#793 – Paul Coll | #1 Squash Player in the World

Sevan Matossian (00:03):

Bam, we’re live. Oh, that makes me nervous. I’m rarely, rarely the only person, uh, in here when I get here, no, Caleb, no suza, no guest. I wonder what happened. I better, uh, I better resend the links. Hey, uh, those of you who, uh, remember the guests we had on, we’ve had ’em on twice now. Tyson b uh, division two quarterback went to the Senior Bowl. I’m sending the link to, uh, everyone again. Maybe it was Cy trying to figure out where everyone is. Went to the Senior Bowl. Uh, what the Senior Bowl is, is it’s where all the best college, uh, uh, football players go to perform their last game. It’s like the pro Bowl for college football. And there’s three of those pro bowls. And the top one, the very top one where the best college players go is the Senior Bowl. And Tyson was invited there.


Very rare that a division two player, uh, would be invited there. Uh, not only was he invited there, but he was voted by all of the other players as kind of their favorite, favorite player. He was like the cool guy there. So imagine that of the 106 guys, 111 guys, uh, who went there, um, and, and the vast majority of them will end up going to the N F L. Like last year was 106 of the 111 were drafted to go to the N NFL Uhoh. I sent them the, uh, I sent them to the wrong link. I sent them the wrong link. My goodness. Well, that hasn’t happened before. I sent the guest the wrong link. My goodness. Anyway, so Tyson goes there. Not only is he voted by all the other players as the cool kid, the kid that everyone likes, but he throws e every quarterback there played only one quarter. He throws 17 completions. Well, Savon is that a lot? Well, just so you know, second place only through, uh, 11 completions. Pretty crazy. Hey Paul, what’s

Paul Coll (02:27):

Up? Hey mate, how’s it going?

Sevan Matossian (02:29):

Hey, I sent you to the, uh, Paul, uh, Dave Castro window.

Paul Coll (02:33):

Yeah, I was, I was trying my hardest not to be late. And you stitched me up there,

Sevan Matossian (02:37):

<laugh>. I set you up for failure, Paul.

Paul Coll (02:41):

It’s all good, mate. We bounce back. That’s what we do.

Sevan Matossian (02:44):

I’m wondering, I’m looking over here at the schedule. I wonder if there’s other people over there live call. Oh God, I’m a ding dong.

Paul Coll (02:51):


Sevan Matossian (02:53):

Well, it says here, we’re live. We’re good.

Paul Coll (02:56):

We’re up and running.

Sevan Matossian (02:57):

Yeah. Eat a man. Dude. Thanks for doing this. Hey, you know, it’s a trip. I, I didn’t, until I started researching you, I didn’t even know you were a CrossFitter.

Paul Coll (03:05):

I was actually, um, I was speaking to my, my girlfriend, my fiance now, and I was thinking, I was curious as how, how you come across me, whether it was, uh, through my old CrossFit days or, or what it was. But yeah, I was curious how you come across, across me in the squash.

Sevan Matossian (03:19):

We had this dude on, uh, Kane, I’m gonna screw up his last name. He’s the best racquetball player in the world.

Paul Coll (03:27):


Sevan Matossian (03:28):

Kane Kane, who’s gonna get, tell me Kane’s, uh, let me see. Uh, w Wain Chuck. Do you know that name?

Paul Coll (03:36):

I, I, I’m not too familiar for racquetball, if I’m being honest with you. So Yeah,

Sevan Matossian (03:40):

That’s true.

Paul Coll (03:40):

American sport that, yeah. So,

Sevan Matossian (03:42):

Oh, that is mainly an American sport.

Paul Coll (03:45):

Yeah, it’s, it’s probably like if I, if I go to America and I say, um, oh, I played squash. No one, generally no one knows what I’m talking about. And then I go, oh, it’s like racquetball. And then they’ll be like, oh, racquet book. You know? So it’s a bit, it’s a bit more of the, the dominating sort of sport there. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (04:02):

Uh, and um, same, same chord though, right?

Paul Coll (04:05):

Uh, slightly different dimensions, but very, very similar in terms of um, like shape and stuff. But racker ball’s a bit bigger.

Sevan Matossian (04:13):

Okay. And, and then your, and your ball, uh, has way less bounce, right? It’s more like a handball.

