Joelle King beats reigning world champ in straight sets to claim Cleveland Classic squash title




Kiwi squash star Joelle King has beaten reigning Egyptian world champion Raneem El Weleily in straight sets to clinch the lucrative Cleveland Classic event, emerging with an 11-8, 11-8, 11-8 win.

Joelle King (L) of New Zealand in action during quarter final of the PSA World Championships in Manchester, United Kingdom on 15 December 2017.
Joelle was defeated 3-0 by Camille Serme.
Copyright photo: PSA Word Tour

Joelle King

Source: Photosport

Ranked ninth in the world, the Waikato-born King proved far too sharp for her top-seeded foe and walked away with $US50,000 ($NZ68,000) in prize money.

She was overjoyed by her victory, saying she was hungrier for the title.

"I had felt a little flat in my last couple of tournaments and I just wanted to play my best squash and see where it took me," King said.

"(Raneem) is someone I've idolised even though we're the same age, she's been someone I've looked up to as she was always so good.

"To come away with a win over someone of that calibre is a great feeling."

Earlier, King had blitzed American seventh seed Amanda Sobhy in straight sets on Sunday (local time) to reach the final.

She's a near-certainty to be named in New Zealand's Commonwealth Games squash team on Wednesday alongside Paul Coll.

Men's star Coll went painfully close to his first PSA World Tour squash title in 15 months this weekend, losing a marathon five-set final to Egyptian top seed Marwan El Shorbagy at the Motor City Open in Detroit.

He went down 11-9, 9-11, 11-8, 8-11, 11-9.

It was a strong response to his demotion in the world rankings earlier in the week, when the 25-year-old slipped four places from ninth to 13th.

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