Exciting new talents & events will make their mark on the PSA World Tour next season

August 10 2023

As the new 2023/24 squash season looms, several talented young players have the potential to challenge the top players and make waves on the PSA World Tour and injecting excitement into major events as they look to ascend the PSA World Rankings and remarkable strides on the international squash circuit.

Youssef Ibrahim has encountered setbacks due to injuries but is set to capitalise on a point-free start to the season, aiming for a swift return to the PSA World top 20. Victories over many of the top players underline the potential of Youssef Ibrahim to triumph on any given day.

Amina Orfi, Egypt's 16-year-old squash sensation, has already made her mark with dominant junior wins and numerous wins on the PSA Challenger Tour. Her success at PSA World Tour events, like the Squash On Fire Open, have showcased her prowess against established competitors and her inclusion in the upcoming PSA Platinum World Tour events reflects her rising star status.

Balazs Farkas from Hungary is currently ranked World No.51 and possesses court finesse and a dedication to improvement. Training alongside World No.5 Paul Coll augurs well for his fitness, a key factor in longer matches. Prowess combined with enhanced fitness could lead help Balazs Farkas achieve significant upsets.

Sivasangari Subramaniam from Malaysia has rebounded from an injury-induced hiatus. Her return to form at the PSA Manchester Open after a car crash demonstrated her resilience. With no points to defend, Sivasangari Subramaniam is poised to ascend the rankings once again.

Karim Abdel Gawad, a resolute figure in the Egyptian constellation, beckons attention. His very return to the squash court last season, doubted by many due to a lingering heel injury, has astounded critics. The echoes of his triumphant 2016 World Championship victory reverberate anew.

Emerging from the sidelines that sidelined him from May 2022 to March 2023, the resurgence of Karim Abdel Gawad at the PSA Black Ball Squash Open and Canary Wharf Squash Classic marked a triumphant return. Although beaten by the likes of Mohamed ElShorbagy and Paul Coll, his mettle shone brilliantly. A triumphant campaign at the Optasia Championships saw him conquer the formidable Diego Elias and Youssef Soliman on his path to reclaiming a title, ending a year-long drought.

Karim Abdel Gawad again defied the odds at the PSA World Championships in Chicago where his path to the final defied the odds. Four top 12 ranked opponents fell before his resolute charge, culminating in a hard-fought final, ultimately yielding to Ali Farag's prowess. A recurring theme played at the PSA Manchester Squash Open, as Karim Abel Gawad clinched consecutive finals, bowing to the indomitable Ali Farag once again.

A phoenix reborn, Karim Abdel Gawad strides into the top 12 anew. Shielded from point defenses in the season's early phase, the 'Baby-Faced Assassin' exudes an air of menace that the top 10 shall keenly feel. An ascent towards the world's top five by the year's start appears a plausible prophecy.

Satomi Watanabe, a star that illuminated the previous season's skies, commands attention. Japan's premier squash player vaults into prominence, securing the No. 18 world ranking. Her sights are set higher, targeting the elusive top 10 echelon in the forthcoming season.

Underpinned by athleticism and aggressive volleys, Satomi Watanabe plays an audacious which delivered a trail of success last season, including quarter-final berths in the Hong Kong Squash Open event, along with spirited runs to the semi-finals in the PSA Manchester Open and the Carol Weymuller Open.

The stage is set for a Satomi Watanabe ascent. With a promising draw in the season-opening Paris Squash Open, her journey towards the top 10 seems destined to accelerate sooner than anticipated.

Mohamed Abouelghar, a luminary who triumphed over a 13-month shadow cast by a knee injury, emerges resolute. His triumphant return at the Hong Kong Football Club Squash Open ended a prolonged hiatus from PSA World Tour events. Breathing fire, Mohamed Abouelghar pushed elite contenders including Diego Elias and Ali Farag to the precipice in thrilling encounters at the Motor City Open and Black Ball Open. The PSA World Squash Championships in Chicago witnessed his tenacity, narrowly missing the quarter-finals by a whisker against Tarek Momen.

The prowess of Mohamed Abouelghar remains undeniable, a force poised to vault towards the top 20 or possibly the top 10. Unburdened by the need to defend points, he strides into events, a "Bullet" aimed at his rivals. A thorough pre-season regimen positions him to cast a shadow over the PSA World's top 30.

Aira Azman, a prodigious 18-year-old from Malaysia, awaits her turn on the global stage. Seated at World No.60, her journey is one of promise. Eclipsing the confines of ranking, Azman's trajectory reveals glimpses of brilliance.

With a World No.50 peak and a triumphant win at the KCC PSA Challenge Cup in Hong Kong, her resolve is palpable. A sterling performance at the Cannon Kirk Gillen Markets Irish Squash Open showcased her mettle, narrowly yielding in the final. The PSA World Championships bore witness to her ascent, qualifying through a pre-qualification event and tangling with the experienced World No.21 Melissa Alves.

Inspirations drawn from encounters with the top 30 incite Azman's pursuit of excellence. With abundant opportunities for advancement, the horizon is ripe for the Azman sisters to grace World Tour events in tandem.

As the new squash season beckons, the determination and potential of these players promise an electrifying PSA World Tour.

