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Squash - 29. September 2016.

US Star Sobhy Seals Semis Spot in NetSuite Open

Defending champion Amanda Sobhy moved to within one win of a second successive NetSuite Open final after defeating Hong Kong's Joey Chan in straight games in the quarter-final of the PSA W50 tournament held in San Francisco.

The United States No.1, who overcame England’s Sarah-Jane Perry in last year’s final, was in fine fettle throughout the fixture and recorded an 11-3, 12-10, 11-2 victory to reach the last four.

"I’m happy to get off in three today, I can conserve some energy for the semi-finals on Friday," said Sobhy.

"It’s nice to be back here playing and I hope to defend my title and keep it on home soil. [Playing in front of a home crowd] helps tremendously, I love playing at home and having all the supporters around the country rooting for me. 

"It’s amazing and being in San Francisco is great, the crowd is spectacular. There are so many people that I don’t know, but who are here supporting me, the support has been amazing."

Sobhy will go head-to-head with Malaysia’s eight-time World Champion Nicol David in the semi-final after the former World No.1 overcame Egypt’s Nour El Tayeb.

David adopted a high ’T’ position from the outset to cut off El Tayeb’s threat at the front of the court, and went two games up after coming out on top of a series of entertaining rallies.

But the court, which was housed on Justin Herman Plaza, had become slippery throughout the night due to adverse weather conditions and El Tayeb, who had suffered falls on more than one occasion, felt that she couldn’t carry on, bringing a premature end to the fixture.

"There are some patches that may feel a bit funny, but I felt alright on the court," said David.

"It’s just a matter of how comfortable you are after falling, you don’t want to stretch yourself, so it’s not the nicest way to win it. I hope she’s okay and didn’t hurt herself along the way.

"You try your best to do what you can under the circumstances. We’re both going through the same situation, but you just have to see what works for you and make the most of it as much as you can. It’s great to be here in San Francisco, I’m playing here for the first time. I’m looking forward tomorrow, but it’s not the best way to win this match."

Top seed Laura Massaro will join Sobhy and David in the last four after she stormed past compatriot Victoria Lust in her quarter-final fixture.

Massaro, who beat United States No.2 Olivia Blatchford in the previous round, was on the front foot from the outset and powered to the victory by an 11-3, 11-7, 11-9 margin.

"I’m pretty happy with that, as I said yesterday the court conditions are tough being on the back court because the rallies are a little bit longer," said Massaro.

"But I’m happy to be off in three and I’m looking forward to getting on the glass court tomorrow."

New Zealand’s Joelle King was the other player to triumph on day two of the Women’s event and she dispatched Egypt’s Heba El Torky to set up a semi-final clash with Massaro.

In the Men’s PSA M100 tournament, World Champion Gregory Gaultier sealed his place in the last four courtesy of a 3-0 win against Australian No.1 Ryan Cuskelly.

Cuskelly played well in patches, but Gaultier’s unflinching physicality saw him brave the slippery court, taking three games in a row to set up an encounter with Egypt’s Marwan ElShorbagy, who beat Cameron Pilley.

"I was really looking forward to this match, I haven’t played Ryan for a long time," said Gaultier.

"He is really tricky and he has really good hands, so I had to impose my pace and the conditions were cold, so I had to be on my toes with his tricky shots. I tried to stay positive because I’ve had a bit of a nightmare this season with injuries. In my career, I’ve done everything I wanted, so every time I step on court it’s all a bonus."

2016 NetSuite Open - Men’s Quarter-Final Results (Top Half)
[1] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) bt [8] Ryan Cuskelly (AUS) 3-0: 11-6, 11-9, 11-6 (47m)
[4] Marwan ElShorbagy (EGY) bt [7] Cameron Pilley (AUS) 3-1: 11-2, 7-11, 11-5, 11-5 (66m)

2016 NetSuite Open - Men’s Quarter-Final Draw (BottomHalf): To be played on September 29th
[WC] James Willstrop (ENG) v [6] Simon Rösner (GER)
[Q] Diego Elias (PER) v [Q] Gregoire Marche (FRA)

2016 NetSuite Open - Women’s Quarter-Final Results
[1] Laura Massaro (ENG) bt [5] Victoria Lust (ENG) 3-0: 11-3, 11-7, 11-9 (32m)
[4] Joelle King (NZL) bt [8] Heba El Torky (EGY) 3-0: 11-8, 11-4, 11-6 (31m)
[3] Amanda Sobhy (USA) bt [7] Joey Chan (HKG) 3-0: 11-3, 12-10, 11-2 (24m)
[2] Nicol David (MAS) bt [6] Nour El Tayeb (EGY) 3-0: 11-9, 11-6, 7-0 ret. (24m)

2016 NetSuite Open - Women’s Semi-Final Draw (Top Half): To be played on September 29th
[1] Laura Massaro (ENG) v [4] Joelle King (NZL)

2016 NetSuite Open - Women’s Semi-Final Draw (Bottom Half): To be played on September 30th
[3] Amanda Sobhy (USA) v [2] Nicol David (MAS)

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