Major Competitions in Squash
The major events in the competitive calendar are:
The World Open
Effectively the individual world championship for squash players. Held annually in a different location each time, the competition begins with a qualifying round, followed by the first round, second round, quarter-finals, semi-finals and culminating in the final. Female squash players compete in the women’s World Open, an exact replica of the men’s competition.
The World Team Squash Championships
This is the world championship for national teams from the 142 members of the WSF. Teams of three or four players can be entered, and each round involves three singles matches between two countries, with the winner progressing to the next round. The contest held bi-annually and the venue changes each time. There is also a women’s championships, held in the years when there is no men’s competition.
The PSA World Tour
This is a continuous competition, rather than a one-off event. It consists of over one hundred single elimination events, which are held in more than 30 different countries. Individual players compete in these events, accumulating points which determine their position in the world rankings.
Of all the PSA World Tour events, seven competitions are singled out as being key. Known as the Super Series tournaments, these are the Tournament of Champions, PSA Masters, British Open, Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Open, Pakistan Open, Qatar Classic and World Open. The eight highest ranking players at the end of the year compete in the Super Series Finals. The prize fund for these finals and the PSA World Tour as a whole is huge.
The WISPA World Tour
This competition is the women’s equivalent of the PSA World Tour. It is the official World Circuit for Women’s Professional Squash and is used as the basis for the Women’s World Rankings.
Other major events
The bi-annual World Doubles Squash Championships includes the following events: Men’s Doubles, Women’s Doubles, and Mixed Doubles. The tournament is a recent arrival on the squash scene, first played in 1997. Players in the doubles matches must be from the same country.
Racketlon is a multi-discipline sporting event based on the triathlon concept, except that instead of running, cycling and swimming, Racketlon involves the four racquet sports of table tennis, badminton, squash and tennis. It’s a recent idea, conceived in 2001, but is rapidly becoming popular, with the 2007 Racketlon World Tour comprising 11 tournaments in 11 countries. Check out the official Racketlon website for more details, or visit the excellent UK Racketlon site to find your nearest club and details of upcoming tournaments.
Major British Events
By far the most significant event at home is the British Open Squash Championships. As one of the oldest squash tournaments, it is also widely regarded on the international stage. The championship takes place every year and the men’s and women’s competitions are held as a joint event.