Tuesday, November 24, 2009


It no secret that squash in Michigan is struggling. The travel leagues are hanging on by a thread for its survival, membership is suffering, tournaments are far and few between. When I first arrived 5 years ago, I was aghast at the state of the Michigan Squash Racquets Association (MSRA). There was a complete lack of cohesion, lack of communication, lack of motivation, lack of basically everything needed to successfully promote and manage the sport and my support of the MSRA was, honestly, negligible to say the least.

But, as the ol’ cliché goes, “there is light at the end of the tunnel”. The MSRA’s new president, Hugh Stalker, has injected some much needed energy into the fray. Many new initiatives have been started which include: signing sponsors; establishing a junior program; holding benefit events; providing favorable pricing on equipment; establishing electronic pay; and a much needed revamping of the website.

Of course, at all means diddly-squat without the support of the actual squash players within Michigan. I appeal to each and every one of you to visit the new and improved website at: http://www.michigansquash.org and register yourselves, and sign-up as an MSRA member. Currently, the cost is only $25 per year, but the MSRA needs every penny to grow, promote, and market the sport – your sport - as much as possible. Your support will contribute to everyone’s success.

Clearly, there is a long way to go. The ball has started rolling and your help is required to keep it moving. Presently, the MSRA is not a recognized association in the eyes of the US Squash Association, (for reasons I will not divulge here) which is, I believe, a great pity. However, Hugh Stalker and the MSRA definitely see the importance and advantage of being a recognized association and doing just that is unquestionably one of the goals. It will, though, take a little time, and patience is required before the things in the MSRA are functioning suitably, properly, and efficiently.

While preaching the importance of support, let’s not forget about US Squash itself. You can visit the US Squash website at http://www.ussquash.com/ (also recently overhauled) for all the squash information nationwide. Signing-up as a US Squash member actually includes membership to the MSRA, and of course comes with added benefits which are too numerous to list here. It is certainly worth the money, and your much appreciated membership fees travel even further and help out not only Michigan Squash, but American Squash. We would all be better off.


The Squashist said...

Joining both the local and national associations is really really important, as i point out here: http://thesquashist.blogspot.com/2009/09/cheap-stupid-or-uninformed.html

One can come up with all sorts of excuses why you don't need to support squash, but they are all ultimately lame. It ain't a lot of money, either!

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