Amanda Sobhy Dominates Salma Hany to Capture Her First Major PSA Title

[Amanda Sobhy (r) owned the middle of the court against Salma Hany]

September 27, 2021

With steam emanating from her forehead, American Amanda Sobhy was beaming—and steaming—as the 2021 Oracle NetSuite Open champion. For Sobhy, it’s her second win in San Francisco, but it meant so much more.

“If I cry, it’s because it’s been an emotional week,” said Sobhy holding back tears. “I’ve never won a major title. To come back after winning it in 2015, and now to win it at a Gold level? To win my first major on home soil, it just means so much.”

And it really didn’t look as difficult as Sobhy probably thought. Not only did she dominate her three early rounds, she did again tonight when the final switched back to a traditional best-of-five games format. Egypt’s Salma Hany just could not find a way out of the back corners. Festivities on finals night were delayed by an hour, due to rain that came out of nowhere late in the afternoon, and the temperatures were significantly warmer than the previous four nights, but the court still took length when played with precision. And Sobhy was precise from the start.

Sobhy stepped up in the court at every opportunity and rarely allowed balls hit by Hany to get all the way to the back wall. Generally, Sobhy was volleying the ball at, or forward of, the service box. The dividends from that were huge because it took time away from Hany who was desperately trying to send the ball to the depths of the court.

Afterwards, when asked if she would be rooting on fellow Harvard University alum Ali Farag of Egypt, who was due up next to play New Zealand’s Paul Coll in the men’s final, Sobhy was more introspective about the college squash game overall.

“For years people felt that playing college squash would be detrimental to a players’ development. I think it’s a testament to all of us college squash players doing well. It shows that it’s possible.”

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