Amr Mansi, CEO of I-Events and and the man behind El-Gouna International Squash Open, held a press conference on Tuesday to announce the launch of the sixth edition of the El-Gouna tournament and the Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship. The prize money for each championship was set at $150,000 and $165,000 respectively.
El-Gouna Squash Open is one of the seven biggest international squash tournaments, according to its prize money and the points on which international players are ranked.
This is the third time for Egypt to host the Women’s World Championship, the first time for I-Events to organise it, and for El Gouna Egypt to host it. Both championships will start on 5 April and end on the 14th of the same month.
The participants in the game are the top 56 squash players from 20 countries, including Egypt, the UK, France, the Netherlands, Malaysia, India, Pakistan, Germany, Switzerland, Finland, New Zealand, Kuwait, Malta, Italy, and Spain.
Among a notable media coverage, several figures from the world of sports, business, and tourism attended, including head of the Egyptian Tourism Authority, Hisham El-Demery; founder and chairperson of Orascom Development Holding, Naguib Sawiris; executive chairperson and CEO Orascom Telecom Media and Technology Holding, Sameh Sawiris; and head of the Egyptian Squash Association, Assem Khalifa; the most recent world squash champion ranked second internationally, Karim Abdel Gawad; and the most recent world squash female champion ranked first internationally, Nour El-Sherbini.
The importance of this conference lies in Mansi’s belief in the importance of the media to promote squash, promote the fact that Egyptian champions are dominating the sport, and fix Egypt’s image abroad to develop tourism. In this regard, he was grateful that the tournament generates more and more media attention every time it is celebrated.
Both tournaments this year have partnered with Nogoum FM and Nile FM. Their media sponsor is Sports and Fitness Magazine, and their co-sponsors are the Daily News Egypt and Al-Borsa newspapers. Both championships will be aired internationally on more than 30 television channels, including BeIN Sports and Euro Sports.
Confirming the importance of the tournaments for the tourism sector in Egypt, El-Demery pointed out that “our support for both championships comes from our strong belief in their ability to aid in the development of tourism,” adding that “every event related to El-Gouna’s name positively affects tourism.”
For his part, the head of the Egyptian Squash Association believes Egypt has a lot to offer the world of squash. “It is not something new for Egypt to reign in the field of squash as Egyptian players have achieved many international titles, such as Mohamed El-Shorbagy and Nour El-Sherbini last year,” Khalifa said. “The association fully supports the competitions by providing all the facilities needed for each Egyptian player in order to excel in the tournaments.”
Photos by Asmaa Gamal