ToC win over Nick Matthew gives Willstrop a lift
By NATHAN CLARKE
After reaching the semi-finals of the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions in January, his second PSA World Series semi-final finish of the 2016-17 season so far, England’s James Willstrop has moved up two places in the PSA Men’s World Rankings to secure a place in the top ten for the first time since 2014.
The 33-year-old Willstrop sits at No.9 on the standings courtesy of a run of form that saw him end a 19-match losing streak to compatriot and World No.5 Nick Matthew in New York to secure his first top 10 position since December 2014, when he had an operation to overcome a potentially career-ending hip injury.
Tournament of Champions winner Karim Abdel Gawad narrowed the gap on World No.1 Mohamed ElShorbagy, who maintains his place atop the standings for a 14th consecutive month, to sit just 200 points behind his fellow Egyptian as part of an unchanged top eight that contains six Egyptian players in total.
After winning the recent Motor City Open in Detroit, Australian Ryan Cuskelly moves up four positions to No.15 on the standings just ahead of New Zealand’s Paul Coll, who also rises four places to No.16 this month after impressing with a run to the quarter-finals in New York.
South Africa’s Stephen Coppinger climbs back into the top 20 for the first time in over a year courtesy of a semi-final finish at the Motor City Open while Cameron Pilley, Miguel Angel Rodriguez and Daryl Selby also move up inside the top 20.
PSA men’s world rankings, February 2017:
Picture and graphic courtesy of PSA