Following the 2018 Canadian Squash Championships in May, eight athletes earned their spot on the Canadian Squad heading to Grand Cayman to compete at the 2018 Senior Pan American Championships from August 26 – September 3. The Men’s Squad is confirmed as follows: Andrew Schnell, Nick Sachvie, Mike McCue & Shawn De Lierre. The Women’s Squad consists of: Danielle Letourneau, Hollie Naughton, Sam Cornett & Nikki Todd. The selection criteria for the Year 3 Pan American Championships Team represents our best players. Year 3 is the Games ‘qualifying and seeding year’ so the goal is to send our strongest team with a view to podium finishes. Therefore, the top 4 male finishers and top 4 female finishers at the Canadian Championships earned their spot on the squad.
Schnell (Calgary) is ranked #110 on the PSA World Tour and earned his spot on the squad by winning the 2018 Canadian Championships Men’s Open. Sachvie (St-Catharines) is ranked #98 on tour and has claimed his spot on Team Canada after placing 2nd at the Canadian Championships in May. Canada’s second highest PSA ranked male player, McCue (Sudbury) is sitting at #97 and placed third at the Canadian Championships, therefore securing his place on the Canadian Squad for the Senior Pan Am Championships. Canada’s top ranked male player is veteran De Lierre (Montreal) ranked at #75 and joins the squad after placing 4th at the Canadian Championships this year.
PSA world #42 Letourneau (Calgary) automatically secured her place by capturing the 2018 title at the Canadian Championships after being a finalist for 2 consecutive years. Naughton (Mississauga), as a runner up this year claimed her spot on the Canadian Squad and is currently ranked #35 on tour. Cornett (Deep River) is Canada’s top ranked female player sitting at #32, she placed third at the Canadian Championships this year, earning her way onto the Canadian Squad. To complete the 4-woman Canadian Squad, Todd (Regina) placed fourth at the Championships in May and her PSA ranking is currently #52.
The Canadian Squad will be lead by Squash Canada’s High Performance Director and former world no. 4 Martin Heath who comes with an extensive background in coaching elite squash worldwide. "I have managed to spend a fair amount of time with a lot of the team over the summer working on technique and movement; it will be interesting to see how everyone competes individually and as a team," said Heath, who is coaching the Canadian Squad for the first time. "I'm quite confident there will be a rise in level this season, and the Pan American Championships is a great starting point to the season to see where we are as a squad. We are looking to be competitive for medals in every event, and certainly looking to pick up Gold in more than one."
The team is in their final stages of training in preparation for the Senior Pan American Championships. Under the guidance of Heath, the athletes will compete against 26 other nations with the hopes of a podium finish. Click here for the historical records of Canadians at the Pan Am Championships. Congratulations to these amazing athletes who we know will represent Canada with honour.
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