The Game

The actual origins of Squash seem to me to be a bit vague; there are  several excellent, well researched books, Rex Bellamy c.1978, John Horrey c.1979 & James Zug c.2005 that are essential reading.   The 1st written account about “Squash Racquets” by Somerville Gibney an old boy of Harrow appeared in The Boys Own Paper on June 9 1894.  Eustace Miles a prolific writer, traveller and all round sportsman wrote the 1st book on Squash published 1903.               

The impact of the Khan family of Pakistan since the 1950s is incredible,  Dicky Rutnagurs book “Khans Unlimited” c.1997  shows the family tree and describes the influence of this remarkable family.       

Suffice to say Squash is the son of Rackets , the evolution from Rackets to Squash appears to have occurred at the Harrow School near London in the late 1850s, the 1st court being built there in 1864.  The game then spreading via the British military and diplomatic service to their colonies and other parts of the then English speaking world.

Probably the  most important development in the past 50 yrs was the American decision to change to the international size court and soft ball in the early 1990s. The popularity of the game in the US has soared since, with Amanda Sohby at 16,  becoming the 1st American in 2010, to win a world title .   The Prizemoney now available to Professional players at the larger tournaments is finally becoming appropriate to their skills and effort

 

Where Squash began, Harrow School London.     Original page of London Illustrated News    Feb 8 1862 showing boys hitting up against exterior wall of Rackets Court