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CIB Black Ball Open RD1: Momen Through to Last 16

Reigning World Champion Tarek Momen came from a game down against USA’s Todd Harrity to win 9-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-2 and secure his place in the CIB Black Ball Open last 16.

The Egyptian found his loose shots costing him in the first as World No.58 Harrity took the initiative to find himself with five game balls. Momen came back well though, saving four before the American, who was a late replacement into the draw, took the lead.

That spell at the end of the first served Momen well as he was able to build on that and create a momentum, taking the next two games comfortably before powering to the finish line in the fourth for the loss of just two points.

The World No.3 will face compatriot Mazen Hesham for a place in the quarter finals.

“I’m quite happy with that performance,” Momen told the SquashTV cameras afterwards.

“It’s always tough to play a first match after a while. With Todd it’s extra difficult because we have been training together for the last three or fourth months now. He’s spent most of his time in Cairo, he was training with my coach and we used to do a lot of drills and play practice matches together, so it was difficult to play a real match.

“I think overall I’m quite happy with the performance. There were far too many errors at the beginning, which is something I really didn’t want to do. I’ve been starting slow this season in most of my matches and I wanted to cut that out, so I was hoping to get in a few long rallies at the beginning of the match and I tried to do that for the first four or five points. Then, I just did what I know best and started to attack the front and it didn’t work. I made a few errors in the first that proved crucial, I came from 10-5 down but couldn’t convert at 9-10 but from then on, I upped my level, maybe a few errors in the second but in the third and fourth – it was pretty good. My length and movement was good, so I’m happy with the match overall.

“Mazen is one of the few players who I tried to change the way I play against them. I try to be more conservative than I am against more players. He goes for so many shots and when he’s on he just hits nick after nick and it’s so hard to retrieve those shots. I’ll be on my toes and prepare myself to the best of my abilities and hopefully it will be an exciting match for everyone.”

[2] Tarek Momen (EGY) bt Todd Harrity (USA) 3-1: 9-11, 11-5, 11-5, 11-2 (36m)

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