KARACHI - Amr Shabana is the only Egyptian to clinch a semi-final spot in the World Squash Championship now in progress at Al Khobar (Saudi Arabia) when he defeated Gregory Gaultier of France in a 57-minute battle that settled in his favour at 6-11, 13-11, 4-0 after the Frenchman retired in the third set according to information received here Thursday. Three Englishmen Mick Matthew, Peter Barker and James Willstrop also marched into the last four stage of the richest ever championship carrying us dollar 327,000 in prize money. Londoner Barker claimed his first semi-final appearance in his eighth attempt after Egyptian opponent Karim Darwish, the fourth seed, retired injured midway through the third game. Barker won 11-7, 6-11, 6-7. It was a bitter blow for the in-form Darwish who arrived in Saudi after success in last months Qatar Classic and Octobers El Gouna International Open in Egypt - and was runner-up in the 2008 World Open. Barkers opponent in the semi final will be will be Willstrop who, in the last match of the day, defeated rising Egyptian star Mohamed El Shorbagy to ensure that three Englishmen will contest the World Open semi-finals for the first time in the events 34-year history. Willstrop was full of praise for his opponent: All credit to him, he came out firing, stuck in and his intensity never dropped - good stuff for a 19-year-old. When I was down towards the end of the games he started getting confidence in his shots and I had to dig in - the extra seven or eight years experience probably helped there. Distinguished Egyptian Amr Shabana stands in the way of the events first English champion. Defending champion and winner of the title a total of four times, Shabana eased his way into the semis for the sixth time in a row after beating French rival Gregory Gaultier. But, again it was a thigh injury that caused fifth seed Gaultier to concede the match prematurely after winning the opening game.Shabana will face Nick Matthew, the 30-year-old from Sheffield who is seeded to become Englands first ever world champion. Matthew faced Thierry Lincou, the seventh-seeded Frenchman who was champion in 2004. Matthew took the first game and Lincou led briefly in the second. But the Englishman soon resumed control before charging to his 11-3, 11-5, 11-2 victory in 38 minutes. Results Quarter-finals: [1] Nick Matthew (ENG) bt [7] Thierry Lincou (FRA) 11-3, 11-5, 11-2 (38m), [3] Amr Shabana (EGY) bt [5] Gregory Gaultier (FRA) 6-11, 13-11, 4-0 ret. (57m), [8] Peter Barker (ENG) bt [4] Karim Darwish (EGY) 11-7, 6-11, 6-7 ret. (45m), [6] James Willstrop (ENG) bt [13] Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY) 11-9, 11-8, 11-8 (50m). Semi-final line-up: [1] Nick Matthew (ENG) v [3] Amr Shabana (EGY), [6] James Willstrop (ENG) v [8] Peter Barker (ENG).