The twenty-first annual World Squash Day was celebrated in style in the U.S.
The heart of the celebration was at the Arlen Specter US Squash Center. It was there that the finals of the 2022 U.S. Open Squash Championships presented by Truist were held, with Nouran Gohar of Egypt and Diego Elias of Peru capturing the titles in the forty-ninth edition of the American national open championship in front of a sell-out crowd. In addition, the 2022 U.S. Skills Levels Championship were in full swing.
US Squash-accredited tournaments across the country celebrated World Squash Day: Philadelphia, Detroit, Houston, New York, Santa Clara, Baltimore, Greenwich, Richmond, Cleveland and Boston all hosted events. In total, 1,419 matches were played on World Squash Day in the U.S.
US Squash also promoted U.S. Open watch parties, encouraging clubs to host clinics and exhibitions wrapped around tuning into the Open finals on SquashTV.
WSD has a deep connection to the U.S. It was originally launched in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Many squash players died that day in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington. One notable person was Derek Sword, a twenty-nine year old and avid squash player from Scotland who was based at the New York Athletic Club. Sword worked as an equity sales analyst on the 89th floor of the South Tower of the World Trade Center. Ten days before the attacks, he had gotten engaged to be married.
In January 2002, a group of New York and British friends honored Sword by hosting a memorial match in London. This event led to the creation of World Squash Day. Each year since 2002, WSD events have taken place across the globe—exhibitions, clinics, publicity stunts, tournaments—that expose the game to new people and sustain and deepen a love of the game for those already involved.