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Squash: 'Animal' Ant out to avenge Ashes.

AUSSIE ace Anthony Ricketts is top seed at the ISS Canary Wharf Squash Classic in London next month.

The high-flying Ricketts is seeded to meet French star Thierry Lincou in the final as he steps up his bid for the world No.1 slot.

Reading-based Ricketts began the year in fine style by winning the Australian Open in Melbourne, beating hard man David Palmer in the final.

He raced up the rankings last year by taking both the British Open in Manchester and the Tournament of Champions in New York after missing most of 2004 through injury.

England's rising star James Will-strop is seeded three at Canary Wharf, with co-promoter Peter Nicol, pictured right, at four.

Willstrop, the inaugural Canary Wharf champion in 2004, lost to Ricketts in the British Open final, but he and Nicol - who recently led England to World Team Championship victory in Pakistan - are out to follow the Ashes success by gaining more glory on the squash court.

Nicol said: "All the Brits and Aussies are looking for good performances at Docklands before we head Down Under for the Commonwealth Games in March."

Former world No.1 Nicol has tipped Willstrop to top the rankings in the not-too-distant future, but super-fit Ricketts is currently at three ... and rising.

Willstrop said: "Ricketts is like an animal on court.

"He never gives you a moment's rest. He charges around the court and keeps getting the bloody ball back!"

ISS Canary Wharf Classic, Feb 13-17. Venue: East Wintergarden, Canary Wharf. Tickets from Ticket hotline: Full details from w
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Jan 22, 2006
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