EPSA and ESF announce European Under-13 circuit
The Professional Squash Association (PSA) and the European Squash Federation (ESF) have announced a new European Under 23 Tour which will begin with the JW Cannon British Under 23 Open in January next year.
The initiative has been put in place with the dual purpose of helping young players reach their full potential and assisting them in successfully making the transition from junior tournaments to fully fledged PSA World Tour events.
Each host venue will offer $2,000 in prize money in both the Men’s and Women’s events while the participants will be able to earn points that will count towards their PSA World Rankings – helping new players bolster their position within the professional ranks before making the move to compete alongside the world’s best players.
“The inception of the European Under 23 Tour will enable young players to go through a seamless transition as they aim to make the step up from junior competition to participate on the PSA World Tour,” said PSA Chief Executive Officer Alex Gough (left).
“This endeavour is in keeping with our aim of making PSA World Tour events more accessible for all our members, helping young players reach their maximum potential and increasing playing opportunities across the sport as we continue to try and grow professional squash around the globe.”
The highly regarded British Under 23 Open, which takes place at the Roehampton Club in London, makes its first appearance on the calendar since 1990 when luminaries such as Jahangir Khan, Rodney Martin and Susan Devoy lifted the prestigious trophy in the past.
“The ESF and the PSA have for some time wanted to work together towards improving the opportunities for our post-19 players’” commented ESF President Zena Wooldridge.
“This is a much needed collaborative venture which we hope will grow just as the ESF junior and masters’ circuits have. We are grateful to Tim Garner and the PSA for their commitment to this project, to the Swiss Federation for delivering the pilot event and to Roehampton Club for hosting in January. I’m sure this new circuit will make a real difference to our aspiring future professionals.”
Roehampton Racquets Manager Paul Lindsay said: “Roehampton Club is delighted to be confirmed as the host of the JW Cannon British U23 Open, which is part of the new ESF & PSA Under 23 circuit.
“The British U23 Open, with principle sponsor JW Cannon, sits perfectly alongside other external tournaments including the JW Cannon BSPA GP Finals and is a reflection of the members’ efforts to drive squash participation both internally and externally.
“Roehampton Club now boasts six glass back courts including a new sixth show court with options for both singles and doubles play. We are excited to welcome everyone to the event in January 2016 and seeing some world class squash at our club.”
Further events are set to be added to the European Under 23 Tour from February 2016 onwards as the Tour looks set for some encouraging growth going forward.