World Number Ones Timeline
With Raneem El Welily having just retired – only the third player to do so while being ranked #1, after Susan Devoy and Jonathon Power – what better time to look at the history of the coveted world number one spot …
SquashStats have produced a fascinating timeline of Men’s and Women’s World Number Ones, by individual and country. Here’s a short version and some key graphics, you can read the full version on SquashStats (with some nice animations too).
Men’s Number Ones (20
You can see that the first 30 years of number ones was dominated by long runs from the like of Geoff Hunt, the Jahangir & Jansher Khan and Peter Nicol. Thereafter, apart from a 3-year stretch from Amr Shabana and most recently a trio of year-long tenures by Mohamed ElShorbagy, the position has changed hands frequently with few able to maintain a long-term hold.
Women’s Number Ones (15)
There’s fewer women’s number ones, partly due to the rankings starting later and partly due to extended reigns by Susan Devoy, Michelle Martin and Nicol David. More recently Nour El Sherbini and Raneem El Welily have dominated, but who knows what Welily’s departure will bring …
Reigns and titles
In terms of length of reign, David reigns supreme with nine unbroken years at the top amongst 112 total months with the Khans at the top of the men’s list with 6 and (almost) 5 years unbroken reigns.
Of the 25 men’s holders only 7 managed to keep the spot for longer than a year, a fate which also befell 7 of the ladies.
Men by Country
The timeline by country starts out reflecting the long runs by Hunt and the Khans, but then becomes more mixed with Egypt taking the ascendency in recent times.
Women by Country
It’s a similar picture in the women’s chart, David’s reign spanning the gap between Antipodean domination and the Egyptian takeover.
And Finally …
Three charts showing the months at number one by country.
There’s lots more info, charts, and animations on the SquashStats article, give it a read …