By LEE HORTON
SQUASH fans can throw away their hats, scarves and winter warmers, the Allam British Open is coming indoors. After last May’s failed gamble to stage the event outdoors on the pitch at Premier League Football Club Hull City, the world’s oldest squash event is returning to a more traditional indoor venue next year.
Thanks to the fantastic and continued support of title sponsor Dr Assem Allam, the world’s best will descend on Hull’s impressive indoor Sports Arena, from May 12-18.
Last year’s British Open was plagued by extreme weather conditions which made it hell for fans and event organisers alike. Bitterly cold conditions, high winds, rain and, bizarrely, intense sunlight all combined to test the resolve of everyone involved. At one point the event had to be switched to a nearby squash club which had limited broadcasting facilities and no room for fans who had already bought tickets.
It was a brave and bold attempt to stage a world class event in an iconic setting. Sadly the British weather is a temperamental mistress and has won the day.
British fans will be heading to Hull hoping to see a repeat of last year’s success which saw Preston’s Laura Massaro crowned Women’s champion after she dethroned World number 1 Nicol David.
And current men’s world champion Nick Matthew will carry huge home support as he takes on the world’s best, including Egyptian golden boy Ramy Ashour, England rival James Willstrop and mecurial Frenchman Gregory Gaultier.
Tickets for the Platinum World Series event are now on sale. Members of England Squash & Racketball have first choice in an exclusive 5 day pre-sale. Tickets priced from just £10 will go on general sale on Wednesday, December 4, so make sure you book your tickets today to secure the best seats.
Smart decision, better safe than sorry. Dr Allam’s generosity deserves an event that is the very best from start to finish.