Last month, on 12 November, American squash had an unnoticed anniversary. It was Monday 12 November 1984 that the finals of the Boston Open were played at the Cyclorama in the South End of the Hub. Mark Talbott v. Jahangir Khan.
I wrote a whole chapter in my 2003 Squash: A History of the Game, about the match. Talbott won 18-16 in the fifth. It took over a hundred minutes. It had classic points—one an eighty-two stroke rally—and incredible drama. For some it was the kind of match only eclipsed by matches like the finals of the recent 2014 men’s world championships.
So where is squash in America now, exactly thirty years later? Will a thousand fans come to watch the finals of a major, portable-court tournament? Yes.
But will it be a riveting contest between an American and a world champion? Not yet. But soon. And chances are it will be a woman playing Mark Talbott’s role.