All posts by SDA Pro Tour

Inaugural SDA Combine Attracts Top Prospects to Pro Tour

(Back row, l-r): Clive Leach, Rob Hong, Alex Grayson, Ryan Mullaney, Julian Kirby, Hameed Ahmed, Omar El Kashef, Travis Judson Manek Mathur (Front row, l-r): Graham Bassett, Andrew McGuinness, Le Roy Leong, Yasser El Halaby, Adam Perkiomaki, Omar Sobhy, Duncan Maxwell

A dozen top college graduates and singles professionals convened at the Apawamis Club to take part in the inaugural SDA Pro Tour combine, Saturday June 10, in Rye, New York.

The first event of its kind aimed to expose experienced singles players to professional-level hardball doubles in hopes of attracting future competitors to the SDA Pro Tour.

“The SDA Board of Directors realized how difficult it is for newcomers to join the tour,” said Graham Bassett, SDA Pro Tour Director. “The purpose of the SDA Combine is to remove some of the roadblocks from joining. Participants are given a chance to earn SDA points, receive coaching from the game’s best, and play some high quality matches. They are also introduced to a pool of prospective partners in the same position as themselves and given a feel for the comradery of the tour. This year’s pool was exceptional. They were all enthusiastic and there was some terrific talent. The future of the tour looks bright!”

World No. 1 Manek Mathur, defending world champion Clive Leach and Travis Judson coached the assigned teams as they competed in three matches over the course of the day.

“The energy and enthusiasm at Apawamis was contagious,” Mathur said. “It was great to see such powerful singles resumes battle it out and be so receptive to advice and constructive criticism. I think this was a great idea for the growth of the SDA and the tour is headed in the right direction. The level of potential was extremely high for all the guys that played. If all these guys go back to the drawing board and spend some time on court this summer, we might see some new names in the top rankings next season.”

Leach, a veteran of both the ISDA and SDA eras for more than a decade, praised the format and goal of attracting new players to the tour.

“The players really responded well to our coaching and advice, and I felt there was really good intensity from all players,” Leach said. “Some had more experience than others, but overall they really did try and execute what we were asking of them. This format worked really well and I hope to see this type of event again soon. This is definitely the way forward to attracting and encouraging more players to this great game. Personally, I enjoyed the day sharing my knowledge to the next generation of players.”

Heights Casino professional and first place finisher Omar El Kashef said his doubles game improved over the course of the day thanks to the professional coaching exposure.

“One of the amazing things about squash doubles is that every time I play with or against someone new, there is a different perspective that I wasn’t even considering,” El Kashef said. ” I spoke to my partner Julian a lot before and during the match. We worked together on finding the harmony we aimed for. Also, Manek and Travis were watching every single point. They made sure they talked to us between games and matches. It was very good to hear their constructive feedback on how to adjust our game to hardball doubles instead of playing ‘singles in the doubles court.'”

“I would like to thank Graham and the SDA for this tremendous idea,” Mathur added. “I want to encourage all prospective players to mark the next SDA combine on their calendars as it was a great opportunity for all those that attended.”

For all results visit the SDA Combine page. View images on the SDA SmugMug page.

Results and Teams:
1st – Julian Kirby (USA, Harvard)/Omar El Kashef (EGY)
2nd – Adam Perkiomaki (USA, Rochester)/Duncan Maxwell (CAN, St. Lawrence)
3rd – Omar Sobhy (USA, George Washington)/Hameed Ahmed (FIN, Rochester)
4th – Leroy Leong (Malaysia)/Ryan Mullaney (USA, F&M)
5th – Rob Hong (CAN)/Andrew McGuinness (USA, Navy)
6th – Yasser El Halaby (EGY, Princeton)/Alex Grayson (NZL)

2017 World Squash Doubles Championships Registration Open

For the first time, St. Louis, Missouri, will host the 2017 World Squash Doubles Championships, September 21-24, at the Racquet Club of St. Louis and Missouri Athletic Club.

Open and age divisions registration is now open on

The event will feature the best professional teams from around the world competing in Men’s, Women’s, and Mixed divisions. Additionally, all amateur players are encouraged to get in on the fun. Men’s A, Women’s B, a full slate of age groups and Mixed 35+ are all open for play. All teams must represent the same country.