Paul Coll (04:18):

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Correct. Yeah. So the racquet balls are way quicker way bounce. Yeah. Ours is a little bit less, well, quite a lot less sort of bouncy and um, takes a bit more to, to warm it up and stuff like that. And it’s a bit bit slower, but that’s, the court’s smaller, so it’s sort of like, works out the same, same sort of pace. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (04:36):

It’s not a handball though, right?

Paul Coll (04:39):

No, no, no. A lot smaller. Yeah, a lot smaller. It’s probably the size of a golf ball.

Sevan Matossian (04:43):

Have you ever been to prison, Paul

Paul Coll (04:45):

Into prison? Nah. No. I’ve never been to prison.

Sevan Matossian (04:47):

<laugh> just, just seeing if you have any handball pedigree. That’s like the sport in prison, right? Handball.

Paul Coll (04:52):

I think it was, yeah, it was like made there or something, wasn’t it? Or am I talking?

Sevan Matossian (04:57):

I mean, you can’t have a racket, right? <laugh>? No, in prison. In prison. So like, Hey, here’s your ball. Figure out a game. Um, uh, so we had this guy, uh, Kane, uh, uh, Waz Wolin chuck on. Cool dude, uh, racquetball player. Wow. I didn’t realize Kane was 41. And, and we have a lot of in, you know, interesting people parade through here. It, it’s, it’s, um, I’ll interview anyone and then someone’s like, Hey dude, you gotta see this guy. Uh, Paul Cole, am I, did I pronounce your last name right? Cole?

Paul Coll (05:27):

Yeah. Perfect, right? Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (05:29):

And so then I started looking at you and I was like, oh yeah, this is gonna be great if I could get this dude. And then, um, and then I started watching all these videos on you on YouTube, and I’m like, oh my goodness, this guy’s, uh, a CrossFitter.

Paul Coll (05:42):

I hope you didn’t dive too deep, mate. Some of those videos online make me cringe when I watch them back.

Sevan Matossian (05:47):

Oh, they’re great. I dove deep. They’re great. Hey man. Um, uh, are, are you still CrossFit?

Paul Coll (05:53):

Um, not as much, no, because, um, my CrossFitting days is when I was sort of breaking through on the squash scene, so I was probably, I wasn’t, I was playing a lot of tournaments, but I was playing like one or two matches per tournament, so it wasn’t too, too draining on the minder body. But now I’m making sort of semi-finals finals quite regularly. It’s my schedule’s just too full. And so, like, you know what CrossFit’s like if you get, if you don’t do it for three, four weeks and then you come back, your body just gets sore. And uh, I was just finding it was, the load was too much for, for doing, you know, my squash schedule and CrossFit, so I had to taper it back. So I haven’t probably done it. I, I mean, I still do it if I’m in a, in a good training block. Cause I, I still love it. But yeah, I dropped all my Olympic lifting, all my gymnastics and, um, it’s more just sort of like, yeah, my training between tournaments has calmed down quite a lot cuz my body just, just can’t handle both of them. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (06:48):

Uh, how old are you?

Paul Coll (06:50):

I’m 30 now.

Sevan Matossian (06:52):

Yeah. Oh man, you’re still young. Um, uh, I, I, I’m gonna be completely frank. Uh, you know, I love CrossFit, but I saw you doing, um, a snatch, a snatch with great formm. It like, I think you were snatching 1 55 and then you lowered it to a hang snatch and then did another snatch. And then in that same workout I saw you doing muscle ups and I’m like, man, I, I don’t know, I don’t know if I risk that risk my put my shoulders in those positions. I know someone’s gonna yell at me. No, no. It’s per, it’s great for you, but I’m, it would freak me out to have one of the best racket players in the world, uh, be tossing around those kind of weights and, and that kind of explosive dynamic range.

