Matthew's Historic British Open Success To Inspire England's World Title Bid
19 Sep 2006
England national squash coach David Pearson believes that Monday's historic success by Nick Matthew in the Dunlop British Open will inspire England's women in next week's Women's World Team Championship in Canada.
The 26-year-old from Sheffield became the first home-grown Englishman to win the world's most prestigious squash title for 67 years. A member of the England quartet which won the men's world team championship in Pakistan last December, Matthew recovered from 0-4 down in the deciding game of the final to upset France's world No3 Thierry Lincou 11-8, 5-11, 11-4, 9-11, 11-6 in 82 minutes.
In an emotional speech after his breakthrough win on the all-glass court at the University of Nottingham, Matthew paid tribute to the supporters from his clubs (Hallamshire in Sheffield and nearby Duffield in Derbyshire), his family, and the England Squash team including his coaches and Physios.
"The enormity of it hasn't sunk in yet - but most of my thoughts at this moment are for the people who have helped me get here," said the Yorkshireman.
David Pearson said: "Nick has put in an enormous amount of work to get himself to this position - he made a total commitment to the training preparation. He has been extremely disciplined, and well-focussed in every aspect of his game, which is a huge credit to him.
"The success is a real testament to the World Class Performance Programme over the past few years."
England are overwhelming favourites to win the 2006 WSF Women's World Team Championship, which will take place in Edmonton, Alberta, from 24-30 September. Five-times winners of the title since 1985, England will be hoping to recapture the trophy the team last won in 2000 - in Sheffield!.
The 2006 England squad will comprise Tania Bailey, the 26-year-old world No7 from Stamford in Lincolnshire; Vicky Botwright, the 29-year-old world No5 from Manchester; Jenny Duncalf, the 23-year-old world No6 from Harrogate in Yorkshire; and Alison Waters, the 22-year-old world No10 from Southgate in London.
"Nick's win will give the whole squad a real boost - there'll be a real 'feel-good' factor because of him," said Pearson.
"Being favourites puts added pressure on us - so we can't afford to slip up in any way.
"We'll all be thinking about what Nick achieved when we're in Edmonton," added the national coach.