R1 Session 1 : Danielle, Enora, Lucy, Jana win

11.00 Matches :

Jana Shiha (Egy) 3-1 Coline Aumard (Fra)             10-12, 11-5, 11-9, 11-6 (45m)
Danielle Letourneau (Can) 3-1 Menna Nasser (Egy) 9-11, 11-4, 11-4, 11-3 (26m)
Enora Villard (Fra) 3-0 Haley Mendez (Usa)                    11-5, 11-8, 12-10 (29m)
Lucy Turmel (Eng) 3-0 Emilia Soini (Fin)                          11-3, 11-3, 11-8 (31m)


Jana Shiha (Egy) 3-1 Coline Aumard (Fra)

The return of Coline Aumard after 244 days of injury break. She was not moving at her best yet – you could see how careful she was on court with her movement, and that cost her a few strokes but it’s a good start of procedures for the French lady.

As for Jana, it’s SOOOO NICE to see her back with her brain on court. Well apart a return of serve in the tin at game ball 10/9 for her in the first game, that cost her the opener, bless her.

Still very good performance from both girls, considering each their circumstances.

Jana :

For me, fitness is important of course, but mostly, mostly, your mental state is paramount. For a year and a half, my head hasn’t been really in place, between the studies, the squash, and everything else!

I won the BJO 2020, then a 10K in India, and that was it! I didn’t have a single good win after that. But now, although I know I’m still not where I would like to be in terms of physical fitness, at least I feel more comfortable mentally. And today it made the difference because you can get away being not that fit but if you head is not on the court, there is nothing you can do.

El Gouna is really my lucky charm, it’s my third time here and I always have good results.

Coline :

I always knew it was going to be a tough match. And when I saw the draw I went ouch. But as Jana is a person I truly appreciate both on and off court, and who plays at a very good level, I was really happy to play her as it’s really what I need at this point in time.

Of course, I had some lapses in focus, I obviously miss match fitness as you cannot replicate competition…

And that was really a “baptism of fire” as I had to play a player of Jana’s class, on a court that was a bit challenging – I kept sweeping my shoes as the court is pretty dusty – and then, I had a blood injury. That’s done with the worst conditions I could get!

But so happy to be able to finish the match with no injury, and to be back on court..


Danielle Letourneau (Can) 3-1 Menna Nasser (Egy)

A very short first game with Mena very quick to volley and take the ball away from Danielle. From the second, the Canadian was in control although I felt she was less relaxed and focused as she normally is…

Danielle :

In the first game, the conditions suited her game I felt more than mine. She was shooting and not missing a single one.

Today, not the best for me in terms of mental status. I feel a bit homesick at the moment, o at the start I feel I was a bit more nervous than I would normally be.

I never felt comfortable on there today, but I’m happy I was able to pull through not feeling 100%.

Enora Villard (Fra) 3-0 Haley Mendez (Usa) 

Enora :

Although my game plan was to pin her at the back before taking her to the front, she didn’t seem to move very well, in particular on the left front corner. So I was hesitating between taking her to the front quickly or to keep her at the back and I was losing my plan a bit.

In the first two games I feel I was in control. But then in the third, she changed her tactic, she starting hitting hard and low, and I was a bit too much at the back, it took me a while to adapt. And also, it was the first time I was getting close to a platinium victory, so I guess I was a bit nervous, and I had to control that. I could have made my life easier, for sure!

Lucy Turmel (ENG) 3-0 Emilia Soini (FIN)

Those two played not a long time ago in the Finnish Open, Emily won that one on homeground, a very tough 3/0, 16/14, 11/8, 12/10. So today Lucy knew what to expect and she was able to take time away from the Finnish racquet…

Lucy: Today I was very clear on the way I wanted to play, my concentration was good, and I knew that if I was able to execute the plan I put in place, I would be alright.

My game plan was much more thorough that it was last time, because I had played her.

Tomorrow I think I’m playing Olivia Blatchford but to be honest I didn’t really look at it, I wanted to focus on my match…