Here is an update on the competitive season. Squash Nova Scotia is still looking at the possibility of operating tournaments and leagues this season, but with clubs still operating with limited capacity, it is unlikely that this will happen before the new year. Any competitive play we have will likely look different as we explore ways to limit the mingling of large groups of people, to operate within the risk tolerance of players, clubs and the province. We will keep you updated on progress as we know more.
I also share the updated Squash Canada tentative competitive calendar
Squash Canada update on 2021 Canadian Championships
With the premier’s announcement of relaxed rules for sport on Friday, Squash will be able to return to almost normal operations on 1 Oct 2020. This equates to between phase 5 and phase 6 on the Squash NS return to play guidelines which are linked below.
With the announcement that effective 1 Oct Sport bubbles are increased from 10 to 50 people who can participate in a sport without social distancing. This allows the return to normal operations with the following restrictions:
- Spectators are still restricted to half the capacity of the spectator viewing area to a maximum of 200.
- Masks must be worn indoors to and from the courts. Masks are not required on court.
- Players from outside the Atlantic bubble will need to self isolate for 14 days before playing squash in NS.
- Players returning from a tournament outside of the Atlantic bubble will need to self isolate for 14 days upon their return.
- Tournaments with more than 50 participants including staff, will still see some restrictions as we will need to separate 50 player groups in either time or space. This might entail splitting events between facilities, or running events on more than one weekend or splitting divisions by time in the same facility on the same weekend. This will create additional challenges for tournament organizers. Potential tournament organizers should contact the undersigned to seek advice before planning larger events.
- Leagues will need to restrict division sizes to 50 players or less.
To be explicit the following types of activity are authorized starting 1 Oct 2020:
- Team play (up to 50 players in a division vice 10 previously)
- Courses, Coaching programs and other activities which require more than 10 people on a court at once (limit raised to 50).
Venues are encouraged to update their policies to allow normal play for most activities with the exception of complying with spectator limits, requirements to wear mask within the facility and special provisions for larger tournaments of over 50 players and staff.
Remember that facilities will implement the more relaxed rules at their own pace consistent with their approval processes and level of risk tolerance so please be patient.
Remember to practice safe sport:
- Respect – Facility rules
- Prepare – Book in advance
- Screen – Don’t play if you are exhibiting symptoms.
- Play – Wear a mask to and from the court, come prepared to play including bringing water/sports drink. Don’t wipe hands on court surfaces during play
- Sanitize on completion of play
- Masked Spectators/team members allowed to watch within the revised gathering limits (50% of the normal capacity)
- Exit the facility after play.
For reference the general return to play guidelines for players and venues are attached for Players and Facilities/Coaches and Organizers.
President of Squash NS
Regrettably, Squash Canada has taken the decision to cancel all of the rescheduled Fall national championships due to lingering COVID-19 restrictions and concerns. The 2020 Canadian Mixed Doubles, the 2020 Canadian Junior (Closed) , The Canadian Senior National, the Canadian Masters and the Canadian U23 championships have been cancelled. There were still existed too many restrictions in effect such as no competition yet permitted in current Phase, limits on the number of people allowed in the facility and 14-day quarantine requirements for people returning to as many as eight provinces/territories.
Given the current uptick in cases in the certain parts of the country, SC has also postponed the 2021 Canadian Junior Open from Dec 2020, with plans to hold it in early summer 2021.
Given this information, and the dearth of open courts in the province, and the continued uncertainty over the opening of the courts at SMU, it is with sadness that I am officially cancelling the 2020 NS Open and the 2020 Atlantics.
Please note that the Board is looking at how we can look at providing some opportunities for sanctioned play and limited tournament play, however given the current public health constraints, whatever competitive play opportunities we can present will look different. As part of that we are putting together a survey to get an understanding of what you feel about return to competitive play and your safety. This will be sent out next week.
