Hashim Khan, 69, considered the greatest player in the history of squash, showed last night that age has done little to impair his skill.
Khan, a seven-time world champion, defeated his nephew, Mo Khan, 15-13, 14-15, 13-14 (2-5), 15-4 and 14-13 (5-2) in an exhibition at the Washington Squash Racquets Club. Although Mo Khan, 27 years younger than his uncle, said winning the exhibition was not a main concern, that could not diminish the skills and trick shots the elder Khan displayed.
Squash has been dominated by the Khan family of Pakistan since Hashim won his first world title in 1949 at 37. Hashim and Mo are the only players in the world to win championships in world play (a nine-point game played with a soft ball) and North American competition (a 15-point game played with a harder ball). Another nephew of Hashim's, Sharif Khan, is one of the top squash players in the world.
"For one game, he can beat anyone," Mo Khan said of his uncle. Mo Khan is still a regular tour player, ranked 13th in the world.
Hashim Khan, who plays in tournaments and exhibitions year-round, has won three straight masters championships and will defend his title this week in London. He relies on bursts of power and some finesse, but his spinning maneuvers and quickness exceed what should be expected of a man his age.
Last night he also told stories between games, and during play hit behind-the-back and between-the-legs shots. All his trick shots reached the back wall.