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The world's leading players pledged their support for the World Squash Federation's bid for Squash to become an Olympic sport by signing a declaration that "An Olympic Gold Medal Would Be The Ultimate Prize In Squash".

World number ones Amr Shabana, of Egypt, and Nicol David, from Malaysia, led the players' call for the sport to join the Olympic Games programme in 2016 at a 'Countdown to Copenhagen" reception in Manchester today (Wednesday), hosted by the WSF and led by its President Jahangir Khan, one of the sport's greatest players of all time.

Squash is one of seven sports which have been short-listed by the IOC for consideration for the 2016 Games - the decision for which will be made in Copenhagen in October 2009.

Jahangir Khan outlined the sport's Olympic credentials and the timetable of the bid process over the next twelve months.

"We have a year to ensure that we do what needs to be done to get Squash into the Olympics. All parties have to work closely, with everybody pushing hard to try to do their best to make this happen," said the six-time world champion and record ten times British Open winner.

Khan pointed out that an IOC delegation, comprising Sir Craig Reedie and Pierre Ducrey, will attend the Manchester World Championships later in the week.

The WSF President expressed his gratitude to all the players who had taken time out from the World Championships to attend the reception.

"We are delighted that all the players have signed our pledge - showing that it would be a dream come true for all players for Squash to get into the Olympics.

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