The forthcoming 2023/24 squash season promises to be a watershed campaign in the history of the PSA World Tour annals.

A fitting prelude beckons as the Paris Squash Alpine, the first major PSA World Tour event to be held in France since the 1994, unfurls its grandeur from the 27th August to 2nd September across several resplendent venues within the iconic French capital. The Palais de Tokyo, nestled beneath the gaze of the Eiffel Tower, emerges as the stage for the all-glass court spectacle. A cadre of local luminaries aspires to bask in the glory of this historic French squash spectacle.

The Paris Squash Alpine earmarks the season's dawn for most contenders. A notable exception resides in male players partaking in the PSA Windsor Squash Cup in Canada. This season curtain-raiser historically ushers intriguing outcomes, with players yet to fully shake off their off-season rust. The saga of last season's Qatar Squash Classic underscores this narrative, wherein early rounds bore witness to a cascade of top-seed upsets.

The resolute journey of Egypt's Ali Farag commands attention. A knee injury's specter loomed last October, sidelining him till February and relinquishing his World No.1 status. The road to redemption commenced as Ali Farag triumphantly reclaimed the British Open title and clinched the Manchester Squash Open, El Gouna Squash International, and the coveted World No.1 mantle.

The 2023-24 season unveils a canvas where Farag's notable points reside in his CIB Egyptian Open conquest and U.S. Open runner-up finish. His early exit at the Qatar Squash Classic last season and absence from pivotal encounters such as the Hong Kong Squash Open and Tournament of Champions carve a fertile avenue for the reigning World No.1 to embellish his lead atop the rankings.

Charged with momentum from an extensive pre-season regimen, the question resonates: Can his adversaries eclipse Ali Farag in the 2023/24 squash season.

The hallowed grounds of the Qatar Squash Classic bear witness to a poignant resurgence. After an eight-year hiatus, the women's event reclaims its rightful place alongside the men's, as 96 contenders converge on Doha in a quest for the coveted PSA Platinum World Tour titles.

Recollections evoke England's Laura Massaro's triumphant 2015 feat against reigning World Champion Nour El Sherbini. A novel chapter beckons, as an untrodden path to victory promises a new name inscribed on the coveted trophy.

The PSA Qatar Squash Classic serves as a vantage for players to gather vital World Tour points, charting their course towards the culminating PSA World Tour Finals.

Fervent aspirations loom for Mohamed ElShorbagy in his a bid to reclaim World No.1, an endeavor narrowly eluding him in the previous season. The ardor is matched by Paul Coll of New Zealand, eager to amend his previous early exit, and harnessing a renewed charge against Wales' Joel Makin.

The hallowed courts of Khalifa International Tennis & Squash Complex unfurl, bearing witness to a spectacle infused with strategic finesse. The court's cooler confines buoy the artistry of those who seize the front corners.

The triumvirate of women's squash, comprising Nouran Gohar, Nour El Sherbini, and Hania El Hammamy, have etched their supremacy at the very pinnacle of the PSA World Rankings, leaving the coveted World No.4 spot a tantalising prospect for contenders aiming to secure a berth in major event semi-finals.

Joelle King of New Zealand presently holds this coveted rank, a testament to her consistent performance and appearances in later stages of the major PSA World Tour events as well as reaching the semi-finals of the PSA World Championships.

Former occupant of the position, USA's Amanda Sobhy, ceded her place to Joelle King following a comparatively lackluster season, the American's ability to upset the formidable trio was underscored by her notable victories over Hania El Hammamy and Nour El Sherbini last season.

World No.5, Nour El Tayeb, perpetually poses a threat with her dynamic blend of skill and speed. Throughout the years, she has disrupted the top three's dominance. Last season, she secured quarter-final berths in three major events and progressed to the semi-finals in another.

Notably, Nour El Tayeb narrowly missed out on toppling World No.1 Nouran Gohar at the J.P. Morgan Tournament of Champions, succumbing after a fierce five-game encounter in New York. Furthermore, her commendable victory over Nour El Sherbini during the season-ending PSA World Tour Finals showcased her prowess.

Should these three contenders embark on the season with vigor and unwavering conviction in their ability to challenge the established order, we stand poised to witness a dynamic shift in rankings, ripe with opportunities and points awaiting their grasp.

The coming season will witness the Australian Squash Open reentering the World Tour fray with a resounding presence, with the spectacle scheduled from the 8th-12th November in Sydney.

The tournament's arena will be the alluring backdrop of an all-glass court within Sydney's bustling city center, specifically nestled within Martin Place, a bustling shopping enclave. Fondly remembered as a favored tournament of the eminent Ramy Ashour, a two-time victor in 2011 and 2012, the Australian Open's revival invigorates a region starved for World Tour squash action.

This homecoming resonates deeply, given Australia's storied squash legacy. While the nation hosts numerous PSA Challenger Tour events, a PSA World Tour showcase has been long overdue. This revitalised event promises not only to engage fervent fans but also to inspire emerging Australian talents seeking a wellspring of motivation as they ascend the ranks of the sport.

Evident is the tapestry of promise that the 2023/24 PSA squash season unfurls, poised to etch an indelible chapter within the sport's chronicles.