Head of Communications & Community Engagement Officer
Why did you join the Berkshire Squash Committee?
Squash has been good to me for over 40 years (my knees may disagree), and I’m passionate about getting more people to play and enjoy the game. It was clear at the recent AGM that there’s a need for more squash coaches, more promotion to new audiences, and a real desire to get squash back on the map in the county. I’m hoping that with my marketing and coaching experience, and passion for the game, I can help.
Where and when did you start playing squash?
I first picked up a racket at Reigate squash club, aged about 10. I was allowed on court, in my socks, after my Dad had played his team match. I was hooked from that moment on.
Who was your biggest influencer in the game?
My Dad – #8 England amateur, and GB and England Team Manager for 12 years from ‘79. It provided me with the opportunity to meet most top English players and coaches at a personal level and watch top matches at the British Open. Court time with him was always competitive and very tiring! His goal was to not lose to me until I was at least 21. He swears he did, but I’m not so sure! Coaching tips ranged from moving forwards during the warm-up to speed up your reactions, to taking the ball early, and hiding the fact you’re absolutely shattered when you come on for the fifth!
What was your most important squash development?
Learning early on that playing for the enjoyment of the game was far more important than winning at all costs.
What was your most significant squash event?
Winning the Malta Open in ’96 having scored 2 points in the first 2 games, and surviving 2 match balls. I still don’t know how.
What is your proudest squash moment?
Returning after a serious illness to win the Blackheath Club championship. And seeing the enthusiasm and enjoyment on the faces of juniors I’ve coached.
What other squash successes have you had?
Winning 2 points – not games – against a top Australian player in a Surrey cup match. (And I thought I was the ringer playing at 5!).
Representing various clubs over the years: Sandown Park, Blackheath, Lambs, Jesters, Escorts, Swans, Camberley Fitness First and Bracknell.
Winning the Sandown Park Club Championship, and Blackheath Club Championship several times. Almost representing Berkshire in the O50s! We were obviously very short of players, but it was nice to have been asked. Shame it was snowed off!