The U.S. Open Squash Championships will have a home in Philadelphia for the next 10 years as the association signed a deal with Drexel University to continue hosting the tournament through 2023.
“It’s our goal to make the Delaware Investments U.S. Open the most prestigious squash championship in the world, to be the first to offer $1 million in prize money, with full parity for men and women,” said Kevin Klipstein, president and CEO of US Squash. “The partnership with Drexel University extends to every facet of the school. This long term agreement with such a vibrant urban institution helps set the course for making the U.S. Open a premier global sports event, hosted right here in Philadelphia.”
Drexel President John A. Fry, who has served on the US Squash Board of Directors since 2010 and was recently named its chairman, has been instrumental in bringing the tournament to the city which was the domestic birthplace of squash in 1904.
“We’re thrilled to extend our partnership with US Squash to keep the biggest squash tournament in the nation right here in Philadelphia, where the sport took root in America,” Fry said. “This has been a tremendous relationship for both Drexel and US Squash, and the benefits to both parties will only grow with the long-term continuity afforded by this agreement.”
The tournament, which is currently in its third year in University City, has seen a steady increase in support since coming to Drexel. The top players in the world have been drawn to Philadelphia to compete for one of the biggest prizes in the professional circuit. This year a $115,000 purse will be up for grabs on both the men’s and women’s sides – marking the first time that equal prize money has been on the line in a tournament of this magnitude.
The Daskalakis Athletic Center, which serves as center stage for the McWil championship glass court, has seen thousands of sports fans and squash enthusiasts from around the country attend the tournament during the last two years. The U.S. Open has been held in 22 different cities since 1954. Philadelphia first hosted the tournament in 1977 and again in 1993 before it returned to the city in 2011 for its run at Drexel.
For more information about the championships visit www.usopensquash.com.