Last month in mid to late November, the Meydenbauer Center played host to the 2015 Men’s World Squash Championships. The event featured 112 athletes from 32 different countries in contention for a share of $325,000 in cash prizes. Two of the world class athletes were from our very own Bellevue High School, brothers Sharif and Salim Khan.
It was the first time the event had ever been held in the United States and the fact that the Professional Squash Association chose Seattle to host the event can largely be attributed to the great squash history of the Khan family. Sharif and Salim come from a long line greatness on the court. None greater though than Yusuf, their grandfather and 10-time Indian champion who came to Seattle in 1968 and brought the game of squash with him. Yusuf helped construct some of the first glass-walled courts here in Washington.
The two brothers attribute their original passion for the game to their historic heritage but both have adopted a new love for it as they’ve continued to build their careers.
“Being in a squash family with a squash background was the initial reason I became familiar with it but ever since I got on the court it’s been my decision to continue to play” Sharif Khan said.
Salim agreed and despite being the younger of the two, Salim is actually ranked higher than Sharif and when asked who would win a match between the competitive brothers, Salim was quick to defend his ranking.
“We use to go back and forth… but now I have focused a lot on squash and improving my game and so now I beat Sharif” Salim said with a smile.
Regardless of who’s the better of the two, the Khan brothers both shared an incredible experience that deserves the respect by our community.