Daniel Mekbib reaches quarter-finals of PSA Louisville Squash Open 2023

September 27 2023

Daniel Mekbib was denied a place in the quarter-finals of the Louisville Squash Open 2023 in Kentucky by 4th seed Faraz Khan of the USA.

Following straight-game wins over Macéo Lévy and Christopher Gordon in the first two rounds, Daniel again showed impressive form to take the first game of his quarter-final, before the fourth seeded America eventually wrestled the initiative to close-out a hard-fought 9-11 11-7 11-7 11-3 victory in 48 minutes.

Danile Mekbib, who entered the match with confidence after defeating the eighth seed, Christopher Gordon, in the previous round, started strong by taking the first game 11-9. However, Faraz Khan steadily worked his way into the match, claiming the second and third games with scores of 11-7, before claiming the fourth game 11-3 to advance to the semi-finals.

Colombian Juan Camilo Vargas, currently ranked World.No.59, delivered the performance of the day by defeating the tournament's top seed Leonel Cardenas, showing his resilience and determination in a thrilling five-game battle that lasted 74 intense minutes.

Despite Leonel Cardenas taking the first game in a nail-biting 13-11 tie-breaker, Vargas secured the second game 11-8 and then dominated the third game with a commanding 11-3 victory. The match took a dramatic turn as Vargas fought back, claiming the fourth game 11-8, setting the stage for an electrifying deciding game. In the end, Vargas emerged victorious 11-7, earning himself a well-deserved spot in the semi-finals.

Next up for Vargas is a showdown with the tournament's third seed, Leandro Romiglio of Argentina, who overcame Portugal's Rui Soares in a four-game battle. Romiglio got off to a strong start, securing the opening two games 11-5 11-9. However, Rui Soares mounted a resilient challenge by taking the third game. The fourth game was closely contested, but Romiglio ultimately sealed the match, winning the game 11-9, to earn his place in the semi-finals.

In another quarter-final clash, American second seed Timothy Brownell displayed his dominance by defeating the seventh seed, Ibrahim Elkabbani, with a commanding 11-5 11-9 11-7 win. Brownell continued his impressive form from the previous round, where he bested New Zealand's Lwamba Chileshe. He looked in control throughout the quarter-final match, requiring only 35 minutes to secure the victory.

Brownell's semi-final opponent will be fellow American Faraz Khan, the tournament's fourth seed.

Louisville Squash Open 2023, Louisville Boatclub, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Men’s Quarter-Finals:
[6] Juan Camilo Vargas (COL) bt [1] Leonel Cardenas (MEX) 13-11, 8-11, 3-11, 11-8, 11-7 (74m)
[3] Leandro Romiglio (ARG) bt [5] Rui Soares (POR) 11-5, 11-9, 5-11, 11-9 (65m)
[4] Faraz Khan (USA) bt [9/16] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) 9-11, 11-7, 11-7, 11-3 (48m)
[2] Timothy Brownell (USA) bt [7] Ibrahim Elkabbani (EGY) 11-5, 11-9, 11-7 (35m)

Daniel Mekbib of the Czech Republic will face 4th seed Faraz Khan of the USA in the quarter-finals of the Louisville Squash Open 2023 in Kentucky, USA following impressive straight-game wins over Macéo Lévy of France and Christopher Gordon of the USA in his opening two matches at the Louisville Boatclub.

Fellow UNSQUASHABLE players Lwamba Chileshe and Temwa Chileshe both scored registered wins on the opening day of the championship before being beaten in the 2nd round.

Daniel Mekbib needed just 31-minutes to beat Macéo Lévy 11-6 11-4 11-6 in the 1st round, followed a 12-10 11-7 11-4 win over former USA No.1 and PSA Tour veteran Christopher Gordon in 33 minutes.

