QF: Gina 3-2 Nour ET

[4] Georgina Kennedy (ENG) 3-2 [6] Nour El Tayeb (EGY)  12-10, 4-11, 11-5, 3-11, 11-4 (60m)

That moment you realise that Nour El Tayeb is still hungry for much, much more. Another racquet crashed but quietly on the side outside the court and NOT on her leg at the end of the match.

I can understand her frustration. She threw everything at Gina tonight. She gave everything, and left it all on there. But Gina was just volleying everything so early, found exquisite volley drop shots, or/and redrops, her length was immaculate, and her fitness impeccable.

Gina about 18months ago was a fitness machine but very little short game. Within that period she added so many leaves to her game one can only salute her work and her coach Ben Ford. I told her last year in BlackBall she would become world number 1. I stand by my words.

Gina had all the answers tonight. Nour didn’t ask the right questions maybe? That’s something she and her team will have to look into… It was not a fitness or determination question. Game plan?

The first game is the key. Nour had a game ball, but Gina finds the nick on Nour’s serve at 10/9, then a crispy volley drop shot, yet again, and a last attack to make good measure, Nour is doing one of her trademark splits, but it’s still Gina 12/10.

Maybe having the first game would have made Gina worried a bit?

Nour, who hadn’t made a single error in that first, doesn’t do any in the second, a game she take “easily”, 11/4 but loses the next one as easily, 11/5, making her first error in the process. 8m game.

8m is also the length of the 4th game, Nour even more easily, 11/3!

But if Gina was a bit wobbly in that fourth, making 6 unforced errors, she was on fire again in the decider: 6/1, 9/3, 11/4. Nour was not able to hide her frustration. Gina too good tonight.


“I’m really happy with that. Besides the first game, scores weren’t that close and once someone got off to a start it was really hard.

“Before, when I’ve played Nour she’s made me open the court way too early and today I wanted to push her back as far as I could and still be positive.

“In a length game, I can’t match her skills by any means so I really wanted to attack the back and take it in short when she was behind me. I can’t read her from the front when she has time.

“I think I played a really good fifth. I could feel her drop off in some of the games but her class shone through.

“I’m really relieved to get through that. I’m a bit shellshocked to be honest, I’ve not beaten her except when she was injured at World Tour Finals so this is a really big win for me.