To address rising travel costs to compete at major Junior Squash Championships, a Grants fund raiser by Willoughby MasterClass has assisted 4 talented Junior players to compete at the 2019 Australian Junior Squash Championship in Davenport.
Announcing the Grant Awardees on behalf of the Willoughby MasterClass, Neil Cutler, commented “The concept of subsidising Juniors travel costs to a National tournament is in keeping with our vision of encouraging talented, junior players who represent the future of our game, to compete at the highest level.
When we announced our Fund raising initiative in February this year we were overwhelmed by the support of sponsors, and the broader community, who shared our vision and helped exceed our expectations”
Darcy Evans, head of coaching and Juniors development at Willoughby Squash and Squash Mechanics commented “The four Grant recipients are Sydney Johnson, Maggie Goodman, James Sommer and Sam Goodman. They were selected for improving their competitive performances, commitment to training, coaching, overall sportsmanship and suitability as emerging role models in squash.
This MasterClass initiative reflects our own philosophy of identifying, encouraging and developing children to enjoy one of only a handful of sports that they can continue to play throughout their lives. We have several MasterClass members who have enjoyed squash from their junior years right though their 70s and are competing in Pennant as well as State, National and International Master Tournaments”.
Squash Mechanics and SquashSkills announce a game-changing partnership set to revolutionise Squash in Australia
Squash Mechanics and Squash Skills are thrilled to announce a new integrated partnership set to revolutionise current coaching programs and models in Australia. This partnership will benefit Squash players of all ages and abilities and delivers a powerful online and visual tool that will develop nurture and grow players for decades.
The Australian Squash scene needs to adapt to the digital world as more and more people are fixated on devices. In addition, we are moving into a time scarce environment, there is now a growing need for Australian players to learn skills on the go, through useful tutorials in the palm of their hand, and we have a solution to bridge the gap.
“Squashskills have placed themselves ahead of the game by developing an in-depth library focused on understanding what amateur players need to maximise their own abilities, whilst keeping it affordable and accessible to all. The ability to easily assess our Squash superstars videos and learn from our heroes is amazing! ” states Squash Mechanics managing director Peter Aitken
However, Squashskills is not just for players, it’s resource also heavily focus on developing coaching techniques and skills.
“We wanted to go way beyond simply putting videos online for amateur players. We wanted to build a resource that helped improve the standard of squash all over the World. That meant creating a tool that allowed coaches to manage their players training all in one place. We believe that the testing sections and session planning tool will help coaches with the additional support the need to get the very best out of their players.” – Peter Nicol, Former world #1.
Jethro Binns managing director of Squashskills quotes ‘We’re incredibly excited about the partnership that is being developed with Squash Mechanics. Times are changing and it’s exciting to be working so closely with such a forward-thinking partner in the Southern Hemisphere. Over the next few years, we will together to develop new initiatives that will improve the quality of amateur squash being played throughout the region.’
This new partnership opens the door for clubs and coaches alike to increase participation for players of all ages and standards. It offers a never before seen tool to engage and track players interests, skills, and development which enables coaches to easily build and tailor sessions around this valuable information.
If you, your coach or your club are interested in joining Squashskills and this exciting new partnership please contact Peter Aitken; firstname.lastname@example.org or 0413 135 813
Four days after hosting the Salming Super 7’s Exhibition, you can still feel the energy left behind by the players and the ever-enthusiastic crowd. The night was a huge success and arguably one of the best run Squash Exhibitions Sydney has seen since the previous Salming Super 7’s event in 2016. The team at Squash Mechanics and Willoughby Squash Club spent countless hours putting everything together for a flawlessly executed night of Squash at its best.
The day began with the scores of VIPs hitting with the professionals. Like kids waking up on Christmas Day, you could instantly feel the excitement of our VIP’s when they jumped on court with their heroes from the PSA World Tour. The hit consisted of some doubles and some shot and tactic based drills and routines, enlightening the VIP’s to new skills and techniques. A once in a lifetime opportunity and an unforgettable experience for all.
After a grueling session on the courts at Willoughby, the VIPs and Professionals took to the showers to freshen up for the next item on the agenda! The cooldown was aided by some cooling ales and ciders from one of the event sponsors, Young Henrys. The ever-popular “Newtowner”, “Natural Larger”, and “Summer Hop Ale” quickly quenched the efforts from the hit. This gave all our audience time to mingle with the players as they rolled through the doors in anticipation of the evening ahead.
