Northern Juniors Squash the Opposition!

The Northern’s young squash stars have recorded a string of successes in the past two weeks.

At the start of February the Club’s Junior 1st team – Fin Coote, Luke Chadwick, Will Gregson and Miriam Mulla – lifted the 1st Division trophy in the NWCSL Junior Winter League, beating teams from Grove Park, Prestbury and Haslingden.

Then just a week later, Finn Withington and Saran Nghiem (pictured above) won the Boys U-17 and Girls U-19 titles in the Manchester Junior Open, an England Squash Silver Event.

More than 250 youngsters from all over the UK competed in the Open, which was held on February 7th – 9th at three venues – The Northern, The National Squash Centre and Grove Park.

Saran won a tight 3-2 battle against Pontefract’s Asia Harris to take the Girls U-19 crown, while Finn recorded an impressive 3-0 win over Ben Beachill, also from the Yorkshire Club.

Both Saran and Finn play for The Northern’s 1st Division senior teams.

 

Northern Supports New Racketball League

The Northern has entered a team in a new Squash 57 (racketball) league launched by the North West Counties Squash League.

 

The team of three players – Gary Nickeas, Nick Chadwick and James Warner – played their first fixture against City of Manchester on Monday 18th November. Despite losing, Nick said: “It was good fun and a good workout!”

 

Racketball – known officially as Squash 57 because it is played on a squash court but with a larger, 57mm ball – is a mix of squash and tennis. The bouncier ball makes it harder to kill so rallies last longer and the result is – as Nick said – a really thorough workout.

 

The team is looking for more players and a racketball box league is being set up – look out for it on the squash noticeboard. “This isn’t just for squash players though,” said Squash Chair Jane Wood. “Tennis players pick up racketball really quickly and in the depths of winter – what’s not to like about a warm, dry squash court?”

 

Anyone who would like to try it out should contact racketball team skipper John Duckworth. Menwhile, rackets and balls can be borrowed from Reception and individual and group coaching is available from expert racketball coach Ian Powell on 07885 227173.

County Success for Northern Juniors

Northern juniors dominated the field at the Lancashire County Junior Squash Championships on 29 September.

They scooped the Girls’ U-11, U-13 and both Boys’ and Girls’ U-19 titles, plus took the runners-up spots in the Boys’ U-13 and Girls’ U-15 and U-17, along with 3rd and 4th places in four events.

“We had a strong presence at the Championships this year and our juniors’ hard work has really paid off,” said Head Coach Anna Vaughan Hawkins. “What a fantastic start to the season!”

Results were:

Girls U-11: Winner Perry Soliman; Runner-up Rosie Chadwick.

Boys U-11: 3rd place Nichol Weatherston. 4th place Ali Al-Rifa

 

Girls U-13: Winner Miriam Mulla. 3rd place Rosie White. 4th place Hala Allam.

Boys U-13: Runner-up Miriam Mulla.

 

Girls U-15: Runner-up Yara Soliman.

Boys U-15: 3rd place Fin Coote. 4th place Luke Chadwick.

 

Girls U-17: Runner-up Lucy Gibson. 3rd place Kate McNichol.

 

Girls U-19: Winner Saran Nghiem

Boys U-19: Winner Finn Withington.

Anna mentors England Squash coaching initiative

Northern Head Coach Anna Vaughan Hawkins has been appointed as a mentor for a new England Squash campaign to encourage more women into coaching

Squash Girls Can Coach is a 12-month, funded, structured programme of training, workshops and mentoring, designed to take candidates through their Level 1 and Level 2 coaching qualifications.

Anna herself was appointed to the Northern’s coaching team as Development Coach in 2016, together with Head Professional Julianne Courtice and Performance Coach Annette Pilling. At the time there was minimal junior coaching, no adult coaching and no schools programme.

Today, the Northern boasts a benchmark Junior Programme, Adult Beginners, Intermediate and Women’s/ Family sessions, and works actively with 13 local schools.

Anna, who plays for the Ladies’ 1st team, Men’s 5th team and the Welsh Masters Team, said: “I love it. Deciding to become a professional coach was the best decision I ever made.

“For the Club to appoint an all-woman coaching team raised questions at the time but I believe it has worked – for the guys as well! We have seen more men joining the club as well as women and juniors.”

Watch Anna being interviewed by copy and pasting the link below

* Applications for Squash Girls Can Coach close on 22 November 2019. For more information go to https://www.englandsquash.com/squashgirlscancoach

Lisa Lifts Silver for England

Club member Lisa Pilkington won a Silver medal for England in the Commonwealth Powerlifting Championships in St John’s, Canada on September 15th – 21st.

 

Lisa lifted 95kg – a personal best – in the Women’s Raw Master Bench 84+ event. “It’s the first time I have ever represented my country or competed in any international event,” she said. “I was totally buzzing when I won silver!”

 

Lisa, who captains the ladies’ 1st team at squash and is also a qualified Personal Trainer, first became interested in weight training when she started a painting and decorating business and needed to lift heavy ladders. She moved into powerlifting and started entering competitions just over a year ago and is now ranked 4 for England overall and 3 for the bench press.

 

The England team is largely self-funded and a GoFundMe page started by Lisa’s friends and family raised the £2,000 needed in just six days. “I am totally humbled by everyone’s generosity and support,” said Lisa.

Julianne flies out for the new tournament season

Head Squash Professional Julianne Courtice, ranked 31 in the world, is heading out to Shanghai for the Chinese Open, her first date on the 2019/20 PSA World Tour season.

 

Julianne has been a member of The Northern since 2011 and plays for the both the men’s and ladies’ 1st teams. Her World Ranking has risen 20 places in just the last six months and this is a key season for her – can she break into the top 20? “Training has been going well and I’m ready for the next step!” she said.

 

From Shanghai she will fly to Nantes for the French Open, back up to Edinburgh for the European Club Championships, out to Philadelphia for the US Open and then back to Egypt for the World Championships, being played this year on a stunning outdoor glass court alongside the Pyramids at Giza.

 

She gets a break during Novermber, then it’s off again for the Hong Kong Open in December.

 

Follow her progress on either Squash TV or YouTube. And good luck Jules!