Racketball league recruiting now

League racketball is back!

The North West Counties Squash League is launching a Squash 57/ Racketball League 21/22 – so the hunt is on for Northern players.

 There will be two divisions – East and West – with The Northern up against Bowdon, Brooklands, Tame Valley, Cheetham Hill, City of Manchester, Fairways and Marple.

“We’d love to enter at least two teams for The Northern,” said NWCSL teams rep Garth van der Wath. “There will be 3 players per team to start with but this may change if numbers demand it.

“We’re hoping to start playing in December, if clubs can get organised in time. Otherwise the league will commence in January. Fixtures will be arranged between the club captains on a day and time to suit everyone, so could change week by week.

 * If you’re interested in playing, call or text Garth on 07506 925702

 ** And if you need to brush up your racketball skills, Ian Powell (above right) is running Racketball Training on Friday evenings @ 6pm – book now on Mindbody!

£1m-plus proposal to boost Club facilities

A detailed plan to increase the number of tennis courts at The Northern, introduce padel tennis and bring more courts under cover, has been prepared by the Executive Committee and will be submitted for planning approval over the next few weeks.

 The full proposal includes the demolition of the old Indoor Court 3 (the grey rectangle on the plan above) which is in need of replacement, and bringing the court floodlighting up to recommended standards.

The development is supported by both Manchester City Council and the Lawn Tennis Association and dialogue with the Club’s neighbours has been constructive and in the majority of cases positive exchanges have taken place.

“This is a hugely important expansion which will transform The Northern into a true multi-sport facility,” said Club Chairman Martijn de Lange.

“The extra court space is desperately needed to accommodate our growing membership and padel tennis will be an exciting addition for both squash and tennis players.

“Thanks to the increase in membership – plus the excellent work of our Management Team in bringing the Club’s finances back on track – we are now in a position to support the funding required for such a significant proposal.”

The Club is awaiting the outcome of the planning application for the upgraded floodlighting and the application to cover the remainder of the proposal is currently being finalised.

Further details will be confirmed in the coming weeks.

Gym’s new S+C facility

A new dedicated Strength & Conditioning facility is being built in the former tennis Half Court, to support the racquet programmes and individual members.

Equipment will include 4 squat racks which double up as deadlift platforms and a track for a sled – great for building leg and core strength – plus a large collection of weights and other S&C kit. New flooring will be laid throughout.

The facility will house a programme of strength and conditioning classes for both juniors and adults. It will also be bookable by the hour when not in use for classes, and PTs will use it for training sessions.

“We expect it to be busy as we have increased gym membership so successfully and this facility reflects the needs of our gym users,” said co-Gym Manager Lisa Pilkington.

“We aim to become a centre of excellence for S & C.”

Little Belters and big hitters …

… the new squash season starts here.

It’s hard to believe that a lot of people predicted COVID would be the death of squash!

The Northern is fielding more senior county league teams than any other Club in the region as nine men’s and four ladies’ squads start their league campaigns this week

Junior coaching – from Lisa’s Little Belters on a Sunday morning to the weekly improver, transition and performance squads plus Friday pay n play – is firmly back on track.

And phase one of the underfloor court heating is being installed next week.

All just in time for World Squash Day on Saturday October 9th. And to celebrate that Head Coach Jules Silvera is organising a doubles tournament, The Great Northern Doubles Mix.  £5 entry, he decides the pairings!

Sign up for all or any of the above – and more – on Mindbody.

 

Come to the tennis finals party

The Closed Tennis Championship is reaching a peak of excitement with some tense matches and top quality tennis expected on Finals Day, September 18th.

 Play starts at 11.30am, through to 6.30pm, with the grand presentation planned for 7pm. There will be a BBQ from 4 until late and special offers on drinks all night.

All members are welcome – so even if you’ve not been involved in the competition, just come on down, have a drink, and support your local tennis player!!

Juniors rule in squash Club Closed

For the first time ever, junior players won both the men’s and ladies’ titles at the squash closed championships last month.

