Best of British awaits Matthew

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SHEFFIELD’S Nick Matthew begins his defence of the British National Squash Championships campaign tomorrow night.

Matthew, who recently replaced Yorkshire rival James Willstrop at the top of the world rankings, faces a qualifier in the opening round of the Manchester event.

He is seeded to meet Willstrop, twice winner of the title, in the men’s final.

An abductor injury kept Matthew on the sidelines for two months he returned to action last month and moved above Willstrop in the rankings after beating him in the first ever-all British final of the prestigious PSA World Series Tournament of Champions at Grand Central Station in New York City.

It was Matthew’s first tournament win since he secured his second world title in November.

The 31-year-old, who has lifted the trophy three times; 2006, 2009 and 2010, is expected to lock horns with Guernsey-born Chris Simpson, the world No 52, in the quarter-finals before a potential last four showdown with Daryl Selby, one of his closest pals on the tour.