Cayman Islands Go Gold For WISPA

An increase in the prize fund has led to the 2010 Women’s Cayman Islands Squash Open going Gold, according to an announcement today by the Women’s International Squash Players’ Association.

The $55,300 WISPA World Tour event – the third Gold event of the year, from 11-17 April – will be staged for the first time on an all-glass court erected at Camana Bay, a 500-acre shopping, entertainment, office and residential complex stretching from the Caribbean sea to the North Sound in Grand Cayman.

Launched in 2009, the Cayman Islands Open has again attracted the world’s top players, led by Malaysia’s world number one Nicol David, with Natalie Grainger, in-form Jenny Duncalf, and contenders Rachael Grinham and Alison Waters all in the mix. Grainger will be making her return to the WISPA Tour in Grand Cayman after a seven-month layoff with a foot injury.

Indeed, the draw predicts a quarter-final meeting between David and Grainger – a repeat of last year’s final, won by the Malaysian!

Meanwhile, Cayman number one Marlene West, the main draw wild card, faces the daunting prospect of meeting 2007 world champion Rachael Grinham in the opening round.

Tournament Director Dan Kneipp is delighted to be welcoming back the sport’s top women: “The Cayman Islands National Squash Association is extremely excited to host the world’s best players to our Caribbean Island.

“We are very pleased to be able to increase our WISPA World Tour championship to the Gold level. Cayman has never seen a pro tournament played on a glass show court, so we know that there will be a lot of enthusiasm and public interest as this is set up on the waterfront at Camana Bay.

“Having eight of the world’s top 10 squash players is creating an enormous buzz in Cayman as we prepare to watch the world’s best competing for our international title.

“The WISPA pros were a huge asset to our junior squash last year, helping hundreds of kids experience the sport for the first time,” Kneipp added. “We again have 14 schools that will be doing workshops and watching the pro matches and we expect this to be an invaluable tool in helping us get more Caymanian juniors into squash.

“The Cayman Islands National Squash Association also sees this as an incredible experience for our Commonwealth Games team as we prepare for Delhi 2010. For a young, amateur team to be playing alongside the world’s best professional will only add to our team’s experience and ability to compete at an international level.

“We welcome the world’s best players and the international squash media to the Cayman Islands in April.”

WISPA CEO Andrew Shelley added: “It is always very satisfying to see an event build, and that is certainly the case with the Cayman Islands Open. The debut last year was memorable for being awash with local school children trying squash at the South Sound Squash Club every day.

“This year juniors will doubtless be a major feature again, but bringing in a glass show court too in the superb outside setting of Camana Bay will be yet another great step forward in raising the profile of squash on the Island and pushing the delights of the Cayman Islands to squash enthusiasts worldwide.”

An all-glass court to be erected at Camana Bay

1st round draw:

[1] Nicol David (MAS) v Qualifier

[6] Natalie Grainger (USA) v Qualifier

[3] Rachael Grinham (AUS) v Marlene West (CAY)

[5] Madeline Perry (IRL) v Jaclyn Hawkes (NZL)

[8] Kasey Brown (AUS) v Samantha Teran (MEX)

[4] Alison Waters (ENG) v Qualifier

[7] Laura Massaro (ENG) v Qualifier

[2] Jenny Duncalf (ENG) v Camille Serme (FRA)

World Squash Day 2010

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World Squash Day Theme: 20/10 for 2010

The theme for this year’s World Squash Day on November 6 is to encourage clubs and associations all over the globe to increase playing numbers.

So, on November 6th, the challenge for every club in the world is to attract:

20 new junior players and
10 new adult members

World Squash Day is supported by WSF (World Squash Federation), and Chief Executive Andrew Shelley says: “This is a wonderful idea to create an explosive worldwide rise in participation levels.”

“Countries like Egypt are leading the way when it comes to producing wave after wave of fantastic junior players but the springboard for this is the sheer number of juniors at nearly every club in the country.”

“If other nations wish to compete at the highest level then the starting point is to increase junior participation levels – as part of the main thrust to ensure that the lifeblood of our sport, the next generation, keeps expanding of course”.

World Squash Day founder Alan Thatcher, chairman of the Kent SRA in England, added: “Squash has a massive worldwide following with some 20 million players enjoying the game in more than 120 countries.

“Participation levels are increasing in a huge number of countries but here in the UK the game has suffered because of court closures. However, it has been heartening to see that trend being reversed in many regions.”

“The single most important thing that we can do for the sport is to bring on a new generation of squash players to safeguard the future of the sport.”

“Therefore it is essential that clubs and squash associations all over the globe get behind World Squash Day to produce a significant increase in participation levels.”

Last year World Squash Day generated a massive global show of support for squash’s Olympic bid.

This year clubs and federations can announce their activities on the event website (www.worldsquashday.com).

Thatcher added: “The website has a list of ideas for clubs to get involved and organise events to showcase our fantastic sport.”


World Squash Day Video Contest!

Video submissions must be posted on our Facebook page to be in the running to win an Autographed Squash Ball by Women’s World Champion, Nicol David.

Closing date for submission is November 19, 2010.

There are 5 balls up for grab! Winners will be announced on November 30, 2010.

Some rules:
1. Must include the words Celebrate Squash / World Squash Day 2010 in the video.
2. HAVE FUN! 😀

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