The 10th Anniversary of the Can-Am Cup Doubles Squash Matches will be hosted by the Toronto Cricket Skating & Curling Club October 26 – 28, 2018. 10 years of memorable matches, each played at the standard of the Canadian or U.S. Championship finals, has built the reputation of the Can-Am as being one of the handful of most important doubles fixtures on the schedule.
The Can-Am Cup began in 2008 as a biannual doubles squash competition between Canada and the United States. Although the weekend exemplifies the very best spirit of sportsmanship, the Can-Am Cup is at its core a competition-based event. Team Captains are selected more than a year in advance and charged with bringing leadership, and the ability to recruit and motivate their country’s top doubles players, with the goal of producing a successful team result.
The Can-Am is divided into 3 competitions: the Men’s Bernheimer/Bell Trophy, the Women’s Gillen/Pierce Trophy and the overall Can-Am Cup. Canada and the U.S. field their best 2 pairs in 15 categories from Men’s Open to 75+ and Women’s Open to 60+. The North American rankings are used to identify the top ranked right and left wall players in each category, each who receive an invitation to their country’s team. The Canadian and U.S. Doubles Championships are recognized and any player winning their own country’s most recent championship receives an invitation to their country’s team.
Remaining selections and team pairings are made by the Captains based entirely on merit. A player that has teamed exclusively with the same partner may find themselves invited but not their partner. A player that has always successfully competed in younger age categories may be assigned to play in their own age division to ensure their team wins those matches. The Can-Am Cup is not about matching opponents to create competitive games. The Can-Am Cup is about winning convincingly and establishing their country’s dominance of North American doubles.
Day 1 of the Toronto 2018 matches will pit the #2 team from each country against the #1 team of the other in each division. Day 2 features the #1’s and #2’s facing off against their counterparts. New this year and a return to the original Cup format, Day 3 will feature 6 Mixed Doubles matches: one from the Open, 40+, 45+, 50+, 55+ and 60+ categories. The Mixed match results will only apply to the overall Can-Am results and not the Men’s and Women’s competitions.
The inaugural Can-Am in Boston 2008 saw the U.S team win convincingly. Two years later at Toronto 2012 the US team retained the Can-Am Cup despite the Canadians winning the men’s division. Buffalo 2012 saw Canada finally taking the Can-Am Cup by a mere 3 points but in Montreal 2014 the US recaptured it. At Wilmington 2016 the US retained the Cup despite losing the Bernheimer/Bell Trophy. The US has held the Cup for 8 of the 10 years it has existed, surrendering it only in Buffalo and hinting Hurricane Sandy somehow tilted the balance in favour of Canada.
The Toronto Cricket Skating & Curling Club is looking forward to hosting the best doubles players from Canada and the U.S. for 3 days and 66 matches under one roof. Canada is overdue to hoist the Cup!