PSA Heralds Return of US Open in Chicago
Following the success of last year’s Sweet Home Chicago Open — the first professional squash tournament in the USA to be held outdoors — Chicago will host the 2009 US Open Squash Championship, from 2-6 September.
Action in the Professional Squash Association World Tour 5-star event will take place on an all-glass court sited at Pioneer Court, between Tribune Tower and the Chicago River.
While Chicago is bidding to host the 2016 Olympic Games, Squash is also one of seven sports currently being considered for addition to the 2016 Games. The sport is played in more than 150 countries by an estimated 20 million people.
“We are delighted that the US Open is back on the PSA World Tour - and its staging in Chicago is perfect both for the city and the sport’s Olympic aspirations,” said PSA COO Lee Beachill. “The short list of Olympic sports will be narrowed to two by mid-August, and a tournament of this calibre held in a possible host city is sure to assist in the final push Squash would need to make it into the Games.”
Based on the success of the 2008 Sweet Home Chicago Open, held at the same location, the US Open will increase the prize fund to $52,500. Organisers hope that this will ensure that many of the top players in the world - from last year’s champion Peter Barker, the world number seven from England, to US-based Australian David Palmer, the world No6 - will compete on this iconic stage.
Event Director Imran Nasir noted: “With the intersection of squash and Chicago’s bid for the 2016 Games, combined with the US Open title, this year’s event looks to be that much more impressive in scope.”
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