PREVIEW : Draw predicts another ElShorbagy v Farag final

World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy, winner of last week’s Hong Kong Open, will look to keep his winning streak going when he opens up his CIB Black Ball Squash Open campaign against Hong Kong’s World No.14 Max Lee when the first ever edition of the PSA World Tour Platinum tournament takes place between 3rd and 9th December at the Black Ball Sporting Club in Cairo.

The CIB Black Ball Open will be the first major tournament to take place in Egypt’s capital since the men’s 2016 PSA World Championships and Alexandria-born ElShorbagy will look to extend his run of successive wins over Lee to three matches after both players receive a bye into round two of the event.

ElShorbagy is on the same side of the draw as World No.4 Tarek Momen, who ended a four-year PSA Tour title drought when he won the Channel VAS Championships earlier this season, while Karim Abdel Gawad, winner of the 2016 World Championship, will also feature in the top half of the draw.

Ramy Ashour, the man Gawad beat in that 2016 final, fails to feature at the event after withdrawing due to a persistent knee-injury which has prevented him from appearing at any tournaments this season so far while Mexican Cesar Salazar and Spaniard Borja Golan are also absent due to injury.

Meanwhile, just days after meeting in the final of the Hong Kong Open, World No.2 Ali Farag is seeded to meet ElShorbagy in the title decider once again but faces a number of difficult challenges en route, with the likes of World No.5 Simon Rösner, World No.7 Miguel Angel Rodriguez and World No.8 Paul Coll all featuring on the lower half of the draw.