9:57 pm
17 Apr 2024

Favourites Shabana & David Claim Qatar Crowns

4 Nov 2007

Amr Shabana and Nicol David confirmed their status as the world's number one squash players by winning the Qatar Classic titles in style in Doha - Shabana claiming the men's crown for the first time after beating fourth seed Gregory Gaultier in the final of the $120,000 PSA Super Series Platinum event and David retaining the $77,000 women's WISPA Gold event trophy by defeating fifth seed Natalie Grainger in straight games.

It was only six days after winning the richest title in the sport, at the Saudi International, that 28-year-old Shabana, the top seed from Egypt, battled for 52 minutes to topple Frenchman Gaultier 11-4, 8-11, 11-6, 11-5 to win the 18th PSA Tour title of his career - and the fourth of the year.

"For two months I have been focusing on winning titles," Shabana told www.squashsite.co.uk afterwards. "I don't really pay any attention to the points, the ranking and all that. It's the worst thing you can do.

"Tonight we are off to Hong Kong. We start all over again: another fight, another battle!"

Nicol David's win was a massive confidence-booster for the Malaysian who crashed out of the second round of last month's World Open in Madrid, thereby failing to reach the quarter-finals of a WISPA World Tour event for the first time in more than three and a half years.

The 24-year-old from Penang was in sparkling form as she despatched Grainger, the Pan American Games gold medallist from the USA, 9-6, 9-4, 10-9 in 43 minutes.

"It's good to start winning again," said David after picking up the 23rd Tour title of her career.

Men's final:
[1] Amr Shabana (EGY) bt [4] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) 11-4, 8-11, 11-6, 11-5 (52m)

Women's final:
[1] Nicol David (MAS) bt [5] Natalie Grainger (USA) 9-6, 9-4, 10-9 (43m)