Global Gallery Number Four: Special, May 6, 1999 ©1999 SquashTalk
[Who is Martin Bronstein?]
Read the past Global Gallery Columns:
[# Three, May 2, 1999]
[# Two, April 2, 1999] [# One, March 8, 1999]
YES VIRGINIA, THERE WILL BE A BRITISH OPEN THIS YEAR AFTER ALL.
Where there’s oil there’s money. Aberdeen, northern Scotland, is seen as the oil capital of the UK because of
the offshore wells. And it is there that the 1999 British Open is almost certain to take place. Not that the oil
money is financing it. No, it’s government money in the form of $125,000 of Scottish Sports Council funds that
has got this most prestigious show back on the road. However, the catch is that not one cent of the grant can
be used as prize money, so the organisers are now looking for around $150,000 more from corporate sponsors to
use as the prize fund. Alan Thatcher, a journalist who is one of the organisers, says they’ve almost reached
the target. Dates are November 10-14 th at the Aberdeen Conference Centre. Mind you, Thatcher says, not
all the I’s have been dotted or the T’s crossed but he reckons its 85 percent certain.
NOW THAT’S WHAT YOU CALL A POWER PLAY
Remember Jansher Khan? Of course you do. Thought he’d retired? Of course not. He was just resting and getting over some sprains. He was due to make his comeback at the British Open in April until it was ‘postponed’. Now, says the PSA press release, he will make his comeback at the Libertel Squash Open in Maastricht, Holland, June 1-6. It seems they’ve given the great one a wild card and guess who his first round opponent is? The new world number one, that crazy Canuck J. Power, so says Mark Chaloner who was filling me in on all the latest before an exhibition match against Paul Johnson on May 6.
Now, you Freudians, who will be the most worried? Power, the man with a position to protect , whop will be remembering all the beatings Jansher handed out ? Or will Jansher have the furrowed brow, bearing in mind the year he’s been out of action and his lack of match practise? Sorry, I’m taking no bets or making predictions.
THE WAY OF THE (CANADIAN) WORLD
Whenever squash players gather in Canada, they start proceedings, not by singing that doleful dirge of a national anthem, O Canada (I’m allowed to say that as I hold Canadian citizenship) but by bellowing out “I did it Mike Way”. (Sorry about the pun).
Mike seems to have got a finger in every pie, the best known one being as the coach of the world champion and world number one, a certain J. Power.
But he is also coach to every other top player in Canada, male and female. He is also the General Manager and Director of Coaching for the National Squash Training Centre, which is based at the Toronto Racket Club. So far the NSTC has one sponsor, Wilson, and has two more in the pipeline.
And a major private school in the heart of Toronto is in the process of building a 6-10 court squash centre and would like to be associated with the NSTC, which would be an ideal set-up, Mike tells me.
“The school has raised the money from the alumni and the centre is in the design stage,” Mike reports.
Although only senior players were targeted for the Centre, Mike and his crew are also helping out players as young as 10. That’s the way to keep the ball rolling. Pakistan forgot to look to the future, basking in the glory of Jahangir and Jansher. Now their top ranked player is Amjad Khan who is up to 13 in the latest rankings, the only Pakistani in the top 30. By contrast Egypt invested heavily in junior squads and now dominate junior events.
You can reach Martin Bronstein by email in the UK.
page posted 5.6.99