The New Zealand men’s squash team are ready to hit the court for the WSF Men’s World Team Squash Championship in Washington DC tomorrow morning with their first match against Ireland.
Following a successful appeal to the World Squash Federation seeding panel, the Kiwis were promoted to fourth seeds from fifth and are placed in a group which is winnable for the tournament
New Zealand are one of only two nations to have competed in every event since the inaugural championship in 1967 and have Paul Coll, the world No.5 and the finalist at the recent world championships as top player.
Supporting Coll in the 2019 squad is world No.25 Campbell Grayson and world No.93 Evan Williams, all members of the 2017 squad plus 20-year-old event newcomer Lwamba Chileshe, ranked 158 in the world. Grayson and Chileshe are both at career-high rankings.
New Zealand’s Pool contains ninth seeds Scotland, 18th ranked Ireland and 20th seeds Singapore.
Scotland are the biggest threat to New Zealand winning Pool D. The Scots have two very experienced players in Greg Lobban who has a world ranking of 27 and Alan Clyne at 39.
“It’s a great venue, state of the art facility, a little bit smaller than other world teams events, but still very nice with two glass courts. As a team we’re all keen to get started and are happy being seeded fourth with the pool we are placed in,” said Coll.
New Zealand coach, Glen Wilson also can’t wait to get started. “We have a strong team that can go a long way in this event, but winning our pool and qualifying top eight is our first priority.”
The Kiwis first match is against Ireland on Monday morning with live facebook streaming on the Squash NZ site.
Egypt are seeded to retain the title in the 26th edition of the biennial World Squash Federation championship which will be hosted by US Squash at Squash On Fire, the new state-of-the-art eight-court facility in the US capital from 15-21 December, and will feature 23 nations.
Three times runners-up, New Zealand finished in sixth place in the 2017 championship in France, their best finish for 24 years.