On our second blog post from the squash legend Jonah Barrington, we talked about how long the current English professionals need to stay at the top for. Here’s what Jonah had to say…
Jonah: I suppose the big question is how long do these guys have to stay at the top for? We know that James has come through mental hardship during his career and come out the other side now. Nick and James have had this rivalry that’s allowed them to feed off each other. This has fed the motivational factor for other professionals around the world and they have responded. Like Gaultier and Shabana for instance. Really it’s amazing the way the older pros have surprised and prospered over the years.
It could be said that these are the twilight years with it being the best period for them. The prime time has gone but they have all feed off each other. For Nick and James in particular the story has been a transfusion for the game.
So how long can these guys go on for given good health? Well their minds are amazingly strong to pursue sport at the highest level. The question is when will the lessening of the mobility occur and do we have anything coming through the pipeline!? All these top guys are promoting the cause but they won’t be there at 2020.
I think we all know that from the outside when Ramy is fully fit he is definitely the world number 1. But he does have to miss events and falters sometimes due to the old injury syndrome. He’s a maverick of the game. With conditioning and sports science he would prolong the longevity of his career for the 2020 games similar to what Nick and James have shown through their careers.
It’s an amazing testament to the characters of the older guys at the top that they are still at the heart of the game! It’s very rare that they suffer a serious loss in the first rounds. Shabana perhaps more vulnerable but his physical conditioning is better than it’s ever been. He’s a clever guy Shabana with a super squash brain. His racket is something to behold at times and with his renewed interest in physical conditioning he’s covering the court better than he ever has!
Put it like this, it’s an unbelievable act to follow this Willstrop, Matthew, Barker. Even more credit to Peter Barker reaching the status he had. Credit all through for these guys to the way they have handles themselves. With injuries and fluctuations in form and my god I bet the coaches are so grateful.