19 June 2010


Let's say, historically there are 7 great squash nations: Egypt, England, France, Australia, Pakistan, Malaysia and Canada. These nations have produced at least one world number ones each and they keep producing players regularly inside the world top 50. Outside of these countries, it is really tough to come through to the highest levels. First of all, there won't be many great coaches around, and secondly you will face the lack of serious training partners. Nevertheless, some guys have made it through and managed to become the lonely representatives of their nations in the top 50: Borja Golan from Spain, Laurens Jan Anjema of Holland, Olli Tuominen from Finland, Simon Rosner from Germany, Nicolas Mueller from Switzerland, Mark Krajcsak from Hungary, Rafael Alarcon from Brazil, Julian Illingworth from the USA (even though newly joined by Gilly Lane) and Davide Bianchetti from Italy.We are going to have a look at each of them in the near future. Let's start with Borja Golan, who has reached the highest ranking of them all. He got to world number 10 in September 2009, and basically at the same time suffered a serious injury. He now is back and starts to win again all the smaller tournaments that he has to go through because of his dropped rankings. Golan proves that you can make it through to a very high level even if technically - let's say body language wise - you are totally out of the conventional patterns. Look at his backswing, the way he waits for his opponent's shot, the way he lounges to the ball. Everything is strange, though still accurate and effective. I guess it's above all in the head, and only after comes the body(language).