Egypt’s World No.11 Fares Dessouky defeated World Champion Tarek Momen 9-11, 11-5, 11-7, 1-11, 11-7 to reach the CIB Black Ball Open final.
Dessouky will feature in his biggest PSA final to date after taking out World No.3 Momen in five games at the PSA World Tour Gold event taking place at Cairo’s Black Ball Sporting Club.
The 26-year-old had never beaten Momen in their previous three encounters with the most recent one coming at the CIB Egyptian Open in October. However, Dessouky cut a determined figure on court today as he held his nerve to convert in five.
Dessouky started brightly, powering into a 7-3 lead until Momen reigned him back in and was able to take the first game somewhat against the run of play. Dessouky did not let that setback affect him though as he fought back in the second to draw level.
The stop-start nature of the game continued to work in Dessouky’s favour with referee John Massarella being called into action on numerous occasions. That seemed to break up Momen’s momentum and Dessouky was able to use the dead ball to his strengths as he displayed supreme accuracy with his shots to go 2-1 up.
A change of ball in the fourth breathed new life into the match as Momen comfortably put away all of his natural attack to dispel Dessouky quickly for the loss of just one point in a quickfire fourth.
An edgy start to the fifth saw both players conceding some cheap shots, but it was Dessouky who gained a quick four-point lead and from that moment on never allowed his concentration to slip as he powered his way to the finish line, finishing in style with an imperious shot.
He will face World No.1 Ali Farag in tomorrow’s final.
"He is playing incredibly. He is very fast on court so I had to really focus on every single point."
FaresDessouky</a> had to say after reaching a Gold level final for the first time in his career <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BlackBallOpen?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#BlackBallOpen</a> <a href="https://t.co/hMyGUZtzRu">pic.twitter.com/hMyGUZtzRu</a></p>— PSA World Tour (PSAWorldTour) December 17, 2020
“If I want to beat someone like Tarek then I have to play those kind of shots,” said Dessouky afterwards.
“I’m very happy that it worked today very well. There is a lot of ups and downs, especially if you are playing well from the first of the tournament, bit nervous because you don’t want to upset everyone that is coming to watch, so that’s why there were some ups and downs. He’s playing incredibly, he’s very fast on court so I have to really focus on every point. It’s hard to keep my focus until the end of the match in all games, it’s hard.
“I’m very happy to make it to the final, this is my biggest final since I started playing PSA, so I’m really happy to be back and competing again, especially here in Egypt. I was missing playing in front of my friends, family and this amazing crowd.
“I have to recover and make sure my body is in good shape. Tomorrow will be a tough match against Ali, he’s the World No.1 and is in good form so I will try to dig really deep to grab the win.”
 Fares Dessouky (EGY) bt  Tarek Momen (EGY) 3-2: 9-11, 11-5, 11-7, 1-11, 11-7 (75m)