KINGS OF THE SQUASH COURT
At the inaugural Bradford schools squash festival organised by the Heaton Assistant coach Saeed Ahmad, 3 Secondary schools played in the event. The 21 players from Bradford Grammar, Beckfoot & St Bede’s schools competed in an after school competition held at Heaton Tennis & Squash club.
There were some very close games and the standard of