This has nothing to do with squash as such, just the way it is managed, and the way I want it to be managed, mainly with regards to access to information.
I happen to be in East London at the moment, and coincidentally the 2011 Jarvis & Kaplan tournaments were being held here too. These are basically the men’s and women’s inter-provincial tournaments. It’s a fairly large event as far as squash tournaments go, but do you think I could find any information about it?
Searching the internet found a very nice article on Gauteng Squash’s website that gave a brief history and explained a bit about the tournament in general but nothing specific to this year’s tournament.
Going to Squash SA’s website also provided some information but not much. It had two letters sent out by Border’s organising committee, but again no fixtures or locations. I did then decide to try Border Squash’s website.
A quick search revealed that they did in fact have one, and there was a nice link for the Jarvis/Kaplan cups. Clicking on it gave a page with a list of fixtures, exactly what I had been looking for, apart from one thing. These were dates and results for 2004.
Today I went to one of the clubs and managed to catch the last of the WP vs Border match. There were no boards up with results or fixtures. I eventually found an office where a lady was kind enough to photo copy me some of the fixtures, but this is all information that should be readily available.
How can they have had daily scores available on their website in 2004, and now they don’t even have extra fixture books to give spectators. I e-mailed an address for Border Squash that was on one of the information letter’s they sent out earlier this year asking for information or fixtures relating to the tournament but have still not received any reply. (update: received an email today from Border telling me they don’t have anything to email me but that fixtures are available at the courts, I visited Buffalo Park’s courts but couldn’t locate any fixture lists)
I don’t think I’m unfounded in my disappointment. Sure we’ve been spoilt in the last years, the internet making information available to us whenever we want, but that’s the norm, that’s the way it should be. If people want to build up a sport or event, the internet is where to do it. Everyone has access to it, and it’s easy.