19 May 2011


This is a rally from that famous last match of 2009 in Saudi Arabia which decided who would replace Karim Darwish as the new world #1 in the 2010 January rankings. Beyond the entertainment factor I am referring to this rally for the following reason: according to the Nick Matthew that could have been seen in the last 12 months, I feel like the one shown in the below video is slightly less composed and slightly more hectic in his racquet preparation. I am referring to nuances, but we all know how much the tiniest detail can make the difference, probably in squash more than in any other sport. And especially if you gain general composure, that can allow you to stay calmer and more focused on the court, hence react and think better. However I don't know if the current, more composed Matthew is due to the fact that he has matured mentally or if he became mentally stronger because of the gained composure? Anyway, I find it very remarkable when someone can improve and adjust his game at a relative late stage of his carrier and on the very top of the scale. It's not that he became top20 after having been stuck in the top30, no: he boosted his game, at the age of thirty, to become from an established top5 player the world #1. And on top of that, according to his recent interviews, he is planning to stay there for a couple of years. And indeed, it seams that there is only one guy who could interfere into this project: the one who plays that delicate counter-drop at the end of the below rally.