CAIRO, June 30, 2009 - Nour El Sherbini, the
13-year-old Egyptian who made history by becoming
the youngest player ever to reach the final of a
WISPA World Tour squash event, almost claimed a
further record when she took experienced compatriot
Engy Kheirallah to a fifth game decider in the
climax of the ATCO Miro Classic No1 at the National
Squash Stadium in the Egyptian capital Cairo.
Kheirallah, the 27-year-old top seed ranked 22 in
the world, took the opening two games against her
novice opponent - ranked more than 140 places lower.
But El Sherbini - unseeded and undaunted, and
competing in only her third Tour event - battled
back to draw level.
The favourite pulled ahead 7-1 in the fifth - but
the never-say-die youngster again fought back to
lead 8-7. But former world No12 Kheirallah kept her
composure and regained the lead before winning 11-8,
11-9, 7-11, 7-11, 11-7 in a dramatic encounter which
lasted well over one hour.
"I'm so glad I got that start in the fifth, I
wouldn't have won without it," explained the
relieved winner to www.squashsite.co.uk afterwards.
"After I got to 7-1, I was rushing to finish it -
but these juniors, they have no pressure: they just
go on playing until the end!
"She's such a good player, one of the best under-nineteens
in the world already. You really can't call her a
junior any more playing like that, she doesn't play
"She played really well in the third and fourth. I
lost concentration a little and panicked after a few
calls went against me - but in the end I'm happy to
get away with that one."
It was Kheirallah's second Tour final appearance on
home soil in two months - but her first title
triumph since November 2005.
 Engy Kheirallah (EGY) bt Nour El Sherbini (EGY)
11-8, 11-9, 7-11, 7-11, 11-7
 Engy Kheirallah (EGY) bt  Amanda Sobhy (USA)
11-5, 11-6, 11-4 (20m)
Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt  Kanzy Emad El-Defrawy
(EGY) 12-10, 11-6, 11-6 (45m)
 Engy Kheirallah (EGY) bt Nour Bahgat (EGY) 11-7,
 Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt  Lucie Fialova (CZE)
11-7, 4-11, 11-4, 11-4
 Kanzy Emad El-Defrawy (EGY) bt [Q] Yathreb Adel
(EGY) 11-8, 8-11, 11-7, 11-5
Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt  Linda Hruzikova (SVK)
11-5, 11-2, 11-4
 Engy Kheirallah (EGY) bt [Q] Haidi Lala (EGY)
11-4, 11-4, 11-4
Nour Bahgat (EGY) bt  Milou van der Heijden (NED)
11-8, 11-4, 11-3
 Lucie Fialova (CZE) bt Salma Hany (EGY) 11-8,
 Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Salma Nassar (EGY) 11-6,
9-11, 11-6, 11-6
[Q] Yathreb Adel (EGY) bt  Olivia Blatchford
(USA) 11-8, 11-8, 12-10
 Kanzy Emad El-Defrawy (EGY) bt Merhan Amr
Mahmoud (EGY) 4-11, 11-1, 11-7, 11-3
 Linda Hruzikova (SVK) bt Farah Abdel Meguid (EGY)
11-6, 11-4, 11-5
Nour El Sherbini (EGY) bt  Heba El Torky (EGY)
11-9, 11-7, 11-6