Allam British Open Joins 2012 PSA World Series
16 January 2012
England Squash & Racketball (ESR) and the Professional Squash Association (PSA) confirmed today that the historic Allam British Open Squash Championships will form part of the PSA World Series in 2012.
The British Open returns to London at the iconic O2 sports arena from 7-13 May 2012. The PSA World Series Platinum championship boasts a prize fund of $150,000 and will become one of the richest international events of the year.
Nick Rider, CEO England Squash & Racketball, commented: “We are delighted that the Allam British Open will form part of the 2012 PSA World Series. One of the most historic championships in the game, the British Open remains arguably the most prestigious tournament in the world.
“In the absence of Olympic inclusion in 2012, the British Open at an Olympic venue will be a fitting replacement and an opportunity for the world’s top squash players to showcase the sport on its biggest platform to date.”
PSA CEO Alex Gough added: “Winning the British Open is the dream of every squash player in the world, so we are delighted that this illustrious event is not only back on the calendar, but being staged as a PSA World Series event in England’s great capital city.”
The British Open is one of the world’s most prestigious and longest-established squash championships, with a rich history harking back to the early 1920s. Widely revered as the ‘Wimbledon of Squash’, the British Open is one of the most sought-after titles by players from all over the world.
Past champions include the illustrious Pakistani Jahangir Khan (winner of a record 10 titles from 1982-1991); Australia’sGeoff Hunt (8 titles between 1969 and 1981); Pakistan’s Hashim Khan (7 titles from 1951-1958) and Jansher Khan (6 titles from 1992-1997); and Britain’s most successful champion Jonah Barrington (6 titles from 1967-1973).
Contesting the 2012 title will be Englishman James Willstrop, the reigning world number one who reached the final in 2005, 2008 and 2009, challenged by fellow countryman Nick Matthew, the current world number two (champion in 2006 & 2009) and Frenchman Gregory Gaultier, the 2007 champion.
The women’s event also boasts a number of notable champions, none more so than Australian Heather McKay, who won a record 16 titles from 1962-1977. England’s world No2 Jenny Duncalf and world No4 Laura Massaro will be aiming to keep the title on home soil.
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