Former High Performance head
is tasked with lifting the game
England Squash and Racketball have made Keir Worth the new chief executive.
The former Head of the Coaching and Performance division returns to the Manchester HQ tasked with increasing participation figures, which have dropped to around 300,000 players.
Squash Mad understands he must wait approximately 11 weeks before starting in his new post after handing in his notice to the British Shooting Association, where he was appointed as Performance Director in October 2013.
Worth, 40, is a former Kent junior county player who rose up the coaching ranks to oversee one of the most comprehensive and successful coaching departments in the game before leaving the association a few months ago for a senior management post with an Olympic sport.
England Squash had come under pressure from Sport England to make changes at the top after failing to meet participation targets set by the national funding body.
That led to the resignation of Chief Executive Nick Rider and, more recently, his No.2 Jim Lord, plus a reduction in funding coupled with a threat that more cuts might follow if figures continued to decline.
However, England’s success at elite level, with Nick Matthew and Laura Massaro as world champions and the men’s squad winning the World Team Championships, would have underscored Worth’s appointment to this key post.
A statement on the ESR website announced:
England Squash & Racketball are pleased to announce the appointment of Keir Worth as Chief Executive Officer.
Worth rejoins ESR from British Shooting, having previously been employed as ESR Head of Coaching and Performance during a very successful period, culminating in England’s men becoming World Team Champions.
ESR Chairman Peter Goldson said: “I am delighted that we have been able to attract Keir to return to ESR, where his main priority will be to increase the numbers of people playing squash and racketball in England.
“Keir has exceptional knowledge of our sports and is also highly respected by Sport England, our major stakeholder.”
Worth commented: “The CEO is a privileged role that I have always aspired to achieve and I am thrilled to have been selected to lead the challenge on improving participation and completing the transition that is already under way to make ESR into a high-performing National Governing Body.”