A brief look at where Egyptian squash is headed
Egypt is enjoying a high in squash at the moment. But how long will this last? Considering squash low popularity and a seemingly weaker upcoming generation of players.
It is not debatable that Egypt is leading the squash field at the moment. Going by the PSA World Rankings, The men’s number one is, Egyptian, Karim Abdel Gawad and so is the women’s number one; Nour El Sherbini. Both world championships have been won by Egyptians.
Egypt has succeeded in achieving a new milestone. Seven of the top 10 in the November men’s ranking were Egyptians. Currently, according to April’s standings, six out of the men’s top 10 are Egyptians:
Karim Abdel Gawad (two), Mohamed El Shorbagy (three), Marwan El Shorbagy (five), Ali Farag (six), Ramy Ashour (eight) and Fares Dessouky (nine)
In the women’s top 10, three of them are Egyptians:
Nour El Sherbini (one), Raneem El Welily (four), and Nouran Gohar (five)
Raneem was the first female Egyptian to reach be ranked first by the Professional Squash Association (PSA), in September 2015.
Question remains whether Egypt will continue to dominate this sport, after this generation. If we look at the results of the coming generation, in both the men’s and women’s categories, we find that the furthest they reach is the first round of the main draw. They fail to continue any far in any of the major PSA tournaments.
Among the top 60 of the men’s rankings, aside from the six Egyptians in the top 10, there are 11 players who played an average of 12 tournament per year without rising any higher in the rankings.
For women, there are 14 ladies in the top 60 alongside the three women in the top ten. Despite the numbers of these players, the major tournaments are still in the hands of the top players. Bearing in mind that, nowadays, squash is being improved by other countries, beyond the United Kingdom, like France for example.
Although recently we dominate and are renowned, thanks to our historical results. And even though Squash is being followed by an acceptable percentage, of Egyptians, compared to the last decade we cannot say that squash is anywhere near the podium of popularity Egyptian society.
People will prefer to go for other sport they can easily practice without the need of being a club member. Far away from football, people can enjoy handball, volleyball or even basketball but for sure not squash. Atleast not for now.
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