Thursday, January 27, 2011


I'm a big fan of the Tournament of Champions (ToC) and check it out obsessively each year when it rolls into Grand Central Terminal (GCT), a beautiful building from where I have the pleasure of commuting every day.

Unfortunately, this year the ToC hit as I've been suffering from a very stubborn case of bronchitis, so I only went to one match and hacked and coughed my way through it, not really enjoying the experience. (I went with none other than Schumacher, my arch-squash foe.... Grrrrrr. We ate at the Oyster Bar, so I can report that he slurps his oysters. I also saw Teddy C, working the entryway as a volunteer, who refused my bribe to get in free! What kind of a New Yorker is that guy?)

Early on I picked Nick Matthew to win it all, because I think he is in the best shape of all the top players, and he is as on-form as any of them. But he will have to go through Ramy Ashour to get the title, and that will not be easy. The one match I watched was Ashour dismantling the efforts of David Palmer, and the impression I had was that Palmer was nothing more than a gnat buzzing around annoyingly in Ashour's face, until SWAT!.... he was taken care of.

One question that one might fairly ask is whether the current discord that is roiling Egypt might possibly have an effect on Ashour's concentration. Surely he is hearing from friends in Egypt about what is going on, and no matter which way his political sensitivities go, he must be at least concerned. So the Tunisia-like riots must add on yet another layer of complexity for Ashour as he seeks to outdo Matthew in tonight's final.  Good luck to you, Egypt!

Although I have not been able to cover the ToC, a fellow New York City blogger has, and has done a splendid job. Check out this site for some great interviews and photos.

1 comment:

  1. Well, my man Matthew did his best but when Ramy Ashour is on he is unstoppable. And it seems as if any worries about Egypt served not to distract him but to fire him up. Apparently Egypt was indeed on his mind because he dedicated his win to his home country....


Sorry, but due to increasing spam, I've added the Word Verification step. My policy on comments is anything goes, as long as it is about squash and as long as it isn't unnecessarily nasty....