US Squash Open Final Tonight in Downtown Chicago

The US Squash Open in Chicago is taking place tonight at 7pm in Chicago in the picturesque setting on North Michigan Avenue.

The final features the number one seed Ramy Ashour vs. number two seed Amr Shabana.  Both of the Egyptians had little problem advancing through the semifinals.

Shabana dispatched the Englishman James Willstrop with relative ease as he came out strong in the first game soring six points in a row.  Willstrop made a game of it, scoring 8 points but he was unable to solve Shabana’s power and stamina.  The previous night, Willstrop beat Peter Barker in an 81-minute marathon and his fatigue showed as Shabana dominated him in three straight games to win the match.

Ashour faced the Australian David Palmer.  The 33 year-old Palmer played Ashour tight, focusing on a battle of endurance with the Egyptian Ashour, ten years his junior.

Palmer kept it close, but the savvy Ashour wasn’t put off by the hard-hitting Palmer.  Ashour covered the court and deployed his devastating drop shot at key moments to exhaust Palmer.

Tonight’s match should be a good one.  Ashour hasn’t lost a game the entire tournament, while Shabana lost one game to Adrian Martin in the quarterfinals.  It is hard to bet against Ashour–his confidence and youth have been unstoppable.  He has also beat Shabana in recent head-to-head match-ups.