2021 Platinum Reports REPORTS

R3: Marwan works out Youssef

R3: [6] Marwan ElShorbagy 3-0 Youssef Ibrahim (Egy) 12-10, 11-7, 11-4 (47m)

Youssef played a superb first game, reading his opponent game like a book and killing the ball on the left side (his forehand) on virtually every forehand crosscourt his opponent would play.

Some discussions in English, then endless ramblings in Egyptian from Mr Shorbagy Junior changed the course of the game, and allowed the experienced streetwise squash player to take the opener 12/10 21m of hard games.

The second game was back to calm, and Mr Shorbagy played excellent squash from that point on, calm and collected, not a single error in the second game, only one in the third.

Some players win matches with squash. Others with mental tricks. To each their own.

Youssef: Mind games. I am angry with myself today because my coach told me he was going to play mind games, and I knew he was going to play mind games and talk with the ref and still, I let it get to me and affect my performance.

I have no problems with his game, I can read it pretty well, and that’s why I was expecting a good result today. Gutted that I let the mental side of things get the better of my performance.

But that’s a new experience, if I want to beat all the players, I have to accept different behaviours from them, and learn to focus on my game, and my game only. Disappointed to lose but learned a new lesson today.


Marwan: “I watched my brother playing last night and I thought that if I’m going to have a chance in this event then I need to be stepping up every single match and every single point. I saw it in his eyes and he’s actually the reason I was into it from the first point.

“I’m happy with my performance and more my personality and character, that was the most important thing today to find myself on court. I have a great team with me, I spoke to Danny [Massaro] yesterday for an hour and he got me mentally ready for today.

“It’s going to be a good match [between Paul Coll and Gregory Gaultier]. It’s the first time they’ve played in a while, I’ll just watch. We all play with each other every single event, we know each other’s game, we add things each event and try to learn from our mistakes. I’ll just watch the match, there’s nothing I’ll be looking for, I know their game, they know mine as well. I hope they play a long match, five games, for now I’m happy with today.”