Matthew 11points

• Canary Wharf Squash Classic • 24th to 28th March 2014 • London •  

[ Matthew 11points ] Clyne 11points ] Rodriguez 11points ] Darwish 11points ] Mosaad 11points ] Ghosal 11points ]



World champion Nick Matthew won the Canary Wharf title three years in a row from 2010 to 2012. Last year he lost in the semi-finals to England team-mate Peter Barker. Silently, secretly, he hurled his racket into the adjacent dock.

This year, buoyed by a third world title and a sixth national title (both won in Manchester) he is back in London to claim a fourth Canary Wharf championship.

1: Please tell me about the racket in the river at Canary Wharf last year!

I figured that there was everything else in the Thames apart from a squash racket!

2: Things obviously looked up after that and you enjoyed a phenomenal run of form. Would I be right to assume there must have been some significant decisions and goal-setting either side of a special event in the summer?

There was a wedding! Then there was some excellent time off and regrouping allowing me to get some get off season work in and come back fresher and raring to go.

3: Getting married, being inducted into the Sheffield Hallf Of Fame and winning the World Open made 2013 a very special year. Any other special moments that we don't know about?

It was a great year and one which will be difficult to surpass (trying my hardest with our first child due in 2014!). Some of our closest friends got married as well and it's always nice to be on the other side of the fence witnessing special days like that. We had our first family Christmas in our new house which was amazing fun. In a squash sense, obviously the Worlds was a highlight but it was also great to finally win in Hong Kong after all these years.

4: The showcourt at Hallamshire was named after you a few years ago. That must have been a special day as well.

They named it after me in 2010! They did it when I was ranked number 2 in the world; I don't think they expected me to get any higher!

5: As a seasoned traveller in the world of squash, how do you rate the Canary Wharf tournament?

I really love the vibe at Canary Wharf and it's one of, if not the best, atmospheres on tour, especially from the very first day. I was struggling around that time last year so excited to try and put on a better show for the Canary Wharf crowd this year

6: Lee Drew is launching a programme on behalf of the PSA to investigate various issues surrounding refereeing. What do you think of the initiative? And have you been asked for any input?

A: Lee has been canvassing opinion, which is good, and I'm sure it will be a good appointment. I think it’s important that the players take greater responsibility too to improve the watchability of our sport. Standards have to improve all round.

7: I notice you are not playing the forthcoming El Gouna tournament in Egypt. Any reason why?

A: I loved going to El Gouna in 2012 and had a great time there. However we have had a busy start to the year and, with the Commonwealth Games coming up in July, I felt it was important to take some downtime in April to aid the longevity of my year and so I can peak for Glasgow.

8: Some feel squash's 2020 Olympic bid is dead; others claim it is still very much alive. What's your view on the whole scenario - without spending all day on the subject!

I haven't got my hopes up too high but if there is anything we can do, no matter how small, we should be prepared to do it. If we are still in the conversation then it is positive for the future, especially with the new IOC President.

9: The squash fraternity (and your MP, Nick Clegg) really got behind you last year to support you in the run-up to the BBC Sports Personality Of The year Show. That must have given you a nice, warm glow.

I didn't go to SPOTY last year unfortunately. It was reported in some quarters that I had boycotted due to the lack of recognition for squash but that couldn't be further from the truth. I was actually in Jersey with good friend Nick Taylor on an exhibition weekend that was booked in well in advance before I even knew about the Sports Personality dates. I'm sure they didn't miss me too much!

10: Random question - how do you prefer to spend your time after checking-in at airports and waiting for your international flights?

A: In the business lounge! Although it's not often that our class of travel matches up!

11: Congratulations from the whole Canary Wharf team on the announcement that you and Esme have a baby on the way later this year. Obviously there are plenty of England team-mates who can offer advice. I saw you asking for advice on Twitter. What was the best answer?

Thank you. The response was overwhelming but we are both aware there is a long way to go. There was a lot of people mentioning Calpol. I had to ask Esme what that was!

Thank you, Nick. We look forward to seeing you at the East Wintergarden on day one of the first round.

[ Matthew 11points ] Clyne 11points ] Rodriguez 11points ] Darwish 11points ] Mosaad 11points ] Ghosal 11points ]

Matthew 11points

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