbal 3-0 Ollie Holland 11/5, 11/4, 11/6 (37m)
Syed Hamzah Bukhari 3-0 Tom Ford 11/7, 12/10, 11/7 (53m)
Syed Mujtaba Bukhari 2-1 Richie Fallows 11/7, 9/11, 11/6 (27m)
Scroll down for the playoff match results
Egypt in the final again
Bidding for a 10th final in 11 editions of the Doha WSF Men’s World Junior Team Championships, double individual champion Marwan El Shorbagy got top seeds Egypt off to a good start in the first semi-final against India, but it was far from easy.
Indian number one Mahesh Mangonkar took the first game, and almost the second too, and it wasn’t until the latter part of the fifth game that Shorbagy started to look completely at ease as he completed a 9/11, 12/10, 11/5, 6/11, 11/5 win in 72 minutes.
Again though it was the Indian camp who were happier at the start as Abhishek Pradhan took the first game, and he too made the second a real tough one for his Egyptian opponent to win. Win it he did though, and thereafter Abouelghar seemed to have the match under control as he won 10/12, 11/6, 11/8, 11/5 in 33 minutes.
So Egypt will contest the final again … but who will they play …
“We are so happy to be in the final, India played a really good match, they woke up my players who didn’t have much fight up to then. So, tomorrow, a final, logically against Pakistan, but anything can happen. Who ever we are playing, it will a be a tough match, and I’m grateful they had to work hard today…
Great heart from our players. They went out there and showed we are nearly there.
Mahesh was outstanding, and played to game plan, unfortunately, in the 5th, he couldn’t keep the consistency. But he did play very well, and we are very proud of him.
And the same for Abhishek, he gave Aboelgar a good run, and played some outstanding winners, very proud of him too…
I have the strong feeling Egypt boys were not expecting that hard a battle today. And it was a wake up call…
Marwan, a bit too excited yet again, from the start arguing too loudly with the central ref, was a bit lucky today I thought. He clinched the second game 12/10, after his opponent got distracted upon receiving a pretty harsh no let at 10/10, which kept bothering him during the 3rd game I felt. That’s experience, of course, and Mahesh will probably have learned a lesson there, but if Marwan had gone down 2/0, we may have had a bit of a harder battle on our hands there.
Mahesh did really well to reassess and come strongly in the 4th, again, with Marwan’s focus not at his best, 6 errors in that single game. The fifth, well, Mahesh was a bit short physically, we had a few too many lets, and Marwan just finished the job 11/5.
But far far too many tins (7 in just the second game), short rallies not really constructed, and an Aboelgar just keeping his opponent on a piece of string, forcing the errors out of him….
But like Wagih, Egypt Coach mentioned, a great performance from the Indian it was, and a nice wake up for the Egyptians, who probably will have to fight against a very strong Pakistan tomorrow, unless of course, the English Team creates the upset. And that is always a possibility. Answer in a few minutes…
Pakistan set up repeat meeting with Egypt
It got better for the Englishman, but not a whole lot better as Iqbal, who reached the quarter-finals of the individual event, proved just too fast, nimble and too accurate as he went on to win 11/5, 11/4, 11/6 in 37 minutes.
Pakistan made a great start to the second semi-final as Nasir Iqbal established a 7-0 first game lead against Ollie Holland. It got better for the Englishman, but not a whole lot better as Iqbal, who reached the quarter-finals of the individual event, proved just too fast, nimble and too accurate as he went on to win 11/5, 11/4, 11/6 in 37 minutes.
Bukhari led throughout the first, but Ford was unable to capitalise on a mid-game lead in the second, then was always a couple of points behind in the third as Bukhari ran out the winner 11/7, 12/10, 11/7 in 53 minutes.
That put Pakistan into the final for the sixth time in a row, and tomorrow’s match with Egypt will be the fifth successive final between the two nations – and the head to head stands at two-all.
This is definitely a case of “stay tuned” …
PAKISTAN TOO ACCURATE
Both players have got the same style really. They find stunning length, and build their rallies from there.
Looks simple enough, doesn’t it? But when done as efficiently and simply, it just makes perfect matches….
In the first leg, Holland never looked that comfortable, especially on the backhand. I don’t know his game enough to know if it’s normal, but his backhand I thought lacked a bit of accuracy, and looked a bit laboured.
