Early days

Beginning of squash in South Africa

As with many sports in South Africa, squash was introduced early in the 20th century through the influence of the British military forces with the first courts being built at the Johannesburg Country Club and the Pretoria Squash Club.

These courts were wider and longer than the modern ones and were used for the old fashioned game known as fives or racket ball. Squash rackets as it was known, was played mainly as an elitist sport at private schools and clubs but grew in popularity from 1925. In 1930 the court at the Johannesburg Country Club, which had been an open air one, was fitted with a roof and at the same time reduced to the conventional size court, as we now know them. Shortly thereafter, similar sized courts were built in Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg.

In 1910 South Africa became the first country in the World to form a national controlling body. The main function of this body was to administer the South African Championships.

The inaugural meeting of the S A Squash Rackets Association was held in Queenstown in December 1946. Mr HW P Whiteley was chairman – a post he held for 10 consecutive years. A National body was required to control and co-ordinate tours, tournaments, coaching and to promote the game. Jurisdiction spread from South Africa to the then Rhodesia, Botswana and Swaziland. One of the first five vice-presidents was Dr Danie Craven.

The men’s association recorded the women’s closed championship results, but apart from this, the women with an informal committee, promoted their own squash and eventually in 1969 under the chairmanship of Mrs Edna Scott formed a structured committee, but they were still officially under the auspices of the men.

In 1974 on the recommendation of the Department of Sport and Recreation the women’s association became a fully fledged association with Mrs Shirley Leonard as the first chairperson.

The South African Squash Rackets Federation was inaugurated in 1979 with Mr Clive Vawda as president. The Federation’s main aim was non-racial squash. The federation’s membership was concentrated in the Transvaal, Western Province and Natal.

International Squash Rackets Federation

In the sixties it was decided that world squash required a controlling body and thus South Africa together with Australia, Great Britain, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, and the United Arab Republic became the founder members of the International Squash Rackets Federation in 1967.

In 1970 Pakistan proposed that South Africa be expelled from the World Body but this proposal was withdrawn when South Africa stated that they would not compete on an official basis in the future. Although the South African administration issued a statement of non-racialism, the only competition from 1982 was on an unofficial basis until after Unity in 1992.

In 1976 at an international meeting of women squash administrators in Australia, Mrs Jill Eksteen of South Africa was invited to act as chair of the inaugural body formed to establish the Women’s Squash Rackets Association. The Women’s Squash Rackets Association was officially recognised from 1978.


On 21st February 1992 Unity between the South African Men’s Squash Rackets Association, The Women’s Squash Rackets Association of South Africa and the South African Squash Rackets Federation was signed in Johannesburg. This was the culmination of 15 months of constructive debate co-ordinated by a Steering Committee chaired by Advocate Rob Wise.


                        Winner                                                                     Winner

1910                H R Keed                                            1911              H  R Keed

1912                B MacMaughten                                 1913              C Reunert

1925                C Reunert                                            1926            M McMaster

1927                M Mc Master                                      1928              H D Clinch

1929                H D Clinch                                          1930             H P Whiteley

1931                H P Whiteley                                      1932             H P Whiteley

1933                D Beckingham                                    1934            T W Barnes

1935                H P Whiteley                                      1936             H P Whiteley

1937                H P Whiteley                                      1938             H P Whiteley

Winner                                               Runner-up    

1946                B H Callaghan

1947                D Beckingham                                   D Callaghan                3-2

1948                H W P Whiteley                                 A M Rosholt               3-0

1949                F Hildick-Smith                                  B Callaghan                3-0

1950                B Callaghan                                       F Hildick-Smith          3-0

1951                B Callaghan                                       D Dodgson                 3-1

1952                B Callaghan                                       D Callaghan                3-1

1953                D Hodgson                                        J Field                         3-0

1954                B Callaghan                                      R Jarvis                       3-0

1955                D Callaghan                                      A Seymour-Haydon    3-0

1956                R Jarvis                                             A Barnes                     3-1

1957                C Kaplan                                           D Macdonald              3-0

1958                N Broomfield                                     C Kaplan                     3-0

1959                L Melvill                                             D Callaghan

1960                D Callaghan                                      A Lange                      3-1

1961                L Melvill                                             D Callaghan                3-1

1962                M Oddy                                             L Melvill                     3-1

There was now more movement amongst the international players, who apart from playing in the British Open Championships, began visiting South Africa.