The twelfth biennial edition of the championships, featuring Men’s, Women’s and Mixed events and organized by the Squash Doubles Association (SDA) and Women’s Squash Doubles Association (WSDA) Pro Tours under the auspices of the World Squash Federation.

England’s John Russell & Clive Leach are expected to defend the Men’s title they won in 2015. It was also an English pair, Suzie Pierrepont & Carrie Hastings, who claimed the Women’s title in the same championships, while Canadians Viktor Berg & Stephanie Hewitt are the defending Mixed champions.

“St. Louis has a rich history of promoting squash in the U.S., having hosted the U.S. National Championships in 1950, 1960, 1968, 1977, 1985, 1992, 2000, 2006 and 2013,” said Michael Puertas, Head Squash Professional of the Racquet Club of St. Louis. “We are well prepared and proud to play host to the 2017 World Doubles Squash Championship.”

“We are delighted to welcome the World Championship Doubles to St Louis,” added Adam Bews, Head Squash Professional at Missouri Athletic Club. “The Missouri Athletic Club and Racquet Club of St. Louis members have been hugely supportive of squash and doubles every year and we are so happy to be able to host this for them at their home clubs. St Louis has become one of the most popular destinations for the Doubles tour and we cannot wait to have all of the pros back in September.”

June 2017 Rankings

1-Jun Name Country Tournaments Average 1-May
1 Damien Mudge Australia 10 4044.643 1
1 Manek Mathur India 10 4044.643 1
3 Mike Ferreira England 10 2914.286 3
3 Yvain Badan Switzerland 11 2914.286 3
5 Chris Callis U.S.A. 9 2535.417 5
6 John Russell England 11 2466.071 6
7 Scott Arnold Australia 9 2400.000 9
8 Jonny Smith England 10 2221.429 7
9 Viktor Berg Canada 8 2208.333 8
10 Matt Jenson Australia 10 2126.786 10
11 Bernardo Samper Colombia 11 1791.071 11
12 Baset Chaudhry Pakistan 10 1642.857 13
13 Raj Nanda Australia 12 1635.156 12
14 Will Mariani Canada 6 1452.500 19
15 Imran Khan U.S.A. 11 1428.571 14
16 Clive Leach England 9 1370.833 16
17 Greg Park U.S.A. 12 1356.250 15
18 Freddie Reid Canada 14 1280.556 17
19 Graham Bassett U.S.A. 15 1180.313 18
20 Bobby Burns U.S.A. 9 1150.521 20


Complete Ranking List

May 2017 Rankings

1-May Name Country Tournaments Average 1-Apr
1 Damien Mudge Australia 10 4044.643 2
1 Manek Mathur India 10 4044.643 1
3 Mike Ferreira England 10 2914.286 3
3 Yvain Badan Switzerland 11 2914.286 3
5 Chris Callis U.S.A. 9 2535.417 10
6 John Russell England 10 2246.429 8
7 Jonny Smith England 10 2221.429 9
8 Viktor Berg Canada 8 2208.333 5
9 Scott Arnold Australia 8 2181.250 6
10 Matt Jenson Australia 10 2126.786 7
11 Bernardo Samper Colombia 10 1791.071 12
12 Raj Nanda Australia 11 1721.429 13
13 Baset Chaudhry Pakistan 10 1642.857 11
14 Imran Khan U.S.A. 10 1428.571 16
15 Greg Park U.S.A. 11 1371.429 14
16 Clive Leach England 8 1363.021 15
17 Freddie Reid Canada 13 1231.944 19
18 Graham Bassett U.S.A. 15 1169.063 23
19 Will Mariani Canada 5 1168.500 18
20 Bobby Burns U.S.A. 9 1150.521 17


Complete Ranking List

Mudge Extends Kellner Cup Record to Ten Titles; Mathur Marks Maiden Title on Home Court

l-r: Peter Kellner, Manek Mathur, Damien Mudge, George Kellner, Jonny Smith, Chris Callis.

