Willstrop and Matthew join 40,000 players on World Squash Day to back 2020 Olympic bid
Friday, 19 October 2012
October 19 - Britain's world number one and number two squash players, respectively James Willstrop and Nick Matthew, will take part along with an estimated 40,000 players all around the globe in tomorrow's giant gesture of support for the sport's bid to earn an Olympic place in 2020.
World Squash Day will involve more than 750 squash clubs from all over the world – representing 72 nations from Argentina to Zimbabwe – taking part in the World 2020 Challenge.
Willstrop (picture top, centre) and current world champion Matthew (pictured top, left) are backing the bid with a special event taking place during the new Professional Squash Association (PSA) NetSuite Open in San Francisco.
"At the time of writing, more than 35,000 players have registered to take part in the event, demonstrating significant global support for squash's Olympic bid," said World Squash Day founder Alan Thatcher.
WSF chief executive Andrew Shelley added: "This impressive level of support proves conclusively that the worldwide squash family is right behind the Olympic bid.
"There is a heart-warming contrast in so many of the clubs taking part, from small buildings located in rural locations to plush, city-centre clubs.
"It's very encouraging to see that these clubs are showing such passion to support the bid and are doing so on court – not only primarily promoting squash locally but also demonstrating all the positive attributes that squash can bring to future Olympics."
Britain's Minister for Sport, Hugh Robertson, added his support, saying: "I'm delighted that so many people will be taking part in World Squash Day this Saturday.
"This shows how popular squash is in many countries."
Each club will field two teams of 20, often more, representing Team Squash and Team 2020, with fitness, stamina and skill being put to the test as players compete in each individual tie, playing one game up to 20 points.
Each club score will count towards an overall global result.