Philadelphia, October 9: India's Saurav Ghosal went down fighting 5-11, 14-16, 9-11 to Egypt's world No.1 Mohamed El Shorbagy in the third round of the US Open Squash Championships at the glass courts of Drexel University.
Kolkata-born Ghosal, currently playing at a career-high world No.11 ranking, showed some intelligent touches and tested El Shorbagy multiple times throughout the 51-minute encounter, with the pair playing out some entertaining squash inside the Daskalakis Athletic Center.
El Shorbagy, who fell to compatriot Ali Farag in last year's final, dropped just five points in the opening game but was tested by a resurgent Ghosal in the next two games and required a tie-break victory in the second, before he edged the third to complete the win
It was the player from Egypt though who emerged victorious to earn his place in the next round at the expense of Ghosal.
"With Saurav it's always a tough match," said El Shorbagy.
🗣️ Reaction from World No.1 @MoElshorbagy after he came through a tough round three encounter against @SauravGhosal at the @USOpenSquash— PSA World Tour (@PSAWorldTour) October 8, 2018
Read more here 👉 https://t.co/gb45A2r5eC #USOpenSquash #squash pic.twitter.com/FIZrVWlTHs
"Our matches are always very tight and very difficult. He always knows how to move me around the court, so I knew from the first point that I had to be sharp and on my toes and I'm really happy with how I won that crucial second game.
"In the third game he made a comeback and I'm just glad that I closed it out in the end."
The in-form Mohamed Abouelghar stands between El Shorbagy and a place in an eighth successive PSA Tour semifinal after a sublime performance from the world No.9 saw him down fellow Egyptian Karim Abdel Gawad in straight games.
Abouelghar has started the season brilliantly, winning his biggest PSA Tour title last month at the JP Morgan China Open, and he dismantled 2016 world champion Gawad, claiming an 11-8, 11-9, 12-10 margin to earn his place in the last eight.
Results: Men's Third Round
Mohamed ElShorbagy (EGY) bt Saurav Ghosal (IND) 3-0: 11-5, 16-14, 11-9 (51m)
Mohamed Abouelghar (EGY) bt Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 12-10 (43m)
Paul Coll (NZL) bt Omar Mosaad (EGY) 3-0: 11-6, 11-4, 11-1 (34m)
Tarek Momen (EGY) bt Declan James (ENG) 3-1: 5-11, 11-6, 11-4, 11-6 (40m)Mohamed ElShorbagy (EGY) bt Saurav Ghosal (IND) 3-0: 11-5, 16-14, 11-9 (51m)
(With inputs from PSA Media)