Karim Abdel Gawad defeats Mohamed ElShorbagy to claim Qatar Classic squash crown
World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad’s stunning 2016/17 season continues to go from strength-to-strength after he put in a superb performance to defeat Mohamed ElShorbagy in the final of the 2016 Qatar Classic - lifting his first World Series title in the process.
The 25-year-old from Egypt has been the man in form over the past few months and triumphed at the PSA Men’s World Championship just a fortnight ago in Cairo to lift the sport’s biggest prize – beating World No1 ElShorbagy in the semi-final, before moving on to overcome Ramy Ashour in the showpiece finale.
Gawad’s 3-0 victory also ensures that he will overtake ElShorbagy at the summit of the 2016/17 PSA Road to Dubai Standings – where only the top eight players will qualify for a place at the season-ending Dubai PSA World Series Finals – after taking the maximum points on offer in Qatar.
“I’m very happy with the way I performed today,” said Gawad.
“For the first time, I was under pressure. When you are a World Champion, people expect you to win and expect that you have a big chance to win. That is a new element I had to integrate into my preparation.
“Being World Champion and Qatar Champion sounds good, really good. I’m living the dream. But next season, I’m aware that I’ll have to make sure I’m very consistent if I want to stay in competition with the top boys.”
ElShorbagy was effusive in his praise of his opponent, saying: “Karim deserves to be the champion, he’s played so well in this first part of the season. It was a great match, and the best player on the day won.”
Result – Final: 2016 Qatar Classic
 Karim Abdel Gawad (EGY) bt  Mohamed ElShorbagy (EGY) 3-0: 12-10, 15-13, 11-7 (67m)