James Zug

The Merger of Hardball and Softball

by James Zug A quarter century ago, the men’s hardball and softball tours merged. On January 1, 1993 the World Professional Squash Association and the International Squash Players Association ceased to exist, replaced by the new Professional Squash Association. The PSA became the sole global association for men’s pro squash. Without the merger, the incredible […]

Teaching the Game: Women & Squash

By James Zug Photography by Michael T. Bello/mtbello.com It was a Sunday in the winter. Chris Brownell was giving squash lessons. She taught all afternoon, working with youngsters, teenagers, adults. She wore a black shirt and black shorts and a big white watch on her freckled wrist. She was encouraging and forceful. “You’d have a […]

Squash in Saudi

In January 2018 the Saudi PSA Women’s Squash Masters was held in Riyadh. The historic $165,000 tournament was the first-ever professional sporting event for women in Saudi Arabia. Nour El Sherbini captured the inaugural event, beating Raneem El Welily a month after losing to her in the finals of the 2017 World Championship. The event […]

Qatar Classic Emulates Tennis

By James Zug The 2017 Qatar Classic was one of the most special tournament in pro squash history. This was not by accident. Since 1992, the Khalifa International Tennis & Squash Complex, in the Al Dafna district of Doha, has hosted a major men’s squash tournament. It was called the Qatar International in the 1990s, […]

Mr. and Mrs. U.S. Open: Trophy Husband, Trophy Wife

By James Zug It was a storybook ending to a rollicking ten-day celebration of squash excellence: Nour El Tayeb and Ali Farag, a married couple, each triumphed to win the 2017 U.S. Open presented by Macquarie Investment Management. It was almost unique in the annals of sports. The most celebrated example was probably the so-called […]

Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes: How to Rethink Your Life

By James Zug When to Jump: If the Job You Have Isn’t the Life You Want By Mike Lewis (New York: Henry Holt, 2018) When we last visited with Mike Lewis with the article “Have Racquet, Will Travel” in our February 2016 issue, Lewis was wrapping up his squash career, having reached a world ranking […]

Flood & Fog: Meadow Mill Celebrates Twenty-Fifth Anniversary

By James Zug A flagship squash facility in Baltimore, Meadow Mill Athletic Club is celebrating the twenty-fifth anniversary this autumn. There will be a week of squash, highlighted by a $5,000 PSA tournament, a junior gold tournament and a fiesta on November 3. That is exactly twenty-five years and a day after Meadow Mill originally […]

My Heart’s Beating Like A Rabbit: Racquet Sports in Film

By James Zug Cinematically, racquet sports are mostly used as a metaphor. The scenes reveal a character’s physical prowess and mental strength or a power struggle between protagonists. Or it is simply about making someone seem like a hapless, ham-handed buffoon. This is easy. Actors are almost always awkwardly uncoordinated. They probably came firmly down […]

National Singles Records Extended in Philly

By James Zug After three years in Charlottesville, the National Singles returned to Philadelphia for a large, exciting and record-extending tournament. The 106th annual championships were hosted by Philadelphia Cricket Club (PCC), with many matches also being played at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy down the street. PCC was also a host site for the national […]