Louisville Squash Open 2023, Louisville Boatclub, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Men’s 2nd Round:
[1] Leonel Cardenas (MEX) bt Veer Chotrani (IND) 6-11, 12-10, 4-11, 11-9, 11-4 (62m)
[6] Juan Camilo Vargas (COL) bt [9/16] Temwa Chileshe (NZL) 11-6, 11-8, 11-6 (32m)
[5] Rui Soares (POR) bt [9/16] Edwin Clain (FRA) 11-3, 4-11, 11-5, 11-8 (42m)
[3] Leandro Romiglio (ARG) bt [9/16] Aly Hussein (EGY) 6-11, 4-11, 13-11, 11-8, 11-3 (95m)
[4] Faraz Khan (USA) bt [9/16] Sanjay Jeeva (MAS) 7-11, 9-11, 13-11, 11-7, 11-6 (63m)
[9/16] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) bt [8] Christopher Gordon (USA) 12-10, 11-7, 11-4 (33m)
[7] Ibrahim Elkabbani (EGY) bt [9/16] Andrés Herrera (COL) 2-11, 11-7, 11-6, 8-11, 11-7 (70m)
[2] Timothy Brownell (USA) bt [9/16] Lwamba Chileshe (NZL) 11-9, 11-6, 11-6 (34m)

New Zealand's Chileshe brothers, Lwamba Chileshe and Temwa Chileshe, both scored notable wins on the opening day of the Louisville Squash Open 2023 being staged at the Louisville Boatclub, Louisville, Kentucky, USA.

Matias Knudsen's impressive winning streak met its end on the opening day of the tournament. Knudsen arrived at this event on the heels of a triumphant performance at the I SPAC Squash Open, clinching his third consecutive tournament victory. However, his journey was marred by a troublesome knee injury during his round-one match against France's Edwin Clain, resulting in a swift 3-0 defeat.

Edwin Clain will now play Portugal's fifth-seeded Rui Soares in a quest for a spot in the quarter-finals. Their impending showdown holds added intrigue as it marks their maiden encounter on the Professional Squash Association (PSA) World Tour.

For the top seed, Leonel Cardenas, and the second seed, Timothy Brownell, the path to round two has been illuminated, as both their opponents secured four-game victories on the tournament's opening day.

Leonel Cardenas is set to square off against India's Veer Chotrani, who vanquished Pakistan's Muhammad Ashab Irfan in a hard-fought battle. Meanwhile, Brownell commences his title defence against New Zealand's formidable Lwamba Chileshe.

Chileshe's journey in Louisville presents an interesting trend, as he finds himself pitted against American opponents for the fourth consecutive time. Prior to his match against Brownell, he faced off against Spencer Lovejoy and Dillon Huang in his last two tournaments before triumphing over Jamie Ruggiero in the first round here.

Notably, Huang faced a challenge of his own, encountering Chileshe's younger sibling, Temwa, who secured victory and, in doing so, earned a second-round clash with Juan Camilo Vargas.

The Louisville Open promises more gripping squash action as the competition unfolds, with notable upsets and intriguing match-ups already capturing the attention of fans and players alike.

Louisville Squash Open 2023, Louisville Boatclub, Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Men’s 1st Round:
[1] Leonel Cardenas (MEX) bye
Veer Chotrani (IND) bt [9/16] Muhammad Ashab Irfan (PAK) 11-7, 7-11, 11-9, 13-11 (49m)
[9/16] Temwa Chileshe (NZL) bt Dillon Huang (USA) 11-8, 11-8, 11-3
[6] Juan Camilo Vargas (COL) bye
[5] Rui Soares (POR) bye
[9/16] Edwin Clain (FRA) bt Matias Knudsen (COL) 11-2, 11-6, 11-8 (25m)
[9/16] Aly Hussein (EGY) bt [WC] Matias Lacroix Nova (CHI) 11-9, 11-9, 11-9 (38m)
[3] Leandro Romiglio (ARG) bye
[4] Faraz Khan (USA) bye
[9/16] Sanjay Jeeva (MAS) bt Nicolas Serna (COL) 13-11, 11-6, 11-8 (38m)
[9/16] Daniel Mekbib (CZE) bt Macéo Lévy (FRA) 11-6, 11-4, 11-6 (31m)
[8] Christopher Gordon (USA) bye
[7] Ibrahim Elkabbani (EGY) bye
[9/16] Andrés Herrera (COL) bt Juan Hernandez (COL) 11-2, 11-6, 11-6 (26m)
[9/16] Lwamba Chileshe (NZL) bt Jamie Ruggiero (USA) 6-11, 12-10, 11-7, 11-7 (44m)
[2] Timothy Brownell (USA) bye