Squash: Nick Matthew aims to bow out in a blaze of glory

Sheffield ace Nick Matthew . Picture: Steve Line
Sheffield ace Nick Matthew . Picture: Steve Line
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Three-time world champion Nick Matthew has set his sights on ending his playing career on a high.

The 37-year-old announced today his plan to quit squash at the end of the 2017/18 season.

Sheffield-born Matthew said he had been wrestling with the decision for “the best part of 18 months”.

But Matthew, a big Sheffield Wednesday fan, said: “It’s not sad; I’m really excited by the opportunity in my last season.

“I’ve had three world, Commonwealth and British Open titles, so hopefully I can get a fourth of one of those.

“I’m very motivated for this year and there are lots of things I still want to achieve.

“We’ve got the world championships in Manchester in December, and I’ve got some amazing memories of the last time the worlds were held there. Then there are the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in April 2018. It’s one of my favourite events ever. I will always love pulling on that England shirt, and I’ll be doing everything in my power to win a fourth gold medal.

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“Potentially my last tournament ever will be the British Open so what a way to finish, in my home country, competing for one of the most historic titles in squash.

Matthew, who won the world title in 2010, 2011 and 2013, has also thanked fans for their “amazing support” throughout his glittering 20-year career.

He added: “I’ve been playing since the age of eight and have made so many friends around the world; thank you for your support.”

Known as The Wolf, Matthew has spent a total of 19 months at the top of the PSA world rankings.

When he hangs up his racket, Matthew will focus on developing hissquash academies in the UK and USA and expanding his media roles.

Matthew said his big disappointment was failing to compete at an Olympic Games after squash was repeatedly overlooked for inclusion by the International Olympic Committee.

Matthew said: “If there was one thing I could have added to my career it would have been an Olympic Games.

“During London 2012 I was number one in the world so I would have had a great opportunity of a medal.

“I’m as passionate as ever about the game and hopefully with the exposure it is starting to get at the moment we can still achieve that Olympic place one day.”