The scene at the VCIB Egyptian Open.

Squash Success: Joel, Elliott Proudly Flying Welsh Flag

Joel Makin and Elliott Morris Devred are causing a stir in highest echelons of World class squash.

Makin, who was born in Haverfordwest and grew up in Aberdare, dumped World number three Tarek Momen out of the CIB Egyptian Squash Open.

While Makin was making his mark in Egypt, fellow Welshman Devred, a 21-year-old who learned his early squash at Cardiff SRC, won the $6,000 Men’s Internazionali D’Italia tournament in Italy.

It was a magnificent squash double for Wales in countries 2,500 kilometres apart.

Devred, who plays for Welsh Wizards in the Premier Squash League, lifted the trophy by beating Austria’s Aqeel Rehman 12-10 in the fifth to complete a cull of three of the top four seeds.

The man from Barry defeated Marc Lopez (Spain) 11-5, 11-8, 9-11, 11-5 and then Marc le Sluis (Netherlands) 11-4, 5-11, 6-11, 11-7, 11-4 in 61 minutes.

Germany’s Yannick Omlor fell to Devred 11-6, 13-11, 11-7 (46 mins) and Yuri Farnetti (Italy) was beaten 13-15, 11-3, 11-9, 10-12, 11-6 (72 mins).

In the final Devred had another long match, beating Rehman 6-11, 13-11, 11-4, 8-11, 12-10 (70 mins).

Fellow Welshman Makin, the 25-year-old World number 12, caused a major upset when he defeated Momen in the second round of the Egyptian Open.

Makin executed his game plan to perfection and nullified Momen’s attacking intent.

The man from Pembrokeshire rallied consistently and his accurate shots frustrated his Egyptian opponent. Makin emerged the winner 11-8, 9-11, 12-10, 11-9 victory in 68 minutes.

“That was massive for me,” said the Welsh number one. “I have had two tight losses to him recently. 

“He played well, is tricky and moves the ball quickly around the court. He is in really consistent form hasn’t really lost to anybody lower down for a while, so that was really big for me.

Welsh champion! Joe Makin won the $6,000 Men’s Internazionali D’Italia tournament in Italy.

“The last few times we have played, maybe I was a bit too passive. I was aware of his attacking options and I just had to go for it a little bit more and attack a bit earlier and not be so afraid of his counters. That paid off.

“I don’t want to come in and lose what is my first match in this tournament. I didn’t feel I was too far off going into it and had a bit of belief. I just had to change a few smaller things and that made a difference, so I was really happy.”

Makin went on to qualify for his first PSA World Tour Platinum semi-final after beating France’s World number 59 Baptiste Masotti in front of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt.

The Welshman then lost in the semi-final against Egypt’s former World number one Karim Abdel Gawad.

Makin and Masotti had never played each other before, but Masotti had beaten World number nine Miguel Rodriguez at his first Platinum event. It was Makin won won 11-3, 12-14, 11-8, 11-2 in just under an hour.

“Baptiste was attacking freely, going in short and the ball was quite dead,” said Makin.

“Credit to him in the middle. During the first two games he was clinical in the middle. 

“The third was crucial. I had to get the length across his backhand and once I did that it took the middle away and I had a few more chances.

“It was about lengthening the rallies out at times, but it was also about setting a pace and getting across the middle to force him back. I was really pleased to pull away in the end.

Welsh squash ace Joel Makin.

“It’s my first semi-final in a Platinum tournament and I had only played one quarter-final before, so it was massive for me.”

Egypt’s former World number one Karim Abdel Gawad secured his place in the final when he defeated Makin 11-8, 11-7, 11-4 in 51 minutes.

“Joel is one of the players who has come up really quick,” said Gawad. “I remember watching him in Qatar three or four years ago and suddenly he is in the top 15 in the world and beating all the top players.

“Last time we played he had to retire through injury and I was 2-0 down. I knew it was going to be a tough match.”

Gawad won the title, beating World number one Ali Farag 11-6, 11-8, 11-8 in just over an hour.

“Playing Ali is always tough for me – he is World number one,” said Gawad.

“He’s always been my competitor since we were seven years old.”

Welsh Wizards are at home to Coolshurst in tyhe Premier Squash League on Tuesday (7.20pm). The match is at the Sport Wales National Centre.

Wizards have nine male players, including three Egyptians, plus players from Spain, Wales and England.

The six women players signed by Wizards include players from India, the Netherlands, Czech Republic, England and Wales.

The next home fixtures for Wizards are against Coolshurst on Tuesday, November 26 and Warwick on Tuesday, January 7.

The format is three men and two women. Tickets for Welsh Wizards next two home fixtures:

Former World number three Marwan ElShorbagy from Egypt met Welsh Wizards’ fans. Marwan plays at number one against Coolshurst on Tuesday.

Tue 26 Nov 2019, 7:20PM


Tue 7 Jan 2020, 7:20PM


Welsh Wizards website –

Wizards squad – men: 

Marwan ElShorbaggy

World ranking: 11 (highest 3)

Born: Alexandria, Egypt

Residence: Bristol, England

University: UWE, Bristol

Age: 26

Omar Mosaad

World ranking: 13 (highest 3)

Born: Cairo, Egypt

Residence: Cairo, Egypt

Club: Heliopoli

Age: 31

Edmon Lopez

World ranking: 59 (highest 54)

Born: Barcelona, Spain

Residence: Barcelona, Spain

Age: 23

Peter Creed

World ranking: 65 (highest 50)

Born: Caerphilly, Wales

Residence: Caerphilly, Wales

University: University of Wales, Cardiff

Club: Rhiwbina SRC

Age: 32

Emyr Evans

World ranking: 114 (highest 112)

Born: Cardiff, Wales

Residence: Cardiff, Wales

Age: 22

Elliott Morris Devred

World ranking: 251 (highest 227)

Born: Birmingham, England

Residence: Barry, Wales

Club: Leamington plus Cardiff SRC

Age: 21

James Peach

World ranking: 228 (highest 223)

Born: Doncaster, England

Resides: Bristol, England

University: UWE, Bristol

Age: 22

Moustafa Asal 

World ranking: 29 (highest 29)

Born: Cairo, Egypt

Resides: Cairo, Egypt

Age: 18

Todd Harrity.

World ranking: 47 (highest 44)

Born: Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania

Resides: Bristol, England

University: Princeton

Age: 29


Tesni Evans

World ranking: 9 (highest 9)

Born: Cardiff, Wales

Resides: Rhyl, Wales

Age: 26

Joshna Chinappa

World ranking: 13 (highest 10)

Born: Chennai, India

Resides: Bristol, England

Age: 33

Rachael Chadwick

World ranking: 53 (highest 53)

Born: Chester, England

Resides:  Chester, England

Club: Neston Cricket Club

Age: 29

Milou van der Heidjen

World ranking: 32 (highest 29)

Born: Veldhoven, Netherlands

Resides: Helmond, Netherlands 

Age: 28

Anna Kimberley

World ranking: 76 (highest 76)

Born: Ipswich, England

Resides: Colchester, Essex

University: Trinity

Age: 24

Anna Serme

World ranking: 66 (highest 63)


Born: Krnov, Czech Republic

Resides: Creteil, France

University: Paris-Sorbonne

Age: 28

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