Paul Coll (07:31):

Yeah, exactly. And, and that was sort of the youngest self of me just enjoying it too much and probably, I don’t know, I I felt like it was,

Sevan Matossian (07:39):

Um, I mean, you were strong. You’re not even a big guy. You’re, you were strong or you are

Paul Coll (07:44):

Strong. Yeah, I’m not, not, not as much anymore. I, I used to be quite strong when I was doing CrossFit, but I’ve, I’ve dropped all that back, but it used to jack up my shoulders too much, especially my right shoulder. So I’d get a lot of like stiffness when I’m trying to swing through hair. And that’s why I sort of stopped also doing all of those overhead lifts and all my sort of muscle ups and stuff like that. Um, cuz it used to just jack up my right shoulder like crazy, especially all through here and it would just tighten up my swing, which obviously when your swings your whole whole sport, it’s no good. But, uh, uh, yeah, I mean, Olympic lifting, it’s very explosive, isn’t it? So I was doing it for that. But you, you’re probably right, like putting the shoulders in those positions is, uh, not, not the most ideal thing to do, but it was fun. It was fun.

Sevan Matossian (08:28):

And, and, and you were looking, you were looking Jack too. Like those, those crazy you, you guys wear those crazy like Tour de France shirts like that, those like pinner guys wear and you’d have all, you’d have titties in there, like, I would see you in interviews. I’m like, oh yeah, CrossFitter, like, your back’s also wool, but you got, I you did lose a lot of that muscle. Cause now when I see the more recent, uh, um, footage of you, you’re looking more spelt again. You’re just, you’re just, you’re like an ass and glutes and quads now in, in Cal, you know, <laugh>.

Paul Coll (08:56):

Yeah, I’m all lower half now. I’m completely from my chest up. I’ve just dropped a lot of weight. Yeah, a lot of muscle. Um, which, which I don’t always like, but, uh, it’s, it’s part of the job. I think when I finish squash, I’ll get back into some pretty, pretty good CrossFit. I mean, I love to, I love to, I love the whole training side of it, community side of it. It was, um, it was cool man, like for me to do training like that and it was so fun. Like, um, you know, to have a, have fun aspect and I loved it. So I’ll, I’ll, I’ll be surprised if I didn’t go back to it after squash, to be honest.

Sevan Matossian (09:29):

Are you in, you’re in Amsterdam right now?

Paul Coll (09:32):

Yeah, so I’m based out of Amsterdam, so, um, just got back in from America a couple of days ago. Actually. We were playing in New York there, so that was pretty cool. So, um, yeah, just, just flew in two days ago. So back here for a couple weeks training.

Sevan Matossian (09:45):

Uh, and and what were you doing over here in, in the United States?

Paul Coll (09:48):

Uh, we actually have a pretty cool tournament over there, man. It’s, um, you should Google it. It’s in, it’s called Tournament of Champions. It’s in Okay. It’s in Grand Central Station. So they, wow.

Sevan Matossian (09:57):


Paul Coll (09:58):

So they build a, do

Sevan Matossian (09:59):

They build a mock course there? Like in this, in the,

Paul Coll (10:02):

Yeah, so we, we are quite lucky we can, we got these courts made out of glass and we just put them up anywhere we want basically. So they put one up in the middle of Grand Central Station. So, um, you got like, I don’t know how many people go through there a day, 500,000 people going through there a day and just the courts just bang up sitting in, in Vanderbilt Hill there. So, um,

Sevan Matossian (10:21):

It’s, dude, these images are crazy. Yeah. How did I not see this? This is nuts.

Paul Coll (10:26):

It’s okay. Yeah. Yeah. So we’ve got these big chandeliers above us and um, you got people like walking through the front wall, um, like crazy, you know, so it’s great for spot the exposure of squash. It’s, it’s real cool atmosphere in that tournament.

Sevan Matossian (10:41):

Yeah. This is the train station in New York?

Paul Coll (10:43):

Yeah. Yeah, right. It’s, um, there’s Vanderbilt Hill. So as you go into the main thing that’s literally just off to the right of, um, Granton Central Station. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (10:53):

Wow. That’s crazy. Yeah. Hey, so, so it says it’s sponsored by JP Morgan. So you got some rich dude who loves squash, who’s like, all right, I’m bringing these guys, this is nothing. I’m bringing this sport to New York.

Paul Coll (11:06):

Yeah, a hundred percent. I think this is probably like, this is probably like the best tournament to sponsor for squash because, um, like they, like I said, they have what, I don’t know how many people go through Grand Central Day, but I mean the foot traffic nuts,

Sevan Matossian (11:18):

Nuts, nuts. Yeah.

