India bow out losing tamely to Egypt

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Chennai, Dec 10 (UNI) After pulling off a sensational upset victory over Wales to enter the quarter-finals for the first time, India were outplayed 0-3 by top seeded and favourites Egypt in the 21st ICL World Men's team squash championship here today.

Regining champions England white-washed Netherlands by a similar 3-0 margin in another quarter-finals to make it to the last four stagem along with Egypt.

Egypt cantered home even without their number two Karim Darwish, who was injured. Their number three player Wael Elherdi put it across India's number two Ritwik Bhattacharya 13-11, 11-4, 11-8 in a match full of drama as both questioned many 'let' and 'stroke' penalties against them throughout the match, more so Elherdi.

But, the wily Egyptian pulled off well the big points under pressure even as Ritwik's cross courts caught him napping at times.

In the second singles, world number one left hander Amr Shabana, playing percentage squash from the word go, was stretched a bit by India's number one Saurav Ghosal before winning 11-5, 11-8, 11-9.

With some charectaristic drops and forehand cross courts, Saurav put Amr to some difficulty in the third game, snapping at the Egyptian's heels till 9-11.

Amr, however, had a good word for Saurav whom he said had the potential to emerge among the top 20 if he takes his squash seriously in future.

''He and Ritwik are good,'' Amr said.

Siddharth Suchdev then yielded without much resistance to Mohammed Abbas, Egypt's fourth ranked player, 6-11, 8-11.

Coach Cyrus Poncha was not disillusioned with India's defeat.

''Both Ritwik and Saurav put up a good show. The matches would serve as very good exposure to our top players,'' he observed after the match.


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