Nick Matthew To Face Fares Dessouky In Canary Wharf Classic Final
by Nathan Clarke

photos PSA

March 9, 2017 - England's Nick Matthew used all of his big match experience and unquestioned class to stop the run of New Zealand's Paul Coll at the 2017 Canary Wharf Classic and come through their semi-final encounter in straight games to book a place in tomorrow's final - where he will be aiming to win the title for a record sixth time inside London's East Wintergarden.

Up against the in-form World No.16 Matthew produced a masterclass performance, picking his shots and bossing the court with precise placement from the off to secure a 11-9, 11-8, 11-5 win that sees him through to meet Egypt's Fares Dessouky in the title-decider.

"Sometimes the scoreline doesn't tell the story and tonight was very tough - especially the first two games," said 36-year-old Matthew, who will be hoping to collect his 37th PSA World Tour title.

"I think maybe a bit of experience came in there and I just managed to keep him at bay. If anyone can come back from 2-0 down I know it's him so I'm happy with how I played and I feel like there's still plenty left to come - which is a great feeling to have ahead of a big match tomorrow. 

"I missed this tournament last year and it's only with hindsight that I realised how much I enjoy it here. It's the best crowd on Tour and I think 'Friday Night Finals Night' at Canary Wharf is one of the best stages on Tour.

"The crowd are great and they can have a few drinks tomorrow night without worrying about work, so it's very special atmosphere, I'm looking forward to playing in it."

22-year-old Dessouky secured his place in the final, in what will be the biggest match of his career to date, after coming through a scrappy five-game affair with Spain's Borja Golan that was littered with over 50 refereeing decisions.

Dessouky won 12-10, 15-17, 13-11, 11-13, 11-5 after 124 minutes - the third longest match in the events history.

"It was a pretty long match and I was starting to cramp towards the end, so I'm very happy to be through," said Dessouki.

"It was a very hard match mentally. There was lots of talking and we were struggling with each others movement. I am glad I am through, I'm really happy to be in the final.

"It is a great achievement for me and Nick is one of the legends of the sport. I've watched him since I was young and dreamed of playing him in big matches -  I will do what I do every day to recover and hopefully I can come here tomorrow and play my best and make the crowd proud."

Results - Semi-finals: 2017 Canary Wharf Classic
[1] Nick Matthew (ENG) bt Paul Coll (NZL) 3-0: 11-9, 11-8, 11-5 (55m)
[4] Fares Dessouky (EGY) bt [7] Borja Golan (ESP) 3-2: 12-10, 15-17, 13-11, 11-13, 11-5 (124m)

Draw - Final
[1] Nick Matthew (ENG) v [4] Fares Dessouky (EGY)