But then again, Iqbal played a superb match, and hardly put a foot wrong, putting Holland under tremendous pressure. Spotless length, spotless attacks, the Pakistani just never let a inch of hope to his opponent that he could get into the match…
The second leg was more of a battle. First, from the territorial point of view. We had 5 lets in the first point, and 17 decisions in the first game only! And it’s not like they are big boys or anything, they are a bit tiny side, aren’t they. But both wanted to take the ball as early as possible, and they are both pretty quick! Hence, traffic problems.
It got better, mind you, after that very disputed first game, nearly 20m, and although the second was closer score wise, it was a more fluid game. There was not more than two points between them from 6/6, but at 10/10, it at the back that the Pakistani gets his points…
In the 3rd I guess Tom got more tired, and had more trouble clearing the ball, as he got 4 strokes against him, which really made a difference, both score wise and mental wise…
Once again, a superb performance from the Pakistani camp today, and a good effort from the English…
The standout performace in the playoff matches without a doubt came from Japan, who beat sixth seeds USA 2-1 in a thrilling climax.
Playing in the event for only the third time, they have already far exceeded expectations, and tomorrow meet fifth seeds Hong Kong in the 5th/6th playoff.
Hong Kong 3-0 Canada
Yip Tsz Fung 3-0 Cameron Seth 11/6, 11/9, 11/7
Yeung Ho Wai 3-1 Tyler Olson 11/9, 11/5, 6/11, 11/7
Ho Tze Ho 2-0 Tyler Lee 11/8, 11/6
USA 1-2 Japan
Dylan Murray 1-3 Ryosei Kobayashi 8/11, 11/9, 5/11, 7/11 (47m)
Edward Columbia 3-0 Taiki Kaido 11/8, 11/7, 11/5 (27m)
TJ Dembinski 2-3 Tomotaka Endo 7/11, 11/8, 6/11, 11/9, 7/11 (63m)
New Zealand 2-1 Brazil
Josemar Silva 3-0 Jonathan Barnett 11/7, 11/2, 11/6 (25m)
Pedro Veiga 1-3 Zac Millar 11/8, 8/11, 2/11, 5/11 (43m)
Cassiano Silva 0-3 Ben Grindrod 7/11, 3/11, 3/11 (23m)
Kuwait 2-1 Germany
Yousef Saleh 3-0 Andre Ergenz 11/4, 11/4, 11/3 (24m)
Yousif Ali 3-2 Lucas Wirths 8/11, 11/5, 11/8, 11/13, 13/11 (61m)
Athbi Hamad 0-2 Niklas Becher 6/11, 10/12 (14m)
France 2-1 Argentina
Damien Volland 3-0 Federico Cioffi 11/8, 11/8, 11/7 (26m)
Alexandre Cogno 3-2 Rodrigo Obregon 11/6, 11/6, 2/11, 9/11, 11/8 (53m)
Baptiste Masotti 1-2 Francisco Obregon 11/8, 2/11, 6/11 (17m)
Colombia 2-0 South Africa
Juan Vargas 3-0 Ruan Olivier 11/8, 11/9, 11/6 (23m)
Andres De Frutos 3-1 Nell Van Der Merwe 8/11, 11/5, 11/8, 11/7 (37m)
Australia 3-0 Zimbabwe
Rhys Dowling 3-0 Faisal Hassan 11/9, 14/12, 11/8 (23m)
TJ Rarere 3-0 Alex Roscoe 11/5, 11/5, 11/2 (25m)
Tom Calvert 2-0 Blessing Muhwati 11/5, 11/6 (12m)
Belgium 2-1 Qatar
Jan vd Herrewegen 2-3 Adbulla Al Tamimi 15/13, 12/10, 11/13, 5/11, 9/11 (65m)
Jordy Camps 3-0 Faisal Al-Marri 11/5, 11/1, 11/4 (21m)
Vincent Hitchins 3-0 Abdulwahab Al-Ishaq 11/9, 11/4, 11/8 (27m)
Iraq 3-0 Guatemala
Mohammed Ferman Hasan 3-0 Josue Enriquez 11/3, 11/3, 11/5 (19m)
Saifuldeen Ahmed Salman 3-1 Jose Rodriguez 11/6, 9/11, 11/8, 11/7 (33m)
Hasanai Obaid Dakheel 2-0 Ricardo Toscano 11/3, 11/6 (9m)