Egypt, England in final

Egypt, England in final

The Egyptians, with an array of top-10 players in their line-up, had to battle hard for their victory as all the three singles ties were closely fought, especially the crucial women’s tie that World No 11 Raneem El Weleily won in five games against the fifth ranked Rachel Grinham.

Raneem’s win came after World No 2 Ramy Ashour put Egypt ahead by taking the first singles in three games over the top Australian Cameron Pilley (No 12).  Raneem twice came from behind to beat Grinham 4-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-8, 12-10 in 51 minutes to celebrate her first ever win over the 34-year-old, who topped the world rankings for 16 months.

In the ‘dead’ third singles, Karim Darwish, ranked third, overcame a fighting Aaron Frankcomb in three games. The other semifinal was rather tame with Malaysia scoring their only point when Jenny Duncalf conceded her singles to Low Wee Wern when trailing by two games to one following an injury. England were otherwise untroubled as both James Willstrop and Peter Barker won their respective singles.