Paul Coll (11:20):

So they’ve got JP Morgan just plaster across the front of that and you’ve got all those people to, I mean, that’s like the mo one of the most iconic sort of squash venues that we play in. So that’s pretty, it’s pretty cool that, man, it’s a real buzzy experience when you’re just walking through a train station and you’ve got train announcements going on and you’re just trying to play squash.

Sevan Matossian (11:37):

Oh, it’s like that. Yeah. Oh, so it’s almost like a video game, you know, like those video games where you drive Formula one through a town, this is you playing squash in a train station.

Paul Coll (11:45):

Yeah, basically. We also, we also put them up in the, have you seen the one in front of the pyramids?

Sevan Matossian (11:50):

No. <laugh>. Yeah. Oh, this is, I haven’t seen any of this. And that’s where it’s a huge sport, right? Squash is like crazy big in Egypt.

Paul Coll (11:58):

Yeah, they have probably like six, seven out of the top 10 and we, yeah. So we, we play there probably five times a year and they put this one up in the middle of the desert, just in the pyramid, just in the background. And they, um, so we just play in the middle of the desert, which is pretty, pretty wild cause you get sand and dust and wind just hoing around on a court, which is not what we normally sort of play on.

Sevan Matossian (12:21):

And do people complain about this? Like the train station noises or the dust or? No, like everyone knows, Hey man, this is part of the scene, this is what we do.

Paul Coll (12:29):

Um, it’s tough cuz I, I was, I was in the final of this one this year

Sevan Matossian (12:33):

And this is nuts right here, by the way. This is crazy

Paul Coll (12:37):

<laugh>. Yeah, so, so basically one of the, sort of a part of the court was basically unplayable, so I couldn’t really into one corner, I was just slipping every rally. So, um,

Sevan Matossian (12:48):

Because of Sand

Paul Coll (12:49):

Sandman it was crazy. Like wind was just blowing up. You mentioned the sands just, just like blowing around. So I was like slipping like crazy. My opponent was slipping too, so I couldn’t really just say it was just me. But I mean, that for the sport is so good. So you, you’ve almost gotta just, you know, suck it up and as long as you Yeah, I mean that, that, that comes to a point cause you don’t wanna get injured, but I mean, look how cool that is. That’s insane, right? So,

Sevan Matossian (13:13):

Hey, I, I, I saw in one of your games there’s a guy that comes running out there with a, um, like a, uh, like a, a a, I guess it’s not a broom. It looks like he’s drying the court.

Paul Coll (13:24):

Yeah. So we, we sweat like crazy. It’s, um, pretty intense on there. So you have like, you normally have a court clean who just comes around and just gets like the droplets of sweat, um, from the court because Yeah, like it’s, you’ll slip if you’re going hard and you lunge and you slip on that, you just ask him for a hamstring injury. So, um, yeah,

Sevan Matossian (13:44):

In Egypt they could have a dude with a vacuum. Like you could get dice, they should have Dyson as a sponsor. And like he just comes out there and like sweeps out the, sucks out the dust in the corners

Paul Coll (13:53):

A hundred percent. Man, they have a, they have like a, an Egypt, they do like a wet mop, so they wet the mop. So they’ll, in between games they’ll go out and just wet the whole court and take up all the dust. And then obviously it’s like 30 degrees here, so it dries in like 30 seconds. Um, so that’s how they solve that. But I like your thinking. Get dicing in

Sevan Matossian (14:11):

Yeah. Another sponsor, right? Yeah. Even if it doesn’t work. Yeah. Um, hey, is that, uh, what’s the um, the integrity of those portable, uh, squash courts? Are they good? Are they just as good as the uh, like the permanent ones? Like the, the, for some, I mean, I, I’m gonna say something so stupid here, but they’re rigid, they’re not all flimsy. They do ’em good. They’re tight, they got the same bounce off the walls. You can run into ’em full speed, all that stuff.

Paul Coll (14:37):

Yeah. So these courts here, the glass courts is what we call them. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, that’s what like all of our major events we played on these. So we are actually as pros, we prefer to play on these cuz we’re used to them. Um, so that, that these are like the best courts out there. Yeah. So that they’re pretty thick glass, but that’s what we, we play on every major. So we, we actually prefer to play on these courts rather than traditional courts. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (15:01):

Someone just said, uh, let me see this, uh, sev uh, Brandon Waddell, SevOne look up the attorney from 2009 in Chicago. Why would some good stuff there like a good, um, let’s see.

