09 October 2010


Tough to see the ball on such an uneven and light surface, so let's concentrate one more time on movement; Nick Matthew and Thierry Lincou are two of the best movers around, even if there are a couple of other players who look more fluid and gentle, as referred  to in our previous post. Lincou has definitely something of a 'rugby player', but this is only valid to define the way his body looks like, in terms of culture of footwork I see him rather similar to a fencer (and not only because of his long knee-socks). I especially recommend to observe his lateral steps, or when he moves diagonally backwards, as in the below rally at 0:30, his path to the ball is composed first by a couple of tiny half-steps-half-leaps, and at the end by a lunge, just as in fencing you would approach your opponent: your feet don't cross, one remains in front of the other all along the path. Of course, Nick Matthew and the other pro players do this similarly, but I somehow feel that Lincou's movement has slightly more discipline, balance and control and he is also slightly more economical and composed than Matthew; or, compared to David Palmer - another example of a great steady mover -  he is slightly more gentle, smoother. I am talking about nuances, but I think they count a lot, as movement is the second most important basic value in squash after the 'reading' of the game. You might object: "And what about the shots themselves?" Of course, the quality of your shot and the shot selection are essential - but you won't have a chance to make an optimal choice of shot and hit a good ball if you firstly don't read the game well (don't notice in time where to go), and secondly don't get to the ball both quickly and economically.