Women’s squash is celebrating after the prize money on offer in the 2014 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions has been doubled.
The kitty has been increased from $25k to $50k, which means an upgrade from WSA Silver Level to Gold.
The prize money still lags a long way behind the men, but, following on from the equal cash incentives on offer in the recent US Open, this is viewed as a step in the right direction.
Grand Central Terminal in New York City is an iconic building, one of the most spectacular train stations in the world and the sixth most visited tourist destination on the planet.
It is this, along with its historic place in the city that has made it an incredible venue for Squash since the Tournament of Champions was first held here in 1995.
President of Squash Engine US and tournament promoter John Nimick shared his excitement.”The 17th edition of the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions in Grand Central Terminal will indeed be a very special one this coming January 2014 with our announcement that the women’s division will increase to a WSA Gold 50 level. For the first time in the tournament’s prestigious history dating back to 1930 and with resounding support from the NYC squash community, the “ToC” will offer top level world ranking draws for both men and women”.
Suzie Pierrepont, WSA’s Director for North America added “The WSA is thrilled that the TOC will be a part of the World Series in 2014. John and his team run a first class event and I know the knowledgeable squash fans in New York will be excited to have the world’s top women competing.”
The increase in prize money will certainly attract many of the WSA’s top players, which alongside the top PSA players will no doubt make for the best event yet during New York City Squash Week.
World number one and seven times World Champion Nicol David is looking forward to playing the event for the first time, and revealed:
“This is great news for women’s squash to have the ToC raising their prize money to a Gold level for the WSA event in 2014. Thanks to the huge support of the sponsors to add the funds and see potential in our women’s tour to take it up to the next level.
“It’s such a spectacular event at Grand Central Station in New York and to have the best men and women squash players together showcasing squash at the top level will truly be a treat for everyone watching. I’m really excited to play this event for the very first time in my squash career.”
British Open champion and world number two Laura Massaro shared her delight, “It exciting to have the Tournament of Champions back on the WSA calendar for 2014. It’s an amazing event held in one of the most spectacular locations you can put a squash court. I look forward to making an appearance in Grand Central Station again!”
The 2014 J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions will takes place from January 20-24 with qualifying taking place on the 18-19 January at the Yale Club in New York City.