Paul Coll (15:13):

Oh nine, that’s before my time to be honest.

Sevan Matossian (15:14):

Squash 2009, uh, tournament. What did, did he say in Chicago? Oh yeah. Chicago. Chicago. T where they, oh, just outside. Wow. Wow. Okay. Let me see this. I’ll pull this up too. It, it’s just outside in front of like the Sears tower. Is that where it is?

Paul Coll (15:33):

Oh yeah, I think I remember that one. That was before my time. But yeah, we’ve had a few outdoors, like we have outdoors in San Francisco as well. Yeah, it’s pretty nuts then.

Sevan Matossian (15:43):

Yeah. That’s so cool.

Paul Coll (15:45):


Sevan Matossian (15:46):

Hey is it, is it the same court? They just, that thing just packs up, it’s just really thick pieces of glass and it just packs up and they ship that thing around?

Paul Coll (15:54):

Yeah, we’ll have like, we have one, there’ll be one in America that will be sort of shipped around America, Canada, we have one in Europe, well it’s probably like four or five in Europe, couple in New Zealand, Australia. So they have them in like the different continents just so it’s easier for shipping. Um, yeah.

Sevan Matossian (16:10):

Hey, you think you’ll, um, when you’re done, um, playing, you’ll somehow be involved in like the, uh, I was gonna call it the politics. It probably is politics, but the admin of squash, like you’ll somehow get involved in the admin of it, like the guy who’s like in charge of that glass case or the people who make sure the tournaments run correctly or what, what, I don’t know what that is. You know what I mean? Like someone who wears a suit and kind of got like a belly and hands trophies to people.

Paul Coll (16:36):

No, I’m, I’m definitely not an admin guy to be honest. I’ll be, I’ll be doing something like maybe if I’m in squash it’ll be like coaching, like high performance coaching or to be honest, like I’ve, I’ve always been into, I’ve always said that I’ll, I’ll open up a gym when I, when I finish, um, I don’t know what, what type of gym, CrossFit or something like that. I’ve always been into that side of sort of coaching and personal training and um, so I, that’s what I was going down, but I’m, I’m definitely not an admin guy. I’d be, uh, yeah, I’m an outdoors guy, physical guy. I like to, to be active. So

Sevan Matossian (17:09):

Ho is, is Home is New Zealand for you?

Paul Coll (17:12):

Yeah, so Home’s, New Zealand. So, um, that’s where I’m from. That’s where I’ll always be from. I live in Amsterdam though because obviously logistics wise, going back to New Zealand, it takes two days to go back there. So virtually impossible to, to be sort of based out of New Zealand. We have one, we have New Zealand Open, which is one a year, but other than that it’s, it’s all the side of the world. So yeah, logistics wise for um, sort of jet landing and whatnot, it’s, it’s impossible to, to be based in New Zealand. So, but yeah, I always call that home.

Sevan Matossian (17:42):

And, and Paul, your girl is uh, she’s a squash player too.

Paul Coll (17:46):

Yeah, so she’s, um, she’s world number nine. Hey,

Sevan Matossian (17:49):

You look pretty buffed there. You look pretty buffed. Like you don’t look like a, like a tour de Franz guy there,

Paul Coll (17:54):


Sevan Matossian (17:54):

No, you’re looking good. Look

Paul Coll (17:56):

At your arms. Yeah, I, I’ve actually, I’ve, I’ve been working on it a bit more to be honest.

Sevan Matossian (18:01):

You knew you were coming on this podcast, so you did some curls,

Paul Coll (18:04):

<laugh>. Yeah, my favorite celebrations, like, you know, flicking the guns and I had to stop that cause I was, I was too skinny and you can’t really flex the guns when you’re, when you got, you know, Lance Armstrong arms. So I had to Right, I had to get back in the gym just so I can sort of get that celebration going again.

Sevan Matossian (18:20):

So this is your, so your girl plays?

Paul Coll (18:23):

Yeah, she’s Belgium. So we live, um, that’s why we sort of live in Amsterdam as well cause we like two hours from, from her place. So, um, yeah, we just got engaged in, uh, December back in New Zealand, so that was pretty cool. But yeah, she’s world, world direct number nine. She’s in Detroit playing at the moment. But yeah, we travel quite a lot playing together, which is cool.

