Wright retires from WISPA TourSubscribe
Howard Harding 05 May 2001
ENGLAND No1 Sue Wright, twice a British Open finalist, has decided to retire from the international squash circuit.
After suffering with viral pneumonia for more than eighteen months, Wright made a sensational comeback at last October's British Open, dismissing seeded players in each round before becoming the first qualifier ever to reach the women's final - almost ten years after competing in the 1991 final. Then, in February 2001, she reclaimed the British National title for the fourth time.
Aged 30, Wright reached number three in the world in addition to periods as national number one. A Board Member of the Women's International Squash Players' Association (WISPA) since 1995, she has accumulated 11 WISPA World Tour titles in both North America and Europe since 1996. Her successful senior career followed her captaining the England team which won the World Junior title in 1987.
One legacy of the pneumonia has been the ear problems that have prevented her from flying, thus limiting access to events on the WISPA World Tour. Furthermore, she has had to restrict and plan her exertion periods to maintain her health. Wright plans to continue competing in the UK whenever possible - and, health permitting, will be working towards a possible selection for the Commonwealth Games next year.
"IT HAS been a tough decision to make, and without question I will miss the tour and the people associated with it," said Oxfordshire-based Wright. "But I'm not giving up completely just yet, just being sensible with my health and body."
Wright appropriately crowned her full-time squash-playing career on Thursday by winning the BSPA (British Squash Professionals Association) Prince Grand Prix Finals title - beating compatriot Jenny Tranfield, the world No16, in straight games.
In the men's final, world champion Peter Nicol - now representing England - had his work cut out to overcome Mark Cairns. The match went to a deciding fifth game that Nicol edged 17-14.
RESULTS: Prince Grand Prix Finals, Moonrakers Club, Salisbury, ENG Thursday May 3, 2001
Men's final: Peter Nicol bt Mark Cairns 15-8 10-15 15-12 12-15 17-14 (108 minutes)
Women's final: Sue Wright bt Jenny Tranfield 9-4 10-8 9-5 (35 minutes)