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Egypt Seeded To Win World Team Squash Title In Chennai

22 Nov 2007

In the draw for the 21st ICL Men's World Team Championship, announced today by the World Squash Federation, Egypt are seeded to win the title for the second time since 1999.

The biggest squash event ever to be staged in India - featuring 29 nations - will be held at the ICL Squash Academy in Chennai from 6-12 December.

Egypt, led by the world's two highest-ranked players Amr Shabana and Ramy Ashour, are expected to face second seeds England, the defending champions, in the final on Wednesday 12 December - a repeat of the 2005 final in the last championship in Pakistan. England's squad features four players ranked inside the world's top 15 - led by world No5 James Willstrop.

Eight times champions Australia are named as third seeds, while France, runners-up in 2003, are seeded four.

Hosts India are seeded 11th and expected to achieve their highest finish in the event since 1979. New Zealand, the 13th seeds, join Australia as the only country to have competed in all events since the inaugural championship in 1967. England, however, can also boast a 100% appearance record in the event - though competed as 'Great Britain' until 1981.

Three nations - Chinese Taipei, Venezuela and Sri Lanka - will be making their debuts in the 2007 championship.

The 2007 Championship will be the qualifying event for the 2009 World Games in Chinese Taipei - with the top 12 nations receiving two spots each in the main draw.

The Championship will be played in two stages: In the first stage, the teams will be placed in eight pools, the teams playing each other in a 'round-robin league'. The top two teams from each pool will then progress to the knockout phase, while the remaining teams will play for positions 17 to 29.

The Pool line-ups are as follow (with seeding in brackets):

POOL A: [1] EGYPT, [16] GERMANY, [17/24] FINLAND, [25/29] RUSSIA
POOL B: [2] ENGLAND, [15] HONG KONG, [17/24] SPAIN
POOL C: [3] FRANCE, [14] USA, [17/24] JAPAN, [25/29] VENEZUELA
POOL D: [4] AUSTRALIA, [13] NEW ZEALAND, [17/24] SCOTLAND
POOL E: [5] MALAYSIA, [12] SOUTH AFRICA, [17/24] KUWAIT, [25/29] SRI LANKA
POOL F: [6] CANADA, [11] IRELAND, [17/24] AUSTRIA
POOL G: [7] PAKISTAN, [10] INDIA, [17/24] KENYA, [25/29] BERMUDA
POOL H: [8] NETHERLANDS, [9] WALES, [17/24] SWEDEN, [25/29] CHINESE TAIPEI

Official website: wmt2007.com