FINAL : Gohar beats Sherbini to retain title

[2] Nouran Gohar (Egy) 3-1 [1] Nour El Sherbini (Egy)   11-6, 11-13, 11-6, 11-6 (81m)

Nouran Gohar made it two titles in a week as she beat top seed Nour El Sherbini to claim her second El Gouna title in a row …

“Beating Nour is a big thing”, declared Nouran at the end of the match. You bet. Nour won their last three matches, only win was in BO3 CIB Finals last year, and you have three more wins for Nour.

Today, we were very lucky to play on the court, as we had some drizzle between 5pm and 7pm. The IEvents team was ready to switch to the Squash Complex if needed, but thank the Gods of Squash, it was not needed.

Still, the weather was pretty humid and had a lot of wind. At the end of the battle, Nour confessed she didn’t enjoy those conditions, which apparently affected her game more than Nouran’s.

Today, Nouran was on fire from the first rally. From 2/3 to 9/3, 7 points in a row, 11/9 in 11m actual game – plus 5m of blood injury for one of Nouran’s knee (left I think).

A good response from the Princess in the second, nothing between them until 7/7, Nouran losing her two review within two points at that moment, two no lets confirmed.

Nour set up her first game ball 10/9, but she required two more to close the game 13/11 – a few errors creeping in the Terminator’s at the far end.

From that moment on to be honest, I thought that Nouran was flying out there. Yes, Nour was able at times to absorb Nouran’s hammering by lifting her shots and we had some lovely rallies but Nouran was at the helm in the third, 7/3, 8/5, 11/6 the longest game of the match – actual game – 16m.

A very good patch for Nour at the start of the fourth, up to 6/6, maybe the ball softening a bit. Nouran is a bit on the backfoot and Nour is able to impose her flair squash.

Another blood injury – the other knee – another stoppage at 6/6. And another one at 8/6 Nouran serving. Nouran is not the Terminator anymore, but the Bionic Woman! She will keep on crushing her opponent til the last rally, and it’s 11/6 by video decision, stroke to Nouran.


Today she played really good squash. I think the conditions suited her better than me, she was more ready. This is not the conditions I’d like to play on, I wasn’t feeling very comfortable on court.

I needed to make some changes in my game, trying to find another plan, another way to beat her… I didn’t…

Another match, another lesson.


“To be honest, I always say I’m very lucky to have this rivalry with Nour. She brings the best out of me, if I don’t play my best squash I can’t beat her, for sure.

“I have so much respect for her. She had an unbelievable season. She deserves more than anyone to be world number one, and to beat her is such a big thing for me.

“She always works on my weaknesses and is one of the most strategic players. She knows what she’s doing on court.

“Playing against her really benefits me as a player and I’m very glad of that. Obviously I can’t wait for the next final!

“To be honest, I came here today obviously wanting to win but I wanted to spend time with her on court. I want to really play and enjoy it. That’s the most important thing. Winning made it extra special but I’m just enjoying it and am very happy with that.

“The breaks for blood injuries did not help at all. Every time it happened, I was leading. I don’t like breaks in general, I like to keep up the momentum.

“I was calling my husband and mum before this and said ‘I’m going to give it everything. I’m not leaving this court without giving 100, 150 percent. I think that’s enough!

“We are so lucky to be able to play in such an amazing place, thanks to all the sponsors, Mr Samih Sawiris and Amr Mansi, and all the people involved, thank you so much for giving us the chance to compete in such an amazing and beautiful place.

“It’s an amazing night, and having this crowd watching and cheering for both of us is a huge thing for both of us. Thank you so much for coming, I love playing in Egypt because of that.”