Given this the Board voted unanimously on Thursday to extend existing memberships for a further 120 days. This has the effect of extending memberships that were in place on 15 Mar 2020 for a total of 300 days. Please remember that memberships run on a 365 day basis vice a seasonal basis and so memberships will restart counting time on 9 Jan 2021.
Update, Based on Sport NS recommendations received on the evening of 15 Mar, the following updates are provided:
- HSL Session 5 start is postponed until 8 April 2020.
- Premier League schedule is paused until 7 April 2020.
An update on further changes will be posted by 31 Mar 2020.
The Board of Directors of Squash Nova Scotia voted on Friday to keep operating the Halifax Squash League and Premier League for the time being with added measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Players are asked to comply with the following recommendations:
- Wash your hands with soap and water frequently
- Take steps to maintain your distance on and off the court
- If you have travelled internationally, stay away from the courts for 14 days
- Do not wipe your hands on the court walls
- Bring and use your own water bottle
- Minimize spectators
- Avoid large group social gatherings
We will continue to monitor the situation and will suspend play for a period of time if it becomes necessary to do so.
President of the Board of Directors, Squash NS
In light of ongoing developments resulting from the coronavirus (COVID-19), the postponement of Canadian National Championships by Squash Canada and after consulting with authorities, the Squash Nova Scotia Board of Directors has taken the difficult decision to postpone the Nova Scotia Open and the Atlantic Open.
We recognize the importance of these tournaments to athletes. The decision has been taken reluctantly, but it is, however, taken foremost with the interest of the health of athletes, officials, volunteers, staff and all involved. It is also made as a socially responsible step given the current situation that is on an unfortunate escalating daily trend.
Contributing to the decision was that these events draw athletes from out of province and the Provincial government issued recommendations that we not send athletes to out of province events and that we not host events that bring athletes from out of province into the province.
Squash Nova Scotia will continue to monitor the situation and liaise with authorities and Squash Canada to do everything reasonably and safely possible to re-schedule these events later in the year and at a time that will support athlete preparation for the Canadian Championships that Squash Canada postponed yesterday.
Participants will be fully refunded respective entry fees. Squash Nova Scotia will also follow Squash Canada’s lead with respect to age eligibility “that participants’ age eligibility as at the original scheduled date of the event would apply so that no athlete loses the opportunity to compete in a given age.”
The board shares in the disappointment but hopes participants will understand that its decisions are rooted in prioritizing the health and well-being of members, visitors and their families.
President of the Board of Directors
Please register for the NS Open at https://clublocker.com/tournaments/10868/info
And for the Atlantics at https://clublocker.com/tournaments/11831/info
Sponsorship opportunities are available for both tourneys. Please contact email@example.com
SMUfit is hosting our 2nd annual Ray Souchereau Memorial Squash Classic.
Ray was an active member of our SNS community for many years as both a player and a ref. Unfortunately he passed away November 2018 from cancer.
Please join us in honouring him in our annual tournament the weekend of February 27- March 1.
Registration is now open via Club Locker: https://clublocker.com/tournaments/11875/info
For any additional questions please contact Matt Bishop.
There are only 2 MORE DAYS to register for the Dalhousie Open 2020 happening next weekend Jan 16-19th!!!
Shirts, food (including pizza on Friday) will be provided for free for all entrants. 2 matches guaranteed and second division available. If you want to encourage players from out of town to come, The Westin is offering us a special rate of $108/night, you can book here.
Men’s & Women’s E are new divisions for players with no tournament/league experience (Squash NS membership fee is waived) so if you know any beginners, please share with them!
Also, we will be selling Dal Squash hoodies (they’re awesome) so be on the lookout for those 🤩
REGISTER HERE: https://clublocker.com/tournaments/11728/info
If you’d like to volunteer during the tournament (and enter the tournament for free), please email firstname.lastname@example.org. The available shifts are:
Thursday 5-9 pm
Friday 5-9 pm
Sunday 9:15am – 2 pm
Shifts times are tentative until the draw schedule is made.
Feel free to share this email to whoever may be interested!
If you have any questions/concerns, please email me at email@example.com
See you all there!