Sevan Matossian (18:41):

Um, the boys and girls don’t, don’t, don’t go together,

Paul Coll (18:44):

Um, for the majors. We do. Yeah. So she was in New York as well playing in the, the, uh, the train station there. But like for the, there’s a small event, what we call sort of like silver level tournaments and golden tournaments. Quite often you’ll just have a woman’s or just have a men’s sort of event. So, but all the majors are equal prize money, which is quite cool for New Zealand. It’s equal prize money in the majors and yeah, they normally run them together at the same time. I think there’s only one major that’s, that’s different.

Sevan Matossian (19:12):

Yeah. Are they just as popular, the men and women, the comp, the, like the crowd with the crowd?

Paul Coll (19:17):

Yeah, I think so. I mean, the women’s squash at the moment’s pretty cool. I mean they, they’ve got, I think sometimes people prefer it than the men’s squash at the moment because the men’s squash is getting a bit, um, a bit sort of physical between players. There’s a lot of stoppages and stuff, whereas a woman tends to sort of just run around each other and it’s more free flowing. So, um, it’s getting, it’s getting quite good and man, they, they play at a high pace these days. Like the woman are, they’re impressive what the, they’re getting up to. So, um, yeah, it’s cool that, you know, the whole tour is sort of equal prize money. It’s something that’s squashed sort of, you know, tries to promote quite, quite highly.

Sevan Matossian (19:53):

Um, uh, couple questions here. Where, what do you rank number one or what do you rank currently? Right now?

Paul Coll (19:59):

I’m three. Currently. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (20:02):

And and you’ve been as high as number one?

Paul Coll (20:04):

Yeah, so I was number one, um, sort of last, last year for about four, uh, three and a half, four months.

Sevan Matossian (20:12):

And, and congratulations, you started at 13 years old, right?

Paul Coll (20:16):

Yeah, around there, competition wise, probably 13. I was probably playing a bit younger because yeah, my, my parents and stuff were always at the court. So competition wise, I would’ve started when I was about 13. But yeah, I was probably had a record in my hand a bit younger than that.

Sevan Matossian (20:29):

So, so basically 16 years of play and eventually became the number one player in the world. And I, I I want to, I’m, I’m gonna say something and then, and then we’ll come back to this. Cause I want to go back. I want to hint on something you said, but also you, you, you, in some of the videos I saw you didn’t believe you’d ever be, uh, the number one player in the world. You couldn’t, you weren’t the kind of guy who envisioned it and then, and then got there.

Paul Coll (20:54):


Sevan Matossian (20:54):

You got there with a lot of self-doubt.

Paul Coll (20:57):

Yeah, yeah,

Sevan Matossian (20:58):

Yeah. That’s awesome. I, I want to come back to that, but let me ask you this real quick. Um, uh, when you just said that the men’s, um, uh, events are becoming more physical, Ooh, I really, I, I like this <laugh>. I think a little bit of pushing would be good for any sport. What’s happening? What, what do you mean? Like, dudes like purposely hitting each other with the ball or not moving out of the way? What’s going on?

Paul Coll (21:19):

It’s not so much hitting off the ball, but, um, we, we, it’s a big thing in squash at the moment. We don’t have professional refs. It’s all the risks are vol volunteers. So

Sevan Matossian (21:28):

They’re not Oh, sounds like CrossFit.

Paul Coll (21:30):

Yeah, right. So they’re, um, they’re not, they’re not highly paid so they don’t train or, or whatever. So they, they do the best job they can. Like I’m, I’m, I’m, I never try and give the risks too much shit because, uh, you know, I mean they do what they get paid to do, you know, and they don’t get paid to do anything. So like, I’m, I’m, I’m, I never get trying, I never try to give them too much grief, but uh, like it’s not so much hitting with a ball, but you know, you can, in squash you can a hundred percent use your body to get in the way of your opponent. And it’s, it’s a real hot topic can squash at the moment. And people trying to get, we have these things called let’s and strokes. So if, if you’re in your way of your opponent, they can’t play a bull, they get a stroke.


