Ramy withdraws from Tournament of Champions as injury problems continue into the New Year
By ALAN THATCHER – Squash Mad Editor
Reigning champion Ramy Ashour has pulled out of the Tournament of Champions in New York.
The Egyptian superstar admits he is struggling to overcome the hamstring injury that forced him to withdraw from last year’s World Championship and Hong Kong Open.
Ashour, who has slipped to number three in the latest PSA world rankings, clearly needs more time to deal with a long-term injury problem that has blighted his career.
He admits that he took the decision to withdraw after receiving medical advice.
“It really saddens me not to play the spectacular Tournament of Champions event this year,” said Ashour.
“The ToC is one of my favorite events but as I am still struggling with my injury the doctors have advised me not to compete with my current condition. I wish the rest of the players a great event.”
The 2014 J.P Morgan Tournament of Champions takes place at Grand Central Station from January 17-24.
Ashour had been hoping to win his fourth ToC title to join Canadian squash legend Jonathan Power as the event’s most dominant competitors.
A disappointed ToC promoter John Nimick said:
“While Ramy Ashour’s unfortunate withdrawal denies him a shot at a record-tying fourth ToC title, the strength and competitive passion of the other top PSA World Tour players ensures that the 2014 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions will once again be a showcase of electrifying competition from the sport’s great athletes.”
Ashour was due to begin his campaign against Adrian Grant in the first round at the first World Series event of 2014. The 26-year-old will now look to return to full fitness ahead of the Swedish Open in February.
Such a shame, for both Ramy and all Squash fans. Watched him play Willstrop in the semi of last year’s British Open and it was jaw-dropping to watch (especially the first game). I was sat with some of the top British juniors who were attending a squad and you could tell by their reaction at some of his shot making that they were inspired. He’s one of those rare players who has the potential to transcend the sport, change the way it’s played, and grab the interest of non-squash fans….so, fingers crossed, he can overcome this and it doesn’t blight the rest of his career.