Friday 4 January 2008

Stars honoured at World Squash Awards

WISPA Most Improved Player - Shelley KitchenThe third annual World Squash Awards took place on 21 December at the RAC Club in Pall Mall, London.

Devised by Eventis Sports Marketing - the company formed by Peter Nicol, Tim Garner and Angus Kirkland - the awards honoured a range of achievements throughout the squash calendar, and boasted a "star-studded gathering, featuring top players past and present as well as leading squash figures from around the world" ...

It would be difficult to argue against the PSA and WISPA Players of the Year (Amr Shabana and Nicol David respectively), as both spent the year further cementing their lengthening holds on the world number one spots.

Less predictable was the WISPA Most Improved Player, which Shelley Kitchen won, maybe due to her unexpected win over Nicol David in Madrid's World Open. Over the past 12 months the New Zealander has risen from 14 to 10 in the rankings, and while breaking into the top ten demands a greater consistency of performance which many players find hard to sustain, in purely statistical terms the award seemed a little hard on the other nominees, who have maybe taken greater individual steps.

It's a shame there wasn't a PSA Most Improved Male Player of the Year award, as Peter Barker would surely have been a good bet after his rise up the rankings and triumphant anchor-leg performance in helping England to retain the World Teams.

It was also interesting to see a non-player recognised, with the journalist Dicky Rutnagur honoured for his coverage of squash, which began back in Hashim Khan's breakthrough days.

The awards in full:

PSA Male Player of the Year:

Ramy Ashour (EGY), Gregory Gaultier (FRA), Amr Shabana (EGY)
Winner: Amr Shabana

PSA Young Male Player of the Year:

Ramy Ashour (EGY), Mohamed El Shorbagy (EGY), Omar Mosaad (EGY)
Winner: Ramy Ashour

WISPA Female Player of the Year:
Nicol David (MAS), Natalie Grinham (AUS), Rachael Grinham (AUS), Shelley Kitchen (NZL)
Winner: Nicol David

WISPA Young Female Player of the Year:
Annie Au (HKG), Heba El Torky (EGY), Low Wee Wern (MAS), Maria Toor Pakay (PAK), Camille Serme (FRA)
Winner: Camille Serme

WISPA Most Improved Female Player of the Year:
Emma Beddoes (ENG), Line Hansen (DEN), Shelley Kitchen (NZL), Tenille Swartz (RSA), Samantha Teran (MEX)
Winner: Shelley Kitchen

Lifetime Achievement award: Heather McKay

Services to Squash award: Dicky Rutnagur

World Squash Awards 2007

1 comment:

  1. Just to update this - Barker's rise has been confirmed today in the first PSA rankings of 2008 :


Feel free to comment anonymously or leave your name.

Care about the future of squash? Get it off your chest ...