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G.O.A.T #10: Hashim Khan & Margot Lumb

Over the last month, we have given squash fans the chance to decide the greatest players in squash history as we looked over the achievements and legacies of some of the most recognisable names ever to take to a squash court.

The votes are now in and we will be announcing the results in descending order to when we reveal the official men’s and women’s GOAT.

20th PlaceDon Butcher & Sheila Macintosh
19th PlaceRoshan Khan & Sue Cogswell
18th PlaceAzam Khan & Anna Craven-Smith
17th PlaceAbdelfattah AbouTaleb & Sue King
16th PlaceAhmed Barada & Joyce Cave
15th PlaceF.D. Amr Bey & Silvia Huntsman
14th PlaceMahmoud Karim & Nancy Cave
13th PlaceQamar Zaman & Janet Morgan
12th PlaceJonah Barrington & Rachael Grinham
11th PlacePeter Nicol & Vicki Cardwell

In 10th place…

Hashim Khan
Nationality: Pakistani
British Open Titles: 7
British Open Finals: 8

Despite being just 5ft 4in tall, Hashim Khan’s influence on the game of squash is one of epic proportions.

Considered to be squash’s original Godfather, Khan was born in Peshawar in what is modern day Pakistan. Khan – whose exact date of birth remains a mystery – broke racial and class barriers during a pioneering career that saw him win the prestigious British Open a total of seven times, becoming the first Pakistani champion in tournament history and launching the Khan dynasty that would dominate squash throughout the 1980s and 1990s.

Khan's introduction to the game came through his father who was a steward at the British Officers Squash Club in Peshawar. When the young Hashim was not gathering balls hit over the roofless court walls, he would watch game after game before practicing barefoot once the officers had left.

He became a squash coach in 1942 and in 1944, won the All-of-India Championship and then, in 1951 following the creation of the new state of Pakistan and aged at least 36 – if not up to seven years older – he travelled to England to compete at the British Open.

In his maiden appearance at the sport’s biggest event, and wearing shoes on court for the first time, he dispatched four-time champion Mahmoud Khan 3-0 in the final – losing just five points in total to the man believed to be the world’s best player.

Khan then won six straight finals, beating his cousin Roshan in the 1956 final. Hashim lost the 1957 final, to Roshan, but came back to win the title for a seventh, and final, time in 1957 – beating his younger brother Azam in the decider.

He then moved to Detroit to coach squash at the Uptown Athletic Club and then, a decade later, became pro at the Denver Athletic Club. Khan helped make both well-known venues outside of the Ivy League squash circuit whilst he continued to compete in exhibition events all over the world.

He continued to play regularly up until his 90s, passing away aged at least 100 in 2014.

Margot Lumb
Nationality: English
British Open Titles: 5
British Open Finals: 6

Like Noel, Margot Lumb was proficient in both squash and tennis and racked up five successive British Open titles between 1935-1939 – a total which puts her level in the all-time winners list with Malaysian superstar Nicol David.

Lumb was renowned for her superb physical condition and speed around court and it was these traits that saw her fail to drop a single game in those British Open triumphs, which came after a final defeat to Noel in the 1934 final.

The Englishwoman was also a success on the hardball circuit, claiming victory at the United States Hardball National Championships in 1935.

Alongside her illustrious squash career, Lumb proved a handy tennis player and reached the final of the 1937 All England Plate competition which consisted of players defeated in the first and second rounds of the Wimbledon Championships.

Lumb also participated in the British Wightman Cup in 1937 and 1938, with the latter of those years also seeing her finish as runner-up of the German Championships singles event.

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