In September of 2009 I changed squash clubs due to a move and since then I have made some serious changes to my game too. I had a chance to play one of my friends at my old club the other day and there was a startling difference in both of our styles of play. We both had pretty predictable styles of play before, very different in that I almost always played long and he always tried to go short.
My change in play has come from a couple of different factors. I wanted to improve my game and realized that I was far too predictable and that could players would exploit that. The other was that my fitness has gone down in the last few months mostly due to a lack of playing competitive matches.
My friend’s change of play is the exact opposite. He played short a great deal before and has now started to work towards a more traditional length game. He has been moving up the ranks in the league he plays in and has found that going short so quickly and often in play was costing him matches as the better players he was playing against were picking the ball up early and putting him on the defensive. He has always been a good squash player with excellent control over the ball and his new style of play of keeping it tight on the rails and waiting for a good opportunity to attack short is really paying off for him. His record in league play has definitely improved and it is due to his hard work.
We have not played since I moved until a couple of days ago and the difference in the style of match was staggering. It was noticed by both of us and some others that were watching. The extra variety in my game really paid off as I made him work very hard by using all four corners very effectively. His patience and willingness to go up and down the wall worked well for him as some of my attempts to go short were ill-advised as the ball was too tight and I left the ball open and put myself in some bad situations.
For me I know there is a happy medium from where I was and where I am now. It is a process though. I am working the ball around the court much better now but probably going short more than I should but that is okay as I understand it and it is a deliberate attempt to improve. My end goal of this is to get back to my normal fitness level when playing league games and to incorporate the added variety I have been working on in to my game to force players to cover and respect all four corners as I can attack effectively to all of them.