James Willstrop and Sarah-Jane Perry top England Squash action in Manchester
By DONNA HELMER – Squash Mad Correspondent
National champions James Willstrop and Sarah-Jane Perry will headline the AJ Bell England Squash Championships which will be staged at the National Squash Centre in Manchester starting tomorrow (Tuesday February 9) and running through to Friday. All of the action will be streamed live on SQUASHTV and Facebook.
The competition will feature a men’s and women’s tournament containing 12 players in the men’s event and 10 players in the women’s.
The format will comprise two days of pool stage action before playoffs commence on Thursday February 11. The tournament will serve as preparation for the return of the Professional Squash Association (PSA) World Tour and will provide England’s leading players some much needed competitive playing time.
English number ones and national champions Willstrop and Perry will be the highest-ranked players and will headline the respective men’s and women’s draws.
The highest PSA ranked England Squash programme players have been selected to compete, with a wild card entry also invited into each category.
Willstrop will be joined in the men’s tournament by Declan James, Tom Richards, George Parker, Patrick Rooney, Richie Fallows, Nick Wall, Josh Masters, Tom Walsh, Sam Todd, Curtis Malik and National Coach pick Charlie Lee.
Millie Tomlinson, Julianne Courtice, Jasmine Hutton, Anna Kimberley, Kace Bartley, Alicia Mead, Grace Gear, Georgina Kennedy and National Coach pick Lucy Beecroft join Perry in the women’s tournament.
David Campion, England Squash National Coach said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has seen the cancellation of numerous squash tournaments both in England and around the globe and we felt it was important to ensure that our athletes have a chance to return to competitive action.
“We are thankful for the support of AJ Bell in helping us stage this event with the PSA and are particularly pleased to be collaborating with the PSA in broadcasting the AJ Bell England Squash Championships around the world.”
Pool stage action will begin on Tuesday February 9 at 16:00 (GMT), continuing on Wednesday from 10:00 with the final match of the day scheduled for 20:30. The play-action in Manchsteroffs begin on Thursday February 11 from 13:00, with the final match of the day scheduled for 18:00.
The men’s and women’s finals will take place on Friday February 12 at 17:00 and 18:00 respectively with the remaining play-off matches taking place from 15:00.
All glass-court and side court matches will be shown live and for free on the official Facebook pages of England Squash and the PSA World Tour; to SQUASHTV digital subscribers, as well as englandsquash.tv and the PSA SQUASHTV YouTube channel.
Pictures courtesy of England Squash and PSA