Houston Open 2022 : FINAL
 Ali Farag (Egy) 3-1  Mazen Hesham (Egy) 11-6, 8-11, 11-7, 11-3 (50m)
Egypt’s World No.1 Ali Farag started the year in the best possible fashion, as he got the better of compatriot Mazen Hesham in four games to claim the first silverware on oView Postffer in 2022, winning the PSA Gold level Houston Open in Texas.
It was the tenth contest between the Egyptian duo on the PSA World Tour, with Farag having won eight of the previous nine, including their last six meetings. Hesham’s only success over his fellow countryman came back in 2015, in the quarter finals of the Qatar Classic.
Farag started strongly, aiming to keep that good run going, and although ‘the Falcon’ was able to level the first at 6-6, a quick burst gave the two-time World Champion the edge, and he took it 11-6 to lead. However, that Hesham fought back in the second, and although he saw the World No.1 save three game balls, he was eventually able to convert it 11-8 to level the match.
It continued to be a struggle for Farag early on in the third, but he weathered the storm, and then managed to get back on the front foot of the middle part of the game and he established his dominance once more.
That continued into the fourth, where the World No.1 was able to run away with it in the end, cruising to victory after 50 minutes of action. Farag secured his 25th title on the PSA World Tour, and the first Gold level title in Houston.
“I don’t think I necessarily started shakily, as much I get edgy playing Mazen because of how skilful he is,” Farag said after the match. You’re always on your toes, you don’t know what to expect in the next shot, I don’t think he knows what to expect it, and that is how skilful he is. It makes you very edgy and as much as I am happy about this win, I am extremely happy for Mazen as well.
“Mazen and I actually started out on Tour together and I was looking up to him when we first started and he made it to the semi-finals of a Platinum event at a very young age and he has been unlucky a lot of niggles, a lot of injuries. He has been battling hard, I see him every day in training, we share a lot of things together and finally, he is where he deserves, and it is only going to get better for him, so I am extremely happy for Mazen, for sure!
“We share the same club, Wadi Degla, as we like to call it, the ‘Community of Champions’. We share the same sponsor, Expression Networks, and most of all, we share a great friendship …….