Essex youngster gets special date at the Shabana Stortford Shootout
Egyptian Amr Shabana has added his praise for the sporting behavior shown by young Essex lad Michael ‘Mikey’ Tallentire at last weekend’s Essex Junior Open in England and has asked to meet the youngster from Colchester.
Video footage was published of Michael’s gracious behavior after he narrowly lost his Under-11 boys’ final against Harry Martin and he was awarded a special trophy for his sportsmanship.
When Shabs, the world number eight player, saw the clip of Mikey spontaneously applauding and hugging his opponent he sent him a special invite to the Shabana Shootout exhibition evening being staged at Bishops Stortford Squash Club next Thursday and Friday (May 8-9th).
Shabana, one of the most gifted squash players of all time, has never performed an exhibition event in this country but was talked into it by Essex’s world number 10 Daryl Selby. He has helped stage the four-man, two-night squash-fest which will also include another Essex man, world number 7 Pete Barker and Aussie Cameron Pilley.
It was while Daryl and Shabs were planning next Thursday’s first night at Stortford that the video clip of Mikey’s sportsmanship surfaced. Daryl explained:” I had seen footage of Mikey on the Essex Junior website and thought it was tremendously sporting. I showed it to Shabs and we were discussing how a young squash player could teach so many professional footballers a lesson or two. While they dive, feign injury and cheat, there was Mikey and Harry showing what true sportsmanship is all about.
“That’s when Shabs said ‘Hey, let’s invite this kid down to Stortford to say hi’. So that’s what we have done. Michael will be our guest on Thursday and we are all looking forward to shaking his hand.”
For full details of the Shabana Shootout, go to www.offthewallsports.co.uk
Organisers at the club have managed to shuffle the seating around and have been able to release a few extra tickets to satisfy demand.
Check out the video of Mikey’s reaction after the final point www.EssexJuniorSquash.com