‘Hard work got me here and more hard work will get me to the top 10’
By SEAN REUTHE and ALAN THATCHER
Nottingham-based Declan James has moved up four places to World No.16 to become England’s No.1 male player in the PSA Men’s World Rankings for November.
After beating James Willstrop to win the final of the Nantes Open in September, James reached the third round of the FS Investments U.S. Open Squash Championships and the second round of the Channel VAS Championships during October, where he proved to be a stern test for World No.3 Tarek Momen and World No.2 Ali Farag, respectively.
Those performances have seen the 6ft 5in James overtake compatriot and former World No.1 Willstrop in the rankings.
A delighted Declan took to social media to say: “Humbled to have reached the England number 1 spot this early in my career, especially given the legends who have held that position. Also up to a high of 16 in the world.
“Hard work pays off. Which means there’s plenty more hard work to do. Never thought I’d achieve something like this. If you’re willing to work hard and keep believing, you can always exceed your own expectations. As always a massive thanks to everyone behind me and supporting me, let’s push on again now. #top10next.”
The current holder of the World No.1 spot – Egypt’s Mohamed ElShorbagy – tops the rankings for a ninth successive month.
Ali Farag (No.2), Marwan ElShorbagy (No.3), Tarek Momen (No.4) and Simon Rösner retain their places in an unchanged top five, while France’s Gregory Gaultier moves up a place to No.6, trading places with Colombia’s Miguel Angel Rodriguez.
New Zealand’s Paul Coll stays at No.8, while former World Champion Karim Abdel Gawad rises to No.9 to overtake fellow Egyptian Mohamed Abouelghar, who completes the top 10.
India’s Saurav Ghosal stays at No.11 ahead of Peru’s Diego Elias, who moves up a place to No.12, Australia’s Ryan Cuskelly, who rises three places to No.13, Hong Kong’s Max Lee (No.14) and Egypt’s Ramy Ashour (No.15).
2015 World Championship runner-up Omar Mosaad has fallen five places to No.17, with Willstrop (No.18), Nicolas Mueller (No.19) and Raphael Kandra rounding off the top 20.
PSA Men’s World Rankings Top 20 – November 2018.
Picture and graphic courtesy of PSA