Seventeen years since claiming the inaugural Kellner Cup in 2000 with Gary Waite, Damien Mudge earned a record tenth title in the twelfth staging of the biennial $50,000 tournament co-hosted in New York City by the Union Club, Racquet & Tennis Club and University Club. Racquet & Tennis Club head professional and left-waller Manek Mathur adds his name to the Kellner Cup for the first time alongside Mudge on his home R & T court.

The full main draw of sixteen teams largely played out according to seeding save for one major quarterfinal upset that saw John Russell & Viktor Berg beat two seeds Mike Ferreira & Yvain Badan 15-8, 7-15, 15-14, 15-13.

Australian four seeds Matt Jenson & Scott Arnold fought off a first-round scare against one of the surprise teams of the season, Bobby Burns & James Bamber, coming back from two games down to reach the quarterfinals in five—the only main draw five-gamer of the weekend.

The tour bids Andres Vargas farewell after the Colombian reached the main draw with fellow Trinity graduate Randy Lim, eventually bowing out against Mathur & Mudge. Vargas returns to his native Colombia this summer before relocating to Madrid, Spain in the fall where he will pursue a business degree.

The tournament culminated with a packed gallery for the final Monday night at the Racquet & Tennis Club. For the first final in tournament history, all three host clubs were represented by their head professionals in Mathur (R&T), Mudge (University Club) and Smith (Union Club).

The top seeds emphatically captured their eighth title of the season, defeating Callis & Smith 15-8, 15-12, 15-7, completing their tournament run without dropping a game all weekend.

“This is obviously a very special tournament for all of us,” Mudge said. “It’s special to have your R&T head pro Manek, Jonny from the Union Club, myself, and someone like Chris Callis all on court in the final is remarkable, and hasn’t happened before.”

Mudge’s incredible record of ten titles now spans seventeen years and four partners: six with Gary Waite (2000, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2005, 2006), one with Viktor Berg (2008), two with Ben Gould (2013, 2015) and now his first with Mathur.

“A big shout out to the Kellners, they are such a class act,” Mudge said. “I’ve known George for nearly twenty years, and what they’ve done professionally for squash, and personally, from the smallest to the largest things. Gary Waite reached out to George back in 2000 about starting this event, so thank you so much George for leading the charge ever since and starting this great tradition.”

The final marked the end of season for both Callis & Smith, who sit out of the two remaining events, the Tavern Club Invitational and Buffalo Club Pro Doubles. The new partnership enjoyed a successful season having frequently reached semifinals, and making three final appearances at the PDC Cup, Baltimore Cup and Kellner.

“Congrats to Damien and Manek, they were so good tonight,” Smith said. “As everyone mentions, Damien is so phenomenal and has his name everywhere and so many times. He’s an incredible athlete on court, and great guy off court. Manek, you are so young, I can’t imagine the future you have ahead of you. It was really special for the three head pros to be on court together tonight, it’s an amazing achievement. Thanks to my partner, Chris. We’ve had an amazing season together and thanks to the Kellners for making all of this happen.”

Mathur’s status on the tour has drastically changed since his Kellner Cup final loss against Mudge & Gould in 2015. Since that final, Mathur has taken up both Gould’s former position as the Racquet & Tennis Club head professional and as Mudge’s partner.

“When you start playing doubles you hear about the Kellner Cup, and by far it’s the one event that you want your name on. I’m absolutely honored to have my name on there with players like Damien, Ben Gould, Gary Waite and all of the legends of squash doubles. Thanks to the SDA, we have a lot of board members here. The brain power behind this board is just tremendous, and the game has grown so much in the past five years thanks to them.”

Mathur & Mudge will aim to end their season with a ninth title out of ten tournaments this weekend in Cleveland at the Tavern Club Invitational.

“Chris and Jonny did well to get to the final, so congrats to them on a great tournament,” Mathur said. “Last but not least, thanks to my partner, Damien. Every event you go to, you see his name on every wall—and not just once. It’s an absolute pleasure playing with you, I’ve grown so much on and off the court this season playing with you so thanks so much for this season.”

The penultimate event of the season, the $35,000 Tavern Club Invitational, will take place this weekend April, 27-29.