James Zug

Cathedral Hall, with its stained glass windows, was the site of the
2016 Windy City Open.

Take the Elevator: The Windy City Soars to New Heights

by James Zug A couple of indelible images from the 2016 Windy City Open remain in the squash frontal lobe. The “I don’t believe it, that is a joke, an absolute joke,” sequence at 7-5 in the fourth game of Mathieu Castagnet & Daryl Selby’ s second-round match. If you are a reader of this […]

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The Ferocity of His Velocity: Gregory Gaultier Finally Wins the World Title

By James Zug When Gregory Gaultier won the 2015 Men’s World Squash Championships, the scene was perhaps as dramatic a moment as we have ever seen at the forty-year-old event. Gaultier was avenging nine years of agony. The finals of the 2006 World Open, held in front of the Pyramids of Giza, was the original, […]

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SquashBond Promotes Bonds of Friendship in Israel

By James Zug It sounds deceptively simple. Put two kids in a squash court and let them play. Nothing is simple in Israel. History, religion, politics impinge—disruptively—on every aspect of life. “Back in 2012, I was talking with Variv Bloomberg at a tournament and we got the idea of trying to help kids in Israel,” […]

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How to be a Good Squash Parent: A Look at New Books

By James Zug The Winning Parent: A Parent’s Guide for the Journey of Competitive Sport—A System for Winning Now and Forever with Your Children in Sport By Daniel Massaro (New York: Mairs & Shaw Publishing, 2015) Last year Danny Massaro published this important book about parenting and sports. A Brit in his early forties, Massaro […]

Have Racquet, Will Travel: Mike Lewis Vagabond Squash Pro

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Amanda Sobhy’s Miracle on 42nd Street

by James Zug In January 2010 just before the men’s final of the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions, two teenaged girls from New York stepped out onto the portable glass court in Grand Central Terminal played a quick exhibition match. The taller girl won 3-1. Her name was Amanda Sobhy. Six years later Sobhy again […]

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Good Literary Length: Three New Books

Good Literary Length: Three New Books By James Zug Trading Secrets: Squash Greats Recall Their Toughest Duels Rod Gilmour (Durrington, England: Pitch Publishing, 2015) Oral history books are notoriously unreliable. What one person remembers might not jib with the facts, and memories tend to fade and rust over time. But oral histories also draw you, […]

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The Open Story

  by James Zug Parity is the watchword at the Delaware Investments United States Open. Two years ago, the national championship became the first major in the squash world to have equal prize money for men and women. Ironically, one of the complaints during the move to parity in 2013, among some hidebound conservatives, was […]

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The Maestro Moves On

By James Zug Amr Shabana was never absurdly dominant. The Maestro wasn’t like Jahangir Khan going five and a half years without a loss, or Heather McKay not losing a game in sixteen years. Shabana won one match in five and another in four en route to his last major, the 2014 Tournament of Champions. Even in his prime, it was so. In Bermuda […]