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Squash - 17. March 2008.

WISPA Launches Patrons Club

WISPA Patrons will, through their support and enthusiasm to see girls' and women’s squash grow, play a pivotal role in enabling the Association to achieve its ambitions towards helping develop ‘green shoot’ support, as well as marketing programmes and general promotional initiatives.

Furthermore, at the elite end of the game, Patrons will help WISPA develop a promotional framework that will eventually enables more members to earn an income that allows them the funds to focus on their development and be well enough funded to do so on a full time basis.

The initiative is part of the new WISPA vision - i.e. more players, more nations, more media coverage……more squash success!

WISPA President Natalie Grainger explained: "We are eager to supplement the efforts of the WSF and member nations in encouraging girls and women to try the sport - and then, if they have the potential, to try themselves out on the international stage.

"Our main focus is our World Tour, but we want to be able to strengthen these links and thus to play a larger part in supporting educational programmes using our role model players," added the world No4 from the USA.

WISPA Chief Executive Andrew Shelley commented: "Developing squash is essential to our future, not only supporting nurturing the grass roots, but by actively taking members to new nations. In recent months, WISPA events in Iran, Iceland, China, Pakistan and Portugal - in addition to Vietnam next week - show the breadth of these efforts.

"We must also explore every means we can to raise the profile of women’s international squash, develop interest in it, and thus grow the Tour. That, in itself, will encourage participation and growth of the sport. It will also assist us as we strive towards inclusion in the Olympics."

Membership of the WISPA Patrons Club will be open to anybody who wishes to join in the WISPA effort to play a part in promoting girls' and women’s squash. Details can be found on the WISPA website: www.wispa.net

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