The evening then proceeded to the Dining room upstairs. With the walls moved across on NSW only doubles & multi-purpose courts, the dining room greeted the guests with chandeliers hanging from the roof, reminding us of the great spectacle of the Tournament of Champions in New York. A projector played some of PSA Live TV’s best matches of 2018, and the black linen tablecloths were pressed and ready for the sumptuous feat ahead. As in 2016, the food was catered by Brett Deverall and the team at Sydney Cooking School. The dinner included Moroccan couscous, an amazing chicken curry, southern pulled pork burgers with coleslaw, Mediterranean pasta salad, and German hot dogs with sauerkraut and mustard. As our guests eagerly filled their plates to the brim our Staff were busy setting up a Live stream Broadcast to “The Roar”. We partnered with “The Roar” to deliver the event to more than 35,000 weekly viewers.
As the guests found their seats, the evenings MC and Australian Squash entrepreneur, Steve Walton, welcomed the guests and conducted a somewhat tongue in cheek but informative Q&A with the players. Nothing was off limits as the guests were wowed with stories from the tour, both past, and present. We missed the presence of the current Australian #1, Ryan Cuskelly, but luckily we had the footage from the recent World Teams Champs when he battled Kiwi Paul Coll in a 5 set grinder. Paul talked us through the “chicken dance” cramp that’s cusk suffered at the end of the fifth set. There was not a dry eye in the house, Hilarious.
Their close relationship was on show as player and coach quickly settled into the first 7 minute set for the evening. They put on a spectacular show for our audience, slotting winners, blocking each other and regularly bantering with each other and the crowd! The student prevailed over the coach in an epic 3 set thriller.
After their exciting, and entertaining match it was time for the “Salming Speed Gun”. ExMed director, Dr. Matt Hollings, pulled out the Speed gun that he sneaked from NSW police earlier that week! This state of the art piece of sports science hardware included two 20 inch Display screens, clearly engaging the audience with every shot the pro’s hit. All of our pros matched their ability not only with each other but with members of the audience.
Christine was first managing a top speed of 213kph, then Squash Superstar Sarah Fitzgerald stepped up to the plate clocking 202kph. Then for the lads. Paul Coll was first, with an impressive arm swing he managed a top reading of 242 kph. Then up stepped “killer”. The crowd favorite scorched the ball almost through the front wall clocking the night’s top speed 250kph! Rex Hedrick managed a top speed of 213 kph, and Zac Alexander was so close to claiming the title clocking 249 kph!
Next, it was time for a little bit of 4play action.The doubles set saw Sarah & Paul teamed up against Killer and Christine. This mixed doubles match between champions of past and present was a showcase of speed, agility, amazing retrieval and scintillating shots, in a spectacular and furious 7 min battle.
When the 4play action concluded we had a short break for guests to replenish their drinks as Squash Mechanics Pro and Westerfolds Sports Centre Manager, Rex Hedrick warmed up for his action-packed match against New Zealand #1, Paul Coll. Rex had the courage to wear a GoPro on his head, which surprisingly didn’t offset his balance considering the way it looked. Halfway through the match you could see the GoPro start affecting his playability and passing it off to the Superman himself, it didn’t take long for Clark Kent to throw it to the grandstands.
As the 7 min sessions progressed we saw all the players give it their all. Unlike shorter exhibition formats, the 7 min format allows the players to get settled in and really showcase their talents on the court. The players get warm and stay warm with the innovative and dramatic format created by the Squash Mechanics team.
Other evening highlights included Zach “The showman” Alexander, bringing out 2 rackets to battle the speed and retrieving skills of Paul Coll! Gotta say Zach would clean up most players with his left hand too! Then Zach faced Squash Mechanics Pro, Rex Hedrick. After some massive rallies, he asked the ref if he could blow his nose? He proceeded to pull out his hankey and drop dozens of five cent pieces all over the floor! What a time wasting masterpiece! Even though, the players then played the next few points dancing around the coins like revelers at Mardi Gras.
Paul’s physical strength began to shine through in his final match against Killer Karwalski! Rex and Zach decided to join Killer and battle the Kiwi superstar three v one! Even against these odds, Paul still managed to match the other three on court, bouncing between the three bodies like a pinball, picking up everything to the sheer delight of the crowd.
Such an amazing event could not happen without the Players. To Christine Nunn, Sarah Fitzgerald, Paul Coll, Rex Hedrick, Matthew Karwalski and Zach Alexander thank you for being part of the Salming Super 7’s 2018. Your professionalism, playing skills and sense of humor was greatly appreciated by all who attended the hugely successful event. We hope to see you all back for the 2019 installment.
