Rising Egyptian squash star Mohamed Elshorbagy says he is relishing the prospect of returning to PSA World Series action when the 2014 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions gets underway in New York’s Grand Central Terminal next week.
After winning the 2013 Qatar Classic in November, his maiden World Series title, Elshorbagy was forced to take three weeks out after suffering a back injury during an epic 122-minute battle against James Willstrop at the Hong Kong Open in December.
Now fully recovered, the 22-year-old player from Alexandria is hoping to get off to a flying start in 2014.
“I’m very excited to be playing at the Tournament of Champions,” said Elshorbagy.
“It is one of my favourite tournaments of the year and I love playing there. From the very first game in the first round the venue is always packed and it creates a really special atmosphere to play squash in.
“It’s also a very well run tournament and the organisation is superb. That environment also helps you to perform at your best which is great for the players.
“I’m especially excited because I suffered a back injury at the end of 2013 which kept me out for a few weeks but I’m fully recovered now and hungry to do well.
“It was very frustrating for me but I made sure I took care of the injury properly and I played in the English PSL earlier this week and I felt good, so I’m really looking forward to going to New York now.”
Having reached the quarter-final stage at the Tournament of Champions in each of the past three years, Elshorbagy is hoping to build on his past performances in 2014, but he says he can’t take anything for granted:
“It would be a dream for me to win there,” said the World No.4.
“All the players will be fresh going into this event as we’ve all had a few weeks off so if I could win, by beating the players when they’re all at their best, that would mean a lot to me.
“I’m concentrating on my first round game first though and I’ll focus on doing my best in that game before thinking about anything else.
“I will do my best and then I will see how far I can go.”