THE B I G CANARY WHARF INTERVIEW 11 POINTS WITH DARYL SELBY
The world No.11 talks to ALAN THATCHER
1: How is your fitness coming into Canary Wharf?
My fitness is not too bad coming into the tournament. I have had different issues with my feet and blisters the whole of this season which has been extremely frustrating. I hope we have finally got it all under control, and I have changed to the new Adidas shoes which have been great so far.
2: You had a great run at the ToC earlier this year, beating Karim Darwish, Simon Rosner and Marwan El Shorbagy to reach the semi-finals. Would you rate that week as a career highlight?
That was definitely a career highlight but also one of the most frustrating nights of my career. I played well all week and beat 3 great players to make my first Major semi-final only to then not be able to compete 100% against James in the semis. All I wanted to be able to do was run about in front of an amazing crowd in an iconic venue against one of the best players in the world but wasn’t able to. Very frustrating as that’s why we all put the hours of blood, sweat and tears in.
3: As good as winning the Nationals last year?
No not as good as winning the nationals! I play to win and there is no better feeling that winning a tournament, let alone one where you beat the World number 1 and World Champion!
4: You didn’t play the North American Open because you were moving house: All settled now?
No not all settled yet! We have the keys but are making some improvements before we actually move all our stuff in. It’s all well over budget thanks to my beautiful wife’s (she’s an interior designer ) expensive taste and if I don’t win this tournament I’m gonna have to start selling my limbs!
5: I hear your Mum and Dad (Paul and Karen) have also moved house recently. How is life for them in the wilds of eastern Essex?
Yes mum and dad have moved into the deepest most scenic parts of Essex and are absolutely loving it. They have a B&B ( Middiford Barn) and offthewallsports which they run from there and keeps them both very busy! #plug
6: There are lots of Selbys in squash. Please tell us a little about your siblings.
Lauren is my little sister and is currently ranked 44 in the WSA rankings. She is a supremely talented squash player and an amazing coach. If we could merge her lob and drop with my length and movement we’ve have a seriously good hybrid player!! My little brother Elliot is a good squash player, and is now a very good racketball player. He works for the WSA and is putting a lot of hard work in to help raise the profile of the women’s game.
I love it! It’s a chance for all my family and friends to get to see me play live. It’s a superb venue and it’s only 40 minutes from home, perfect. The effort Tim, Peter, Angus and Alan put in every year is remarkable along with all the volunteers they do a wonderful job.
8: Last year, after the World Team Championships, the Egyptian coach said some rather uncomplimentary things about the development of English players. What are your thoughts on that?
Did he?! Well the English all have a great respect for the Egyptian players, young and old, it’s a shame he doesn’t have the same respect. I hope one day a team of young English players will make him eat his words! I know if I was a youngster hearing that it would only inspire me more to put the extra work in. I believe we have the best coaches in the world and if you go onto my official Facebook page there is a blog on there with some more thoughts.
9: Taking that debate further, who do you predict will be the new crop of English players making an impact at the top of the game in the next few years?
Well us English always develop a little later, but I often hit with Charles Sharpes and Ben Coleman who are two talented, hard-working youngsters. Adrian Waller, Joe Lee and Olivier Pett are all coming through strongly and have all had some good results recently. I watched James Earles and Adam Auckland play recently and was impressed by both of them, but they are only just out of juniors and still have lots to learn but look like they both have the right attitude to do well.
I’m sure I will be watching and will be cheering on our British Athletes. I was ‘unlucky’ enough not to get any tickets in the ballot. I think we have our best chance ever of getting into 2020 and although i don’t have any ideas, I am willing to do almost anything if it will help!
11: If you won the Lottery tomorrow, what would you do for squash?
As much as I could!
Daryl, many thanks and good luck next week.