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CIB Black Ball Open RD2: Gohar Pushed to Five Again

Egypt’s World No.2 Nouran Gohar was pushed to five-game once again at the CIB Black Ball Open as she overcame England’s former World No.3 Alison Waters 9-11, 11-6, 8-11, 11-8, 14-12 to reach the quarter finals of the PSA World Tour Gold event.

Yesterday saw Gohar forced to come from two games down against compatriot Farida Mohamed in the first round and she was put through the ringer once again as 36-year-old Waters came close to producing a huge upset.

The experienced English player started well to go one game up as she utilised her clever shot selection to cause problems for an out of sorts Gohar. The former World No.1 came back well though as the two players continued to trade blows and exchange leads with Gohar drawing back level once again in the fourth.

The fifth proved to be the tightest battle of all with Waters staying within touching distance of Gohar and going on to save three match balls.

It looked as though that had edged Waters ahead, as she looked to claim her first victory over a top five player since 2018 – which coincidently also came over Gohar. However, the Egyptian battled back strongly to save two match ball attempts from Waters and show nerves of steel to convert on her fourth attempt.

Up next for the World No.2 is New Zealand’s World No.8 Joelle King.

“I don’t think I’m the type of player like [Karim Abdel] Gawad who plays a lot of five setters,” joked Gohar afterwards.

“Every tournament has something special and this tournament it seems like I’m playing five games – I just have to adapt and take it as it is. Alison played really well, it was very enjoyable out there even though it was tough at times. I felt tactically, we play at quite a similar pace and it was all about who would adapt and inject the pace and play the bigger points. I’m really glad it went my way today.

“I had a niggle in my heel in the middle of the game but overall my body is holding itself.”

[2] Nouran Gohar (EGY) bt [14] Alison Waters (ENG) 3-2: 9-11, 11-6, 8-11, 11-8, 14-12 (67m)

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