World’s Best Squash Stars Confirmed for World Open in Rotterdam
15 September 2011
A star-studded cast featuring the world’s best players will line up in the World Open Squash 2011, the richest ever event in world squash which will take place in Rotterdam, from 28 October to 6 November.
England’s world number one Nick Matthew will be hoping to become the first man for 15 years to retain the sport’s most prized title, while Malaysian superstar Nicol David, also ranked one in the world, will be aiming to become the first to win the women’s trophy for a sixth time.
Matthew leads a men’s field featuring four former World Open champions – Amr Shabana, Ramy Ashour, David Palmer and Thierry Lincou, all of whom have also topped the world rankings. Matthew, 31, from Sheffield, rounded off the best year of his career in Saudi Arabia last December by becoming world champion for the first time.
But 12 months earlier in Kuwait, Egyptian Amr Shabana clinched the title for the fourth time – after earlier wins in 2003, 2005 & 2007. Fellow Egyptian Ramy Ashour became one of the youngest ever champions in 2008 in England – and only the second player in history (after Jansher Khan) to add the senior world title to earlier world junior success.
Distinguished Australian David Palmer, who will be making his 12th successive appearance in the championships in Rotterdam, is a two-time winner (in 2002 & 2006), while Thierry Lincou became the only Frenchman to lift the crown in 2004.
Dutch interest in the world’s premier event, which features the 112 best men and 72 best women in the world, will be led by national champions Laurens Jan Anjema and Natalie Grinham. Anjema, the 28-year-old world No12 from The Hague, celebrated a fine start to the new squash season by reaching the quarter finals of the prestigious PSA World Series Australian Open as an unseeded player, before only narrowly losing out in the final of the Colombian Open. The six-time Dutch champion will be looking to surpass his seeding.
The draw for the World Open Squash 2011 – which offers a total prize fund of US$ 418.000, a record in squash – will be made in Rotterdam on Monday 10th October at a special press conference featuring Ahmed Aboutaleb, the mayor of Rotterdam, and representatives of the governing bodies PSA and WISPA.
The first six days (28 October to 2 November) of the most prestigious squash championship on the PSA and WISPA World Tours will take place at the renowned Victoria Squash club in Rotterdam, whilst the final stages (3-6 November) will be played on a full ASB Glass Court which will be erected on the podium of the spectacular New Luxor Theatre in the Dutch City of Sports.
More information can be found on the official tournament site www.worldopensquash2011.com