Location remains a closely guarded secret … down by the river?
By JAMES ROBERTS – Squash Mad Correspondent
The Nantes Sautron Squash Association, the organisers of the Open de France à Nantes, formerly known as the PSA Open de Nantes, has finally confirmed that the tournament will be taking place again in Nantes from September 12-17, 2022.
However, they are maintaining an air of mystery and suspense by revealing that the actual location of the event will remain a secret until just a few hours before the tournament is due to start.
Now in its sixth edition overall, the organisers have always strived to put on an original and spectacular show, fusing sport and culture in a way not seen elsewhere on the PSA World Tour, thereby attracting a diverse audience composed of squash fans, families and those completely new to the sport.
The tournament has taken place in a variety of iconic locations across the city, including the Lieu Unique, Cité des Congrès, Les Nefs, Théâtre Graslin and lastly against the spectacular backdrop of the Château des Ducs de Bretagne in 2019.
It remains to be seen which new venue the organisers have selected this year to stage the dramatic squash action that is sure to unfold, although it has been hinted that La Loire, the river flowing through Nantes, will feature as the ‘main actress’.
This year’s edition will be a Bronze level PSA event, with a total prize fund of $100,000 to be divided equally between men’s and women’s competitions and will remain one of the 12 biggest events of the PSA World Tour.
As usual, art and culture will be a central feature of the tournament, through a partnership with Pick’Up, a well-known Nantes arts association. A new poster artist, Michal Batory, has also been engaged to produce the tournament artwork, which has been described as fusing squash with poetry.
Tickets will go on general sale from May 30 but until then, it is possible to purchase a special ‘Weekend Pass’ ticket for the semi-finals and finals on the Friday and Saturday, from 60 Euros.
See the official website of the event for more information and ticket purchases: www.opensquashnantes.fr
Pictures courtesy of Open de France / Mikphotos.fr