MCO Final: Elshorbagy outlasts Barker in five-game epic

Elshorbagy found his range in Game Three. MCO photo
Elshorbagy found his range in Game Three. MCO photo

Elshorbagy found his range in Game Three. MCO photo

Top-seed storms back from two games down, takes second MCO title
by James Hawkins

Bloomfield Hills, Mich. — Entering this year’s 15th Motor City Open presented by The Suburban Collection, only one player had won it twice — retired Canadian squash legend Jonathon Power. Egyptian World #4 Mohamed Elshorbagy added his name to that short list Tuesday night after rallying from behind to defeat World #8 Peter Barker in an epic, five-game championship match: 8-11, 12-14, 11-4, 11-6, 11-7.

For his efforts Elshorbagy won $11,000 in prize money and a $9,000 Rolex Oyster Perpetual watch — courtesy of Greenstone’s Jewelers.

“I’m happy to win my second Rolex now,” said 23-year-old Elshorbagy, who also won the MCO in 2011. “It’s an amazing feeling knowing the only other player who has won this tournament twice is Jonathon Power. It’s such an honor to put my name up there with him.”

After two games before a standing room only crowd at the Birmingham Athletic Club, however, it appeared Barker might be crowned the new champion. The Englishman’s short game was working to perfection and his dogged defensive retrievals were stifling Elshorbagy’s offense. It didn’t help that Elshorbagy struggled with his stroke, tinning four shots in Game One and five more in the second – twice when he had game ball. Read more →

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