The U.S. Open Squash Championships presented by Truist will feature a high caliber quarterfinal between Team USA’s Amanda Sobhy and 2017 champion Nour El Tayeb after both players handily progressed through the third round, while Egypt’s Youssef Soliman knocked out eight seed Mazen Hesham to reach his first career U.S. Open quarterfinal Monday, October 10, at the Arlen Specter US Squash Center in Philadelphia.
Monday saw the first half of the round of sixteen play out with the draw’s top half quarterfinals taking shape. Egypt’s Soliman and El Tayeb both disrupted the seedings in a slate of matches that otherwise played out as expected.
El Tayeb, who won the 2017 U.S. Open alongside her husband Ali Farag, has recently made a comeback on the PSA tour following a hiatus due to the birth of her first child returning to the world’s top ten at world No. 6. Farag, world No. 1 and top seed, joins El Tayeb in the quarterfinals after avenging his Qatar Classic loss against Colombia’s Miguel Angel Rodriguez in three games.
Up against England’s six seed Sarah-Jane Perry, El Tayeb swiftly dispatched the world No. 7 in three games and twenty-four minutes.
“I think today was one of my best performances since my comeback,” El Tayeb said. “I think SJ didn’t play very well, so it was a mixture of things. It’s a big confidence boost to play well against someone like SJ. I don’t like to play against each other because our games are a little bit similar, I don’t like her style of play, it’s not my favorite to play against. Maybe she doesn’t like my style of play either, but so far it’s been working and I haven’t lost to her yet.”
El Tayeb will face Amanda Sobhy in the quarterfinals Wednesday–their third match up this season after the American defeated South Africa’s Alexandra Fuller in three games and twenty-six minutes. El Tayeb beat Sobhy in the South Western Open semifinal in Houston, while Sobhy claimed their most recent encounter in the Egyptian Open third round.
“Hopefully I’m going to play well against Amanda, we seem to have big matches and it will be a tough match for both of us, but I hope I enjoy it,” El Tayeb added.
Another seed excited the men’s draw when Youssef Soliman outlasted eight seed Mazen Hesham in an hour-long three game match. Making his third U.S. Open appearance, Soliman will debut in the quarterfinals against Marwan ElShorbagy, who advanced via a default following Lucas Serme’s injury.
“I’m very pleased,” said Soliman. “I played well against Raphael Kandra and again with Mazen Hesham and to beat Mazen in three is not easy and I had to push hard, especially in the beginning, buy I think I got my tactics right and I’m happy with my performance more than the win. I have a rest day tomorrow, but I think to have matches like that in the bank is good so I’m up against Marwan ElShorbagy and he’s another top 10 player. He’s a good friend of mine, but I’m hoping it will be a good match and I’ll do my best to be ready for that.”
The second half of the round of sixteen will play out Tuesday evening to complete the quarterfinal lineup with match play starting at 5pm ET.