Matthew and Massaro look forward to Manchester
By NATHAN CLARKE
Tickets for the 2017 AJ Bell PSA Men’s and Women’s Squash World Championships went on general sale with squash fans rushing to secure their place at the most prestigious tournament on the squash calendar.
Taking place at the National Squash Centre in Manchester between December 9-13, with the quarter-final action onwards taking place at Manchester Central Convention Complex from December 14-17, the PSA World Championships will bring the cream of the Men’s and Women’s Tours together to compete for the sport’s most sought-after title in what promises to be one of the most competitive and intense World Championships ever.
Following an exclusive pre-sale period, Premium Back Wall seats for both the semi-finals and finals have already sold out, meaning squash fans have to act fast if they are to secure a place in the crowd for the crucial knock-out rounds. Tickets for the tournament are priced from just £10 and are available to purchase via TicketMaster: http://www.ticketmaster.co.uk/ajbellworldchamps
English duo Nick Matthew and Laura Massaro, the respective Men’s and Women’s national number ones, say they are relishing the prospect of competing in front of a home crowd with three-time World Champion Matthew, who at 37 will be one of the eldest competitors in the Men’s draw, particularly excited to be returning to Manchester, the scene of his last world title triumph in 2013.
“I’m thrilled that the World Championship is coming back to Manchester in 2017 and to have the girls competing there this year as well at the same time makes it complete – so it will be a great spectacle for the sport,” said Matthew.
“Winning the title in Manchester in 2013, in front of one of the best crowds and atmospheres I have ever experienced, is one of the most special moments of my career and I’m really excited to be returning.
“It’s testament to the work of Manchester Council, England Squash and the other partners likes AJ Bell that the tournament is coming back to Manchester.
“It will be the last World Championships I get to play in my own country – and maybe the last of my career full stop – so I’ll be doing everything I can to try to end it on a high.”
Meanwhile Massaro, who won the 2013 Women’s World Championship, will be hoping to build on her success in front of a home crowd at the Allam British Open in Hull earlier this year and lift the coveted title for a second time.
“It’s huge for England Squash to have this prestigious event in the UK and I’m really really excited to compete and hopefully be part of a real showcase for how great squash is,” said Massaro.
“It’s a massive opportunity for all of the players. The World Championship happens only once a year, but a home worlds comes once, if you’re lucky twice, a career. So for me it’s a huge incentive and for the next generation of British players it’s a great opportunity to get test themselves against the very best in the world and hopefully take that step towards competing at that next level as well.
“And knowing we’ll have a home crowd, which has inspired me to victories at the British Open before and provided that extra motivation needed in tough matches, behind us is such an extra boost. The sport’s in the midst of one of the most competitive eras ever and that crowd support could be crucial for the British players.”
The 2017 AJ Bell PSA Men’s and Women’s World Championships will take place at the National Squash Centre, Manchester and Manchester Central between December 9 – 17, 2017.
Tickets are priced from just £10 and are available to purchase by visiting http://www.ticketmaster.co.uk/ajbellworldchamps
Pictures courtesy of PSA and STEVE LINE (www.squashpics.com)