Raneem El Welily Announces Immediate Retirement
World No.1 Raneem El Welily Announces Immediate
Retirement From Squash
No.1 Raneem El Welily has today (June 25) announced her immediate
retirement from professional squash, bringing to an end a phenomenal
18-year career that saw her capture a total of 24 PSA titles, including
the 2017/18 PSA World Championship.
The 31-year-old, who in 2015 made history by becoming the first Arab
female in any sport to become World No.1, ending Nicol David’s record
nine-year reign atop the World Rankings in the process, spent a total of
23 months at the summit of the rankings list - including the past 19
After claiming the World Junior Championship in both 2005 and 2007, the
biggest win of her senior career came in Manchester in 2017 when she
defeated Nour El Sherbini to win the World Championship at the third
attempt - after losing out to Nicol David in 2014 and to El Sherbini in
“For the past year or two I must have written these words in my head
over a thousand times. Squash has been my life for the past 25 years,
but the time has come for me to say goodbye,” El Welily said.
“What a ride it has been. When this journey started, I never thought
that it would take me this far. I have been so fortunate to have
witnessed many generations play the game, to have been inspired by so
many legends, and to have been a part of such a great era.”
A member of Egypt’s World Team Championship winning side on four
occasions, El Welily entered the history books again in 2019 after
husband Tarek Momen won the 2019/20 PSA Men’s World Championship -
making them the first married World Champions in any sport, a feat
recognised by the Guinness World Records earlier this year.
“I want to thank everyone who helped and supported me throughout my
career, starting off with my heroes and my number 1 fans - my parents,”
said El Welily.
“They are literally the reason behind everything that I've achieved and
everything that I am today. Thank you for the endless sacrifice and
“Tameem, my brother, whom I always struggle to find the right words for.
Thank you for always being there, in every possible way. A manager, a
coach, a friend and of course a brother.
“Over the years I've trained with many coaches, and I've always
considered myself so lucky to have crossed paths with a number of
talented, experienced and passionate coaches whom I had the chance to
spend time with and more importantly learn from.
“In 2010 I started working with Haitham Effat, my squash coach, and I've
probably been playing squash through his eyes ever since then. He has
been my guide on court and it is through his talent and vision that I
was able to reach my best, time and time again.
“My strength and conditioning coach, Ahmed Faragallah, who since 2009
has managed to keep me fit and strong.
“Mohamed Amin, the most talented physiotherapist I have ever worked
with, who I crossed paths with by mere coincidence when I rolled my
ankle during the 2014 Worlds. Dr. Hani Wahba, my nutritionist, and Ms.
Hala Metwally my masseuse, for all her energy-boosting sessions.
“I would also like to thank my sponsors; Harrow and Mark Kayden, Wadi
Degla and Karim Darwish, CIB and Hussein Abaza and Abu Qir Petroleum,
for their faith in me as an athlete but most importantly as a person.
“My fellow players and Egyptian teammates, it has been a wonderful
journey. Thank you for all the wonderful memories - I will really miss
you. And a huge thank you to the fans and supporters all over the world
for all your love and appreciation. You guys are the essence of our
“And last but obviously not least, my wonderful husband - traveling the
world with you and getting to share this journey with you has been a
huge blessing. I hope you'll keep shining in squash for a very long
“I don’t know what the future holds for me career-wise, but I do know,
that starting a family with Tarek is a priority for us. And whatever
challenges life may throw our way, I hope that I will be ready to face
El Welily's retirement means that current World No.2 Nouran Gohar will
replace her fellow Egyptian as the new World No.1 on July 1.