The "2023 TTI Milwaukee Hong Kong Squash Open" is well underway at the Hong Kong Squash Centre. Round 3 with eight matches from the top half of the draws staged today at the Hong Kong Squash Centre. Hong Kong, China player Chan Sin Yuk Simmi fought fiercely and narrowly lost 2-3 to the World No.1 player and Women's top seed, Nour ElSherbini. While the Women’s’ 9/16 seed Japanese Satomi Watanabe surprisingly upset the No.7 seed, Salma Hany from Egypt.
The 21-year-old unseeded player Chan Sin Yuk Simmi made an impressive debut in this year's Hong Kong Open, defeating two 17/32 seeded players, including her teammate Ho Tze Lok Tomato and England's Jasmine Hutton in the first two rounds. Simmi faced the world's No. 1 and top seed of the women's event, Egyptian Nour ElSherbini in Round 3 today. Simmi was on-fired with the support from the home crowd. Although losing the first two games 4-11 and 3-11, Simmi fought back in the third game, then saved three match points and took the set with 12-10. She kept her momentum to win the fourth set 12-10 and tied the match in 2-2. Although Simmi eventually lost the crucial fifth set with a score of 7-11, she also earned lots of applause from the home audiences.
Simmi shared that she felt nervous at the start of the match, "I had previously played against the World's second-ranked player and lost quickly. I know there were many spectators who came to support me, I didn't want to lose quickly like last time, however, when I worried about it, it happened." She mentioned she tried to make herself more focused and stopped overthinking from the third game, which helped her to perform better. To sum up this journey, she still thought that playing against the top player would be a valuable experience for her.
In addition to Nour ElSherbini, third seed American Amanda Sobhy and sixth seed Belgian Tinne Gilis both easily defeated their opponents in straight sets. Meanwhile, 9/16 seed Japan's Satomi Watanabe surprisingly upset No.7 seed, Egypt's Salma Hany by 3-1 (12-14, 11-6, 11-7, 11-6) and reached the semifinals of the Hong Kong Open for two consecutive years.
In the men's event, defending champion and third seed, Egypt's Mostafa Asal, faced his compatriot, 9/16 seed Youssef Soliman, in Round 3 today. After losing the opening game by 11-13, Asal adjusted himself and came back to win the next three games with scores of 11-6, 11-2, and 11-5, to secure a 3-1 victory after 62 minutes. Asal mentioned that he didn't start well but was happy to find his rhythm and lead to the win. He also expressed his excitement about competing for the title in the Hong Kong Open again, stating, "The Hong Kong Open is a fantastic tournament, and the people here are friendly. I always enjoy playing in front of the Hong Kong audience. Of course, as the defending champion, there is added pressure, but it's part of professional squash."
The other three seeded players, both from Egypt, including first seed Ali Farag, No. 6 seed Mazen Hesham, and No.8 seed Tarek Momen have also advanced to the Quarterfinals. The bottom half of the Round 3 matches will take place at the Hong Kong Squash Centre tomorrow.