So they get awarded the point basically. Um, so obviously if you can get awarded the point then you know, you’re gonna do quite a lot to, to do that. So, yeah, I mean there’s, it’s a big topic in the men’s squash, particularly at the moment in terms of, you know, players using their bodies and, and trying to get points and not letting you go to the bull and stuff like that. So it’s something squash is trying to clean up and I think it needs to, cause it’s quite confusing to a, a non squash person about what, what’s happening and what’s going on. But there’s been some, uh, pretty fiery matches over the last 12 months.

Sevan Matossian (22:42):

I, I saw, um, a match, I don’t remember where it was, but you guys were hitting backhand, um, against, I don’t know if you know, if they’re called backhand and squash, but it looked like you guys were hitting backhand and it was just down the line of the wall. Yeah. And so each person had to hit it and then move out of the way. Yeah. And it was tight. You guys were basically just going in circles around each other like this. Yeah. Trying to make room for the other guy to get the backhand and it’s moving very quickly. And I was like, oh man, that, that looks, uh, and that, that looks, uh, like it’s a fight waiting to happen, like just two, you’re basically, you guys are trying to share the space of a phone booth back and forth hitting against the wall

Paul Coll (23:24):

A hundred percent. And and that’s where it gets, like we have a, like you say, down that backhand wall, we have a lot of traffic because that’s where probably 70% of squash is played down there. And yeah, if someone doesn’t want to move around someone, then it just becomes, uh, it can become a bit of a nightmare on there. Um, which I don’t particularly enjoy. It’s not not how I wanna play squash. So I think it, it’s, you know, we’re, we’re trying to get professional rest and I think that will help for sure. But, uh, yeah, I mean it’s done to the players, isn’t it, to, it’s how we wanna play the game. And I think it’s, you know, cuz using your body’s, it’s, it’s sort of like an underground Zoom tennis, you know, it’s a bit bit, you know, you’re not really supposed to do it. It’s

Sevan Matossian (24:05):

Not, say that again? It’s like what in tennis?

Paul Coll (24:07):

Like an under, under underserved, you know, like it’s Oh, oh yeah. So it’s not like you, you’ll get penalized for it if you do it too, too aggressively, you’ll get penalized for, um, for using your body too much. Yeah. If you don’t let your opponent go to the ball, you, you, you’ll sort of should be award of the point against you basically.

Sevan Matossian (24:24):

Uh, the Rally Report podcast, uh, top of the men’s game is getting dirty. I, I, I mean, I have to tell you, I like this. I I I know it’s probably not popular. I like dirty, uh, which Paul’s being polite about. Um, he doesn’t, uh, play, Paul doesn’t play dirty, but dealing with it seems like nonsense. Oh, I like it. I, I wanna see it sounds like some something that could go viral on YouTube <laugh>. So, so is it, is it, let me ask you this. Is it, um, a couple questions. Is it new players bringing it into the game? Like maybe trying to be a little more innovative or pushing the boundaries of the rules? Um, is it, uh, lazy players, like maybe players who are outta shape who aren’t as good, who are, uh, invoking this tactic? And um, uh, is it, the third question is, is it that they’re not moving or that they’re purposely moving into the wrong spots to to, to make it more difficult?

Paul Coll (25:15):

I mean, it it is tough is, you know,

Sevan Matossian (25:18):

Is it like, does everyone know who the guy is? Who’s the guy who’s like, yep, that’s the guy who, who gets in your way?

Paul Coll (25:24):

<laugh>, um, <laugh>,

Sevan Matossian (25:26):

I won’t ask his name, but is that the, is there a guy everyone knows?

Paul Coll (25:29):

Yeah, yeah, there’s, okay. Yeah, there’s, there’s a, there’s a few guys that are sort

Sevan Matossian (25:32):

Of, God, I hope he’s an American <laugh>, God I hope he’s an American,

Paul Coll (25:37):

That there’s not too many American top male squash players, unfortunately.

Sevan Matossian (25:40):

What’s the highest ranked American?

Paul Coll (25:42):

Oof. I think around 40, 40, 50. Okay. But there is,

Sevan Matossian (25:47):

God, we suck.

Paul Coll (25:48):

Yeah, there’s four, four, uh, women in the top 24, I think four, four in the top 20 for, um,

Sevan Matossian (25:55):

On the women’s side.

