Team USA upset three seeds Malaysia to place fifth at the WSF Women’s World Team Championships for the second consecutive edition of the biennial tournament Saturday morning at Palais des Sports in Paris, France.
Victories from world No. 7 Amanda Sobhy and University of Pennsylvania sophomore Reeham Sedky secured fifth place in what was the highest seeded upset by Team USA in tournament history. The U.S. entered the 2016 competition seeded seventh.
In what was her fifth win of the tournament, Sobhy ended world No. 6 Nicol David’s incredible 38-match Women’s World Team unbeaten run that stretched back to 2004.
Both players traded games until Sobhy clinched the fifth game 11-6, 5-11, 11-7, 6-11, 11-9 after fifty-three minutes to give the U.S. a 1-0 lead.
“Amanda was suffering from the tremendous pace that Nicol has, said Thierry Lincou, U.S. National Coach. “She had to step back and put up another game and just take one point at a time, there was such mental effort involved. Even though she was feeling it physically, she had to be smart enough and be clear in her head to push through and to choose the right shots.”
Sobhy’s victory over David marks her second tournament win over a higher-ranked player in addition to defeating world No. 2 Laura Massaro in the pool stages.
“I just told myself that I needed to be ahead by a point, but I had two lucky bounces and that was my early Christmas present, ” Sobhy said. “I was so happy. Nicol is so tough mentally. Every time you play her you know that you are going to have a tough battle with her. She gives everything. I just told myself to hang in there.”
Sedky followed on against world No. 17 Delia Arnold, and the nineteen-year-old’s second five-gamer of the tournament ensued. After seventy-seven minutes, Sedky came back from a game down at 2-1, to bounce back and win 11-8 in the fifth sealing fifth place for Team USA.
Both teams agreed to play the dead rubber match, in which Rachel Arnold defeated Sabrina Sobhy 11-6, 11-9, 11-6.
The result matches Team USA’s highest senior world team finish in history, which was first achieved two years ago in Canada.
“I’m kind of speechless, ” Sedky said. “There are some amazing people here. I put in everything that I’ve got on court. I think it showed all the hard work I’ve put in. I love just being with the team, it’s so nice. We are so close to each other. It’s a great tournament. Thierry is an amazing coach. He knows exactly what to tell you between games. We were seeded seventh so we have exceeded our expectations.”
For more reports, images and more information visit the WSF Women’s World Team Championship official website.