90-Seconds With James Willstrop

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 11.24.19 AMWhat was your “welcome to professional squash” moment?
My earliest memory of this was playing Rodney Eyles in the qualifiers of the British Open when I was about 17. He was an influence on me as a kid and I’d seen him play loads at British Opens in years gone by. I was green as grass and managed to win.

If I weren’t a squash player, I’d be…
in a band. I would love to make and perform music with four or five of my best friends. It may be talentless stuff but I’d love it!

Your idol growing up?
One was Jansher Khan. I loved watching his movement around a court. Others were Steve Redgrave, an English rower, and Nicol and Power were big inspirations in squash. I like watching Federer play tennis too.

Favorite place to play a tournament?
New York and London. I feel quite at home in big cities, and I always like it in New York when you’ve just come off court at midnight and you can still find something to eat! There is always plenty to do as well. Playing in England is great because it means there is no jet lag! Which is always a bonus.

If I were Executive Director of WSF for a day, I would…
make everyone play point a rally scoring to 11, across the board. Every single WSF, ESF, PSA and WISPA event should be doing the same thing, then we would all be moving in the right direction.