The Egyptian Squash Federation issued a statement saying it fully respects Mohamed El-Shorbagy’s decision to switch allegiances to England but questioned the suggestion that he was not supported sufficiently by the authorities in his home country, the BBC have reported.
El-Shorbagy, one of the world’s best squash players, said in an interview with BBC Arabic that he made the decision to represent England because of the support he would receive, contrasting that with what he described as a “lack of appreciation” when he was representing Egypt.
However, the Egyptian Squash Federation said in its statement that it had provided the player with plenty of encouragement and financial rewards in his career and that the Egyptian sports authorities supported the player “within the limits of the state’s capabilities.”
El-Shorbagy, currently ranked third in the world, has won 44 titles in his career and for a long time had been at the top of the international players’ rankings.
Now 31, he has lived in England since he was 15 and was crowned world champion in 2017. He is also a three-time British Open winner.
“I’m really excited to be representing England now,” El-Shorbagy told BBC Sport after he made the switch. “I’ve lived in England more than half my life and have been trained by British coaches.”