United States duo Amanda Sobhy and Todd Harrity made winning starts to the FS Investments U.S. Open Squash Championships as they downed Hong Kong’s Tong Tsz-Wing and Australia’s Cameron Pilley, respectively, on day one of the PSA World Tour Platinum event taking place at Philadelphia’s Drexel University.
Boston-based Sobhy missed out on an appearance at last year’s tournament due to an achilles injury, but she looked eager to make up for lost time in a dominant performance against her opponent today as she powered to an 11-3, 11-9, 11-1 victory in just 24 minutes, and she will take on England’s Victoria Lust in the next round.
“I missed out last year and that was probably one of the lowest times for me and so just to be back here is huge,” said Sobhy afterwards.
“I love this venue. I ended up having to move down to Philly for five weeks during my rehab, so it is like a second home for me now and I know that whenever I’m here I’m in good hands.”
Sobhy was the only one of four female US players to prevail in round one, with her compatriot and tournament wildcard Reeham Sedky falling to capitalise on a two-game lead against Egyptian World No.19 Hania El Hammamy.
Sedky, the World No.68 who currently attends the University of Pennsylvania, was on fire in the opening two games as her hard-hitting style enabled her to catch El Hammamy off guard and she looked destined to earn a second round berth at this tournament for the first time after going 2-0 up.
But she eased off slightly in the third and El Hammamy was able to gain a foothold in the match, with the Egyptian taking the next three games without reply to complete the comeback.
“I had to fight and dig in on every point,” said El Hammamy, who will play France’s Camille Serme next.
“I said I’m not going to give up. I played against her at the end of last season and was 2-0 down and came back to 2-2 but then lost, so I said this time was going to be different and I wasn’t going to let it go."
Elsewhere in the women’s event, United States No.3 Haley Mendez surrendered a one-game advantage against Egypt’s Nadine Shahin, while Olivia Fiechter, the other women’s wildcard, went down against Australia’s Donna Lobban
Second round action gets under way at 12:00 local time (GMT-4) on Sunday October 7, when 2017 winners Ali Farag and Nour El Tayeb begin their tournaments as they aim to replicate the form that saw them become the first married couple in sporting history to lift the same major sports title on the same day last year.
The action will be shown live on SQUASHTV (Rest of World), Eurosport Player (Europe only) and DAZN (Japan).
Results – Women’s First Round: 2018 FS Investments U.S. Open Squash Championships
Joey Chan (HKG) bt Tinne Gilis (BEL) 3-2: 6-11, 8-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-9 (49m)
Zeina Mickawy (EGY) bt Rowan Elaraby (EGY) 3-1: 11-7, 5-11, 11-4, 11-3 (38m)
Nadine Shahin (EGY) bt Haley Mendez (USA) 3-1: 14-16, 11-8, 11-8, 11-5 (41m)
Yathreb Adel (EGY) bt Amanda Landers-Murphy (NZL) 3-0: 11-9, 11-9, 11-9 (28m)
Hania El Hammamy (EGY) bt [WC] Reeham Sedky (USA) 3-2: 2-11, 1-11, 13-11, 12-10, 11-8 (78m)
Fiona Moverley (ENG) bt Lisa Aitken (SCO) 3-2: 11-3, 11-2, 8-11, 8-11, 11-7 (41m)
Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt Tong Tsz-Wing (HKG) 3-0: 11-3, 11-9, 11-1 (24m)
Dipika Pallikal Karthik (IND) bt Danielle Letourneau (CAN) 3-2: 11-6, 11-13, 11-6, 9-11, 11-4 (47m)
Milou van der Heijden (NED) bt Hollie Naughton (CAN) 3-0: 11-8, 11-9, 11-8 (24m)
Mariam Metwally (NED) bt Nikki Todd (CAN) 3-1: 11-9, 9-11, 11-6, 11-3 (30m)
Julianne Courtice (ENG) bt Coline Aumard (FRA) 3-1: 11-8, 8-11, 11-9, 11-7 (48m)
Nada Abbas (BEL) bt Nele Gilis (BEL) 3-2: 3-11, 7-11, 14-12, 11-6, 11-7 (61m)
Millie Tomlinson (ENG) bt Alexandra Fuller (RSA) 3-0: 15-13, 11-8, 11-6 (32m)
Donna Lobban (AUS) bt [WC] Olivia Fiechter (USA) 3-1: 13-11, 11-8, 7-11, 11-6 (38m)
Emily Whitlock (ENG) bt Liu Tsz-Ling (HKG) 3-1: 11-9, 8-11, 11-6, 11-5 (47m)
Rachael Grinham (AUS) bt Ho Tze-Lok (HKG) 3-1: 11-5, 6-11, 14-12, 11-2 (40m)
Draw - Women’s Second Round: To Be Played October 7
 Nour El Sherbini (EGY) v Joey Chan (HKG)
Zeina Mickawy (EGY) v  Alison Waters (ENG)
 Salma Hany (EGY) v Nadine Shahin (EGY)
Yathreb Adel (EGY) v  Nouran Gohar (EGY)
 Camille Serme (FRA) v Hania El Hammamy (EGY)
Fiona Moverley (ENG) v  Annie Au (HKG)
 Victoria Lust (ENG) v Amanda Sobhy (USA)
Dipika Pallikal Karthik (IND) v  Nour El Tayeb (EGY)
 Joelle King (NZL) v Milou van der Heijden (NED)
Mariam Metwally (EGY) v  Tesni Evans (WAL)
 Joshna Chinappa (IND) v Julianne Courtice (ENG)
Nada Abbas (EGY) v  Sarah-Jane Perry (ENG)
 Laura Massaro (ENG) v Millie Tomlinson (ENG)
Donna Lobban (AUS) v  Nicol David (MAS)
 Olivia Blatchford (USA) v Emily Whitlock (ENG)
Rachael Grinham (AUS) v  Raneem El Welily (EGY)