England’s Sarah-Jane Perry, the world No 7, hopes to inspire squash’s next generation when she competes in a star-studded exhibition evening at the Dunlop British Junior Open on January 2.
Perry will play rising star Millie Tomlinson on the all-glass show court at University of Birmingham Sport & Fitness’s Munrow Arena, which will also feature triple world champion Nick Matthew taking on Declan James.
The two matches will kick off the British Junior Open from January 3-7, which features over 650 players and is regarded as one of the most prestigious junior competitions in world squash.
The scale of the event – which will be held in Birmingham for the next three years – requires the use of four venues: Edgbaston Priory Club (eight courts), University of Birmingham (six courts), Solihull Arden Club (four courts) and West Warwickshire Club (three courts).
“The BJO is such a prestigious event and I was delighted to hear Birmingham will be its home for the next three years,” said Perry.
“I’m really looking forward to being part of the opening evening and hopefully we can put on a good show and provide some inspiration to the next generation of young squash players.
“It will be great preparation for me as shortly afterwards I fly out to Saudi Arabia for a World Series event, a first for women’s squash.”
Perry’s participation at the exhibition night will also have an emotional tag following Birmingham’s successful bid to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
“I was born in Birmingham and have lived there, or nearby since so it will be an extra special games for me,” she added.
“A lot of regeneration has gone on in the city in recent years and this will push that on further, cementing Birmingham’s place as the second city.
“To win a medal in my home city would without a doubt be an absolute dream come true.”
For information and tickets:www.sportandfitness.bham.ac.uk/events/