Frenchman Gregory Gaultier and England’s Laura Massaro have claimed the PSA March Players of the Month award after their historic triumphs during last month’s prestigious Allam British Open.
Gaultier became the oldest World No.1 of all time in the April rankings after a superb week of squash saw the 34-year-old lift the sport’s oldest and most distinguished title for the third time in his illustrious career.
The Frenchman had sealed the Windy City Open crown on the opening day of the month, but his displays in Hull were even more impressive as he struck down opponents with ease, with former World No.4 Miguel Angel Rodriguez and current World No.17 Cameron Pilley both being put to the sword for the loss of just a handful of points.
After marching past compatriot Mathieu Castagnet in the quarter-finals, his semi-final fixture with Egypt’s Ramy Ashour was brought to a premature end after a hip injury to the 2013 champion – leaving Gaultier up against three-time winner Nick Matthew in the climactic finale.
And he recovered from a game down to march to the title, seeing him usurp Mohamed ElShorbagy and overtake former Women’s World No.1 Sarah Fitz-Gerald to become the oldest player to top the rankings.
Laura Massaro celebrated her British Open win over Sarah-Jane Perry
Massaro, meanwhile, moved up to World No.2 for the first time since November 2016 after she became the first female English player since Janet Morgan in 1951 to lift the iconic British Open crown for a second time.
The 33-year-old – who also claimed the British Open title in 2013 – had gone almost 18 months without a World Series title, but returned to top form in Hull, with memorable victories over former World No.1 Raneem El Welily and defending champion Nour El Sherbini en route to a fourth British Open final in five years.
Her win over El Sherbini saw her battle back heroically from a two-game deficit to set up a first all-English Women’s final since 1991, with compatriot Sarah-Jane Perry standing between her and the prestigious title.
Massaro carried out her game plan to perfection and took the victory in four games to earn her third title of the season, leaving her as one of the front runners for the upcoming Orascom Development PSA Women’s World Championship.