Having both won in the month of April, Egypt’s Haya Ali and Yassin Elshafei added another victory to their seasons, with wins at the Hyder Trophy.
The Challenger 10 level competition was held at Equinox in New York City, and it was being held for the first time since 2019. Elshafei came in as the top seed, and having won twice on American soil in his last three tournaments.
The Egyptian had a tough opening test, against Guatemala’s Alejandro Enriquez. He only scraped through in straight games thanks to winning both the first and second games on a tie-break. That was followed by a comfortable victory over compatriot Mohamed Nasser in the quarter finals.
In the semis, he took on Pakistan’s Muhammad Ashab Irfan, and lost the opening game 11-9. He fought back brilliantly to record a win in four games to advance to the final. He took on No.5 seed Daniel Poleshchuk in the final, and went two games up. The Israeli fought back to win the third on a tie-break, but Elshafei regrouped, and won the fourth 11-4 to secure his third title of the season, and his biggest victory on Tour to date.
Joining him in the winners’ circle this week was another Egyptian, in Haya Ali. She came into the competition unseeded, but was in good form having secured her maiden Tour victory last month at the BRESS Breda Open in the Netherlands.
She took out No.8 seed Wen Li Lai in straight games to get her week underway, before then facing two unseeded players. The Egyptian downed Austrian No.1 Jacqueline Peychar in the last eight, before beating American Lucie Stefanoni in the semi-finals.
The final saw Ali take on No.2 seed Akanksha Salunkhe, and after winning the second game no a tie-break 12-10, the Indian held a two-game lead. Ali did not panic though, and after winning the third 11-9, the momentum turned back in her favour. She went on to win the next two games as well to complete a come-from-behind win, and to claim her biggest Tour title to date.
Results: Hyder Trophy
 Yassin Elshafei (EGY) bt  Daniel Poleshchuk (ISR) 3-1: 11-1, 13-11, 11-13, 11-4
Haya Ali (EGY) bt  Akanksha Salunkhe (IND) 3-2: 9-11, 10-12, 11-9, 11-7, 11-6
 Daniel Poleshchuk (ISR) be  Sanjay Jeeva (MAS) 3-0: 11-3, 11-9, 11-6
 Yassin Elshafei (EGY) bt Muhammad Ashab Irfan (PAK) 3-1: 9-11, 11-4, 12-10, 11-8
Haya Ali (EGY) bt Lucie Stefanoni (USA) 3-0: 11-9, 11-8, 11-6
 Akanksha Salunkhe (IND) bt  Diana Garcia (MEX) 3-2: 10-12, 11-9, 9-11, 11-7, 11-7