Wheadon Wins In Tour Debut In Iran
3 Mar 2007
South Africa's Gary Wheadon concluded a remarkable run in the FAJR International when he triumphed in five games over Egypt's top seed Sherif Kamel in the final of the PSA Tour event in its second year at Kish Island in Iran to claim the title in his maiden appearance on the Tour.
Competing in the event in his first month as a member of the Professional Squash Association, Wheadon made his Kish Island breakthrough in the second round when he defeated Kuwait's second seed Bader Al Hussaini.
Victory over 15th seed Jonas Laursen, of Denmark, in the quarter-finals took the 26-year-old from Cape Town into the last four - where he beat the out-of-sorts Englishman Robbie Temple, seeded six, 11-9, 11-8, 11-8 in 33 minutes.
In the final, Wheadon twice had to come from behind before recording his sensational 9-11, 11-9, 6-11, 11-9, 11-9 victory in 78 minutes over Kamel, the 22-year-old from Alexandria appearing in his third PSA Tour final.
Wheadon is in good company: the last player to storm through a PSA Tour field as a debutant did so in November 2004, in the Athens Open in Greece. The then 17-year-old had just won the first of his record two World Junior Championship titles, and this week enthralled the Grand Central Terminal crowds in New York to reach the semi-finals of the Tournament of Champions. His name: Ramy Ashour, the 19-year-old Egyptian now ranked five in the world.