Team USA will have three representatives in the PSA World Championships presented by the Walter Family round of sixteen for the first time courtesy of second round wins from Olivia Fiechter, Olivia Blatchford Clyne and Amanda Sobhy Friday, July 16 at the University Club of Chicago.
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Blatchford Clyne, world No. 13, was the first to progress with a four-game win on the traditional court 3 against Malaysia’s Low Wee Wern, which sent the twenty-eight-year-old into her first career World Championship third round in her fourth career appearance.
“I was really happy to get through, Wee Wern’s an incredible player and she’s been at the very top of the game,” Blatchford Clyne said. “I knew it was going to be hard, I was hoping it wasn’t going to be that hard, but of course it was. I was just happy with the way I was able to regroup, I found myself at quite a deficit in the third, and I fought hard to get back and I was really pleased with myself that I managed to finish off the game.”
Blatchford Clyne will make her third round debut against France’s world No. 3 Camille Serme on the glass court Sunday, July 18, at 5pm CT, 6pm ET.
“I’m expecting for this [match against Serme] to be very hard, very long and grueling,” Blatchford Clyne said. “She’s a fantastic player, she’s playing fantastic squash right now, and I’m going to try and sink my teeth in and hold on for dear life.”
Olivia Fiechter, world No. 20, recorded a top twenty upset over world No. 17 Tinne Gilis in four games and fifty-seven minutes to reach her first career world championship third round in her second tournament appearance.
“From the very beginning it was a battle,” Fiechter said. “Our rankings are very tight, and I think we both knew there was a lot on the line. It’s the first time I’ve ever gotten to the second round of the World Championships, so to make it to the last sixteen means so much. There were definitely some nerves out there, but as the match went on I think my length improved. Tinne’s an incredible competitor, she covers the court so well, so I just tried to keep a high ’T’ position and tried to find my targets and tried to stay patience. I was able to do that in the big rallies at the end of those tight games and I’m so excited to walk away having won the match.”
Fiechter will face Egypt’s world No. 1 and two time defending champion Nour El Sherbini Friday at 5pm CT, 6pm ET.
“I’m so excited, I can’t wait to be back on the glass,” Fiechter said. “I was lucky enough to play the first round on the glass, and I had some friends from the area come to support me. It’s been a while since I’ve played a major on home soil, and it’s always a bit more exciting for the players when we have some friends and family in the crowd. I’ve never been on court with Nour El Sherbini and it’s an opportunity that we all dream about when we go pro. I’m going to go out there and play my heart out.”
Amanda Sobhy, world No. 7, completed the historic slate of results for Team USA with a comprehensive three-game win over Egypt’s Nada Abbas on the glass court. Sobhy now takes on Canada’s Hollie Naughton Friday night at 7:15pm CT, 8:15pm ET.
“Three of us in the round of 16 is amazing, unfortunately my sister [Sabrina] had a tough loss, but it’s coming soon,” Sobhy said. “Us four girls are together, training together, we keep pushing each other and we will keep doing well. I am so happy to be playing on home soil, this is an atmosphere I love, it’s USA all day baby. I got better with each game, which is how I wanted to progress. The first game was tight, but I want to keep finding my length and get some rallies. I settled in and with each game, I went for it more and more and got more confident in my shots, and I am pleased with how it ended.”