Egypt’s World No. 12 Fares Dessouky dashed the semi-final hopes of the 21-year-old Youssef Ibrahim, who has been one of the tournament’s sensation, at the Qatar Classic after claiming a 3-2 (11-4, 12-14, 11-2, 10-12, 11-5) victory in the last quarter-final match on Thursday.
Playing against his younger opponent for the first time, Dessouky, the winner of the 2020 Pittsburgh Open, ensured that there was no repeat of the highly unexpected upset scripted by the young Ibrahim against the three-time champion and World No.2 Mohamed ElShorbagy. The 26-year-old Alexandria-resident ensured he stood his ground where it mattered most, especially in the deciding game, as he wrapped up the match in 66 minutes.
“It was a very tough match. I saw him playing yesterday against Mohamed, and as I told you after my match, anyone can win. He is playing brilliantly, and he is very talented,” Dessouky said. “Everyone is saying he is the next Amr Shabana and I hope so, for sure. We need a Shabana back on tour. He is a very good player, and he has a bright future on tour.”
Dessouky will next face New Zealand’s Paul Coll, whom he is trailing 1-5 in head-to-head advantage, tomorrow for a chance in the final.
“I have been through a lot. Many people say that mentally, I am not very strong. Today I showed how strong I am. I have been through two surgeries. It is not easy for anyone. The other guys are playing without injuries, and it is not easy to play at this level with injuries I believe in myself, and I will keep going!,” Dessouky added.