 Finn Withington (17) scored a comprehensive victory over 2019 winner Josh Taylor to take the Ian Stewart Memorial Trophy, named in honour of  the Northern’s much missed past President Ian Stewart and presented (above) by James Stewart.

And Miriam Mulla (14) never dropped a game on her way to winning the newly revived Ladies’ Shield event, meeting another junior – Yara Soliman – in the final.

Yet another junior player, Will Gregson (18), took the Trophy B Event and Miriam featured again, winning the B event plate. “Northern squash has bounced back from the pandemic stronger than ever,” said Squash Chair Jane Wood. “And the future looks bright with such awesome young players coming through.”

Club Reception is a Glass Act

Looking for somewhere to hold a mini-conference – talk pre-match tactics – or just a space to work away from the bustle of the bar??

The new glass walling in the Club entrance area has created exactly that. The main alcove, which previously provided a home for the Trophy Cabinet but not much else, is now available for all Members to use for work or meetings.

* Depending on take-up a formal booking system may need to be introduced but for now, please just check with Reception staff before you settle in.

Meanwhile on the other side of the staircase, the stringing machine is the start of a small but perfectly formed pro shop which will shortly be fitted out to display a selection of sports kit and equipment available to order through Reception.

Squash is up and running – are you??

 

The great squash comeback has started – and our coaches are on the ball with expert advice to help players keep up the pace …

The internal team league is halfway through, NWCSL Summer League started on Thursday (great win for Northern 3 btw, well played Sam, Richard and Emily!)  and the Box Leagues relaunch on July 5th, so squash competition is well and truly back on the agenda.

Now Head Squash Coach Jules Silvera has released a training video to help players take their training to the next level and rebuild their game after a year and a half of disruption.

Filmed with fellow coach Nathan Mayers, the video is streaming now on the Northern Squash YouTube channel  ttps://youtube.com/channel/UCzq9YqG5mq22Djg3nie4tfQ

Meet Laura Massaro at The Northern

Former Squash Women’s World No 1 Laura Massaro will be signing copies of her new autobiography at The Northern on June 8th.

 All In:Becoming World Champion charts Laura’s journey from being a shy young athlete often crippled by self-doubt, to World No 1 and World Champion in an intense, gruelling sport.

Laura – seen above with some of the Club’s squash juniors at a Squash Girls Can event – has been a regular visitor to the Club over the years. She retired from the professional tour in 2019 and is now Junior Head Coach for Lancashire.

* The book signing event will run alongside a HEAD racket demo evening for both squash and tennis players so save the date – June 8th from 6pm – and come down for a hit with the racket that took Laura to the top!

New Head of Squash for The Northern

The Northern is delighted to announce the appointment of Jules Silvera as our new Head of Squash.

 Many members will already know Jules, who has been around The Northern almost since he could walk – he played here as a junior for many years before going off to University to study Psychology, followed by a Masters in Sport & Exercise Psychology.

More recently, he has been working as Head Coach at Grove Park Squash Club and Knutsford Squash Club, as well as writing on health and fitness for various websites.

Jules is already working on relaunching the Junior Programme, Family Squash, Team Training, Beginners’ Squash and Squash for Tennis Players – who should bear in mind it almost NEVER rains on a squash court. (I say almost because there has been the occasional blip when the gutters blocked …)

Jules said: “I am really looking forward to getting started as we look to grow the different pathways within the club.

“It’s been a tough year for squash all round the country, but I am confident that we can bounce back and bring success back to the Northern across senior, womens, and junior teams.”

Jules is busy finalising the timetable but meanwhile …

* Thursday May 27th & June 3rd: 7 – 8pm/ Squash Fitness;

* Thursday June 10th/ 18th & 24th: 7 – 8pm/ Team Training;

* Tuesday June 1st: 6 – 9pm/ Social Squash is Back!

* July 5th: Box Leagues relaunch – new members sign up now.