Squash Mechanics are currently going through a massive expansion in the Squash Industry in Australia. Armed with new trademarked systems, processes, and programs The Mechanics are revolutionising Squash Clubs around the country. Squash Mechanics high-performance coaching arm, The Sydney Squash Academy, are delighted to welcome Matthew “KILLER” Karwalski to the team.
“Killer” turned pro in 2007 and won 4 PSA titles during his career. He achieved a career high ranking of #49 in the World in Dec 2013. Matthew represented Australia at the 2013 World Teams Championship and the 2014 Commonwealth Games. He also trained under ex-World #1 and multiple World Champion David Palmer in Orlando for 3 years.
“Matthew is a massive signing for Sydney Squash Academy and Squash Mechanics.”Jake Ebeid, Managing Director of Squash Mechanics states. “His international experience, representative background and ability will ensure we develop the excellence we are striving for.”
Matthew now has a renewed focus on helping and developing the next generation of junior and professional players. “Having grown up locally in Newcastle playing Squash before becoming a touring professional, I’ve played at Squash centers all over the world and seen the recent growth in Squash facilities in the US and Europe. Now that I’ve retired from the Professional Tour and settled down in Sydney, it’s wonderful to see Squash Mechanics and The Sydney Squash Academy with a vision for growing and developing the sport in Australia. Their holistic approach to management ensures that facilities, coaches, and programs are in place to deliver value to their clubs and members. I am truly looking forward to working with Squash Mechanics and The Sydney Squash Academy to help add value to their coaching team”, state’s ‘Killer’.
Matthews services will predominately be running from Lane Cove Squash Club and Willoughby Squash Club. He will be working directly with Sydney Squash Academy’s junior and senior professional touring players. To get in touch with ‘Killer’ contact him on 0402 372 921 or Matt@squashmechanics.com
Darcy is well known in the Squash scene in Australia both as a player and coach. The Tasmanian-born professional made the move to Sydney in 2013 chasing his dream of becoming a Professional Player. In that time he has worked under and with some of the greatest coaches in the World including RMS head coach, ex-World #2 and World Champion Rod Martin. Darcy is currently ranked #9 in Australia and #208 on the PSA World Rankings. “Darcy is an amazing coach” Ian Aitken, Willoughby Squash Club’s owner states.”His ability to connect with his students, his attitude, personality, and skills are amongst the best I have encountered in more than 40 years in the industry.”
“Willoughby Squash has a huge junior player base, many of who have just competed in the AJO in Darwin.” Darcy states “I can’t wait to get on court with all the juniors and help them get to the top of their game. There are going to be a lot of changes at the clubs and I am looking forward to seeing all the kids continue to improve.” Sydney Squash Academy will also be developing Junior programs at its other venues Lane Cove Squash and The Bondi Waverley Squash Club.
Have you ever wanted to play squash without having to work up the biggest sweat of your life? I know I have… Well without further adjure I’d like to take the time to introduce you to squash in virtual reality. That’s right developers have moved to create a video game where you can play as your favorite PSA players and see if you can unlock their full potential.
PSA squash has recently funded an exhibition to create Squash in virtual reality. Such players that will make an appearance in the game are Nick Matthew, Amr Shabana, Gregory Gaultier and the list goes on.
Considering squash is somewhat struggling with its publicity around the world, Alternative soft has taken the challenge to put one of the healthiest sports in the world into a video game.
With the continuing development of virtual reality and technology finally being able to be used in a more physical sense with VR headsets creating for more immersive games, this Wii interactive creating could really hit the interest for the younger generations and therefore repopulate the sport.
Willoughby Squash Club will be holding a World Squash Day event in conjunction with the NSW premier league held on the 18th October.
Free Food + Free Soft Drink,
Blow-up Squash Court,
Lucky Door Prizes,
Coaching Clinics (Adults and Kids),
Exhibition with Former World #38,
All New Participants Gain Free Entry Into A Monday/Tuesday Training Squad,
Premier League @3pm.
Free entry for everyone and please bring your friends and family to help open their eyes to the world of squash.
2014 Willoughby Open – Sydney Squash Circurt Event.
LAST CHANCE TO GET YOUR ENTRIES IN FOR WILLOUGHBY OPEN THIS WEEKEND 8th and 9th!!!!
Guarantee 3 matches, grades for all players, Psa event with great squash, awesome food with all proceeds going to East Coast squash academy junior development program.