1963                K Hiscoe (Aus)                       R Carter (Aus)            3-1

1964                P Robinson                              David Barrow             3-2

1965                P Robinson                              G Massey                   3-1

1966                C Nancarrow (Aus)                 David Barrow             3-1

1967                D Botha                                  David Barrow             3-1

1968                J Barrington (Eng)                  David Barrow             3-0

1969                David Barrow                          M Corby (Eng)            3-0

1970                P Ayton (GB)                           G MacDonald             3-1

1971                Doug Barrow                           David Barrow             3-0

1972                Doug Barrow                           S Sherren                     3-2

1973                C Nancarrow (Aus)                 D Wright (Aus)           3-1

1974                P Ayton  (GB)                          S Machet                     3-0

1975                I Holding                                  M Donnelly (Aus)       3-1

1976                J Leslie (GB)                           B Brownlee (NZ)        3-0

1977                S Machet                                 D Williams (Aus)        3-2

1978                D Scott                                    F Donnelly (Aus)        3-0

1979                L Kvant (Sweden)                  G Brumby (Aus)         3-0

1980                L Kvant (Sweden)                  M Awad (Egypt)        3-1

1981                T Wilkinson                             G Pollard (Aus)           3-1

With the abolition of the Amateur Code in September 1981, the Championships now became the South African National (Closed) Championship.

1982                R Watson                                I Holding                    3-0

1983                I Holding                                T Wilkinson                 3-1

1984                I Holding                                P Symonds                  3-2

1985                I Holding                                P Symonds                  3-1

1986                S Hailstone                              T Wilkinson                 3-2

1987                T Wilkinson                             R Koep                        3-1

1988                T Wilkinson                             S Hailstone                  3-0

1989                S Hailstone                              P Symonds                  3-1

1990                G Way                                     P Symonds                  3-1

1991                S Hailstone                              G Way                         3-0

Squash South Africa National Championships (after Unity)

1992                C van der Wath                       S Hailstone                  3-1

1993                C van der Wath                       M Tootill                     3-0

1994                C van der Wath                       R Durbach                   3-0

1995                G Whittaker                            R Durbach                   3-0

1996                G Whittaker                            C van der Wath           3-0

1997                C Wapnick                              C van der Wath           3-1

1998                G Whittaker                            C Wapnick                  3-0

1999                R Durbach                               G Whittaker                3-1

2000                A Hansen                                G Whittaker                3-0

2001                G Whittaker                            R Durbach                   3-1

2002                G La Mude                             A Hansen                    7-9 2-0 ret.

2003                R Durbach                               A Hansen                    3-2

2004                C van der Wath                       A Hansen                    9-1 ret.

2005                A Hansen                                R Durbach                   3-1

2006                A Hansen                                R Durbach                   3-1

2007                S Coppinger                            A Hansen                    3-0

2008                S Coppinger                            J Engelbrecht              3-0

2009                R Durbach                               S Coppinger                3-0

2010                S Coppinger                            C Leeuw                     3-0

2011                S Coppinger                            S Le Roux                   3-1

2011                S Coppinger                            S Le Roux                   3-1

South African Squash Rackets Federation

Men                                         Women

1983                H Mansoor                              D Stephens

1984                C Selvey                                  D Stephens

1985                –                                               D Stephens

1986                A Wrankmore                         D Stephens

1987                A Wrankmore                         D Stephens

1988                A Wrankmore                         J Ells

1989                A Wrankmore                         M vd Hoeven

1990                F Patel                                     C Baker

1991                Z Mangal                                 C Baker

In 1989 the following players received SASRF colours:

A Wrankmore, D Hendricks, D Royappen, F Patel, M van der Hoeven, M Adonis, C Baker, D Sharpe

S A Open Junior Championships under the auspices of the South African Squash Rackets Federation

1988                Men                                         Women

Under 21         Z Mangal

Under 19                                                         N Hector

Under 16         H Hector                                 M Adams

Under 14         R Smith

Under 12         F Moolla


Under 19         R Williams                              N Hector

Under 16         T Jeftha

Under 14         C Peters

Under 12         T Jeftha