Willstrop's Wharf Cry

• Canary Wharf Squash Classic • 18th to 22nd March 2013 • London •  








11 with Selby ] 11 with Shorbagy ] Barker wants one Better ] [ Willstrop's Wharf Cry ] 11 with Matthew ] 11 with Grant ]



World number one James Willstrop is “rested and rebooted” after rocking Ramy Ashour in Richmond and is ready to battle for his fourth Canary Wharf Classic title.

Willstrop’s trip to Virginia resulted in a stunning victory over Ashour in the final of the Davenport North American Open.

He is seeded to meet his great rival Nick Matthew in the final at Canary Wharf but he insists he is taking things one match at a time.

He said: “It’s good to have a three-week break between tournaments. You can rest the body a little bit. It’s mentally tough when you play a lot of squash so it’s ideal to have two tournaments back to back and then have a good break in between.

“You can re-set and reboot the body.

“Canary Wharf is a great event and I am looking forward to it. I always enjoy it and it is one of those tournaments you always look forward to because you now you are going to be well looked after. When that happens you usually play better, too.

“It feels great to be back at number one in the March rankings. It’s great to be there and I’m very pleased to be holding that spot.

“I’m feeling comfortable with being in that position and I’m trying to enjoy it. I know other players have suffered some kind of stress but it’s difficult to talk about other people. I just look at the ranking list and feel a wonderful sense of achievement.

“It’s great to be on top of the world and it’s a reward for the work you have put in and the time you have taken to get there.

“From my perspective there are no negatives associated with it.

“I simply want to play my next match as world number one and not number two.

“Some players may have not have felt that way but I don’t know that feeling. As I say, it’s a very positive thing.”

Despite losing 15 times in a row to England team-mate and fellow Yorkshireman Matthew, Willstrop says he is enjoying the competition and feels that their occasionally tempestuous rivalry is good for the game.

He added: “People like to talk about it but in all honesty all I think about is beating the best players. It really is a tough tour and I have a very difficult first round match against my training partner (Saurav Ghosal).

“You can never look beyond that. You can’t go into tournaments thinking about finals. You can only focus on your next match.

“The last two matches we have played, in the final of the Tournament of Champions in new York, and in the final of the National Championships in Manchester, have been two tremendous battles between two Englishmen and two Yorkshiremen.

“I suppose a lot of people find that rivalry is big news, and if we do meet in the final at Canary Wharf then it will be exciting.

“It is a great thing to be involved in and to have such a brilliant rivalry. If it helps to generate publicity for the sport then it’s good for the game.

“I look around and it’s good way to spend your life, but you can never escape the fact that you have to concentrate on doing your job.

“The gaps in standard between the guys in the top 10, 20, 30 and 40 are very small. They are very fine lines and you have to be focused the whole time.”

11 with Selby ] 11 with Shorbagy ] Barker wants one Better ] [ Willstrop's Wharf Cry ] 11 with Matthew ] 11 with Grant ]

Willstrop's Wharf Cry

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