World Squash Day 2014 was a resounding success, with thousands of players taking part in challenging and creative events all over the planet.
In a trans-Atlantic speed challenge, Australia’s world No.22 Cameron Pilley attempted to improve on his world record of 176mph during a competition at the US Open in Philadelphia.
This time his feared forehand was slightly off his best as he registered 163mph in a head-to-head with former world record holder John White, head coach at Drexel University, which hosted the Delaware Investments US Open Championships.
England’s world No.14 Sarah-Jane Perry recorded 144mph, which sets a benchmark for future women’s challenges.
In England, Team Winchester squad member Steve Wykes outgunned the top pros by recording an impressive 168mph during a World Squash Day doubles tournament at The Mote Squash Club in Maidstone, Kent.
Two English squash enthusiasts, James Roberts and Mark Davey, completed a magnificent marathon by playing seven matches at seven local clubs in the space of seven hours, finishing up at their home club of Lichfield in Staffordshire.
In Australia, squash players gathered for a rally outside Parliament House in Canberra before dispersing to open-day events at clubs across the city.
In Poland and India, new media was embraced as players were encouraged to upload “squash selfies” and Tweet the reasons why they loved squash so much.
Across the globe, reports emerged of numerous fun events to promote the game, including fancy dress doubles, thousands of free lessons for juniors, and coaches cycling from club to club to offer free classes.
Numerous clubs simply opened their doors to hold open days to show that squash is one of the best sports for all-round fitness, with an hour of activity on the court burning around 900 calories.
World Squash Day founder Alan Thatcher was delighted with the response. He said: “I have been inundated with reports of clubs and federations staging some amazing events to promote the sport.
“Squash is on a real high at the moment, with some fantastic presentation of the sport in the Commonwealth Games, Pan-American Games and the Asian Games.
“It was wonderful for World Squash Day to be featured so prominently during one of the world’s leading tournaments, the US Open, and we are already looking at some novel ideas for next year.”
Further details from: www.worldsquashday.net