Ellery congratulates White on
winning the National title
Rugby League legend, Ellery Hanley, who, since last year’s English
Open has been present on many squash occasions, is proving to be a major
His friendship with John White is well-founded and
John – the world number 1 – was quick to acknowledge Ellery’s contribution
at the British Closed. Being around Ellery is most definitely a learning
experience, since his knowledge of world class sport, coupled with his
philosophical outlook, makes him compulsive listening.
He is quick to acknowledge the top professionals in squash and, as a
player, he knows what it takes to become top-class. What is more he misses
no opportunity to tell people what a demanding game squash is and how good
the players are.
Recently he took John White and James Willstrop as his guests to
Headingley for the Leeds v Bradford match. Speaking at the pre-match
dinner and then again at half-time in an on the field interview he was
quick to sing the praises of his guests.
So the sell-out Headingley crowd listened to a man they revere telling
them about squash players.
Never have I seen anyone sign so many autographs as Ellery could hardly
take a step without being greeted with affection and respect, and he had a
word for everybody.
Just what a great spectacle Leeds and Bradford provided: superb athletes
playing a sport that preserves standards: sportsmanship, respect for the
referee, and what a treat to be in the crowd of men, women and children
without any of the unseemly aggression that characterises some sports.