Paul Coll (25:56):


Sevan Matossian (25:57):

Oh, so, so what is, so what, is it a new, is it a new, is it a new guy? Is it, is it new players or is it old players? Like I could, I’m picturing in my head it’s either old players who are losing a step, who are invoking that technique or it’s, um, new player, you know what I mean, by losing a step. Like they’re getting a little slow so they’re like, all right, yeah. Start pushing the boundaries of what’s legal or, or it’s new guys who are like, man, I’m gonna add some fucking testosterone to this sport

Paul Coll (26:23):

<laugh>. Um, there’s definitely, yeah, it’s probably younger guys coming through cause there’s a bit of a transition from junior squash to, you know, sort of professional squash. So, um, but to be honest, like everyone does it, man. Like it’s just how subtle you are with doing it and when you do it, how much you do it, how aggressively you do it. So I mean, everyone’s guilty of it. Um, but there’s, there’s definitely, there’s a, there’s a line that pros know that, you know, if you go over that you’re sort of, you’re being a bit of a dick about it, but I mean, everyone in squash does it, especially when people get tired. People don’t do it on purpose as well. Cause obviously when you get tired, you’re not moving as quick. So then there’s just gonna be interference no matter what, because I mean, it’s a, it’s an intense sport.


We go over a hundred minutes sometimes heart rate’s like 1 70, 180, so you’re gonna get tired and you’re gonna get slower. And if you just, I mean there, there’s certain styles of players. I mean, there’s some big boys on tour. You’ve got people like six two, you know, going around in a small box like that. So you know, they’ve got legs and arms going around, you’re trying to run around them at full pace. Um, so I mean there’s, there’s like, there’s accidental contact as well, and there’s, people look for it. I mean, to be honest, it comes down to the players. You know, every player, every, every player can do it. Every player can play how they wanna play. But, um, to me it’s, yeah, it’s, it’s a fine line in squash and it can, it can turn to match pretty ugly pretty quick.

Sevan Matossian (27:46):

Really. Like if, if like the two guys just don’t like each other in there, it just gets nasty.

Paul Coll (27:51):

Yeah. And like if, if, yeah, if, if, if it’s a real clash of players, then it can come become an absolute dog fight and the ref needs to take control of it. And that’s where our game falls down is when the rest can’t control it because it just, it just spirals outta control. And every rally is a stoppage and every rally that’s, you know, something like that. So it, it, it comes down to the players and then the referees need to sorted out. But that’s where it’s sort of falling away at the moment.

Sevan Matossian (28:20):

Um, in, in, um, in college I played, uh, racquetball. You’re in the, you’re in a court, right? Not, not like, uh, competitively, like just, we had racquetball courts at the gym and it was something like I did at least once a week with friends and I on and over those four years that I was in college, um, all, all three of my buddies stopped playing with me. <laugh> uh, two of them said I was too intense and, and they didn’t like me in there. And, and one of them we just, um, uh, in, in racquetball you, if the guy standing in front of you and I, I, he would be in front of me and I hit him once and then he hit me and then I hit him and it really hurts to get hit. Right.

Paul Coll (29:00):

Dude, you, you see the bruises from those balls, man? Uh, savaged. Like

Sevan Matossian (29:04):

Is it like that in squash too? If you get hit, it hurts really bad.

Paul Coll (29:08):

Oh yeah. And, and you get these bruises, like it starts white, then it goes red and then you get this big black clock.

Sevan Matossian (29:13):

Oh, I never had one of those. No. Mine just stings so bad. Uh, does someone get hit in every game in squash?

Paul Coll (29:21):


Sevan Matossian (29:21):

No, no, no, no. The pros don’t hit each other. Holy smokes. Yeah. <laugh>. Holy smokes.

Paul Coll (29:27):

<laugh>. Yeah. Yeah. I mean that bull’s traveling like 150 kilometers. Yeah. So it’s funny cuz it gets these like rings on it. Yeah.

Sevan Matossian (29:38):

Yeah. And, and, and it was just, it got too intense with, I personally didn’t mind it, but these other guys, like one guy said, Hey dude, you never compliment me in the court. I’m not playing with you anymore. I’m like, I never compliment you. I fucking hate you in here.

Paul Coll (29:50):

Isn’t, isn’t racquetball quite a gentleman sport in America?

Sevan Matossian (29:54):

I don’t know. You know what’s weird about racquet sports? Paul? There.

The above transcript is generated using AI technology and therefore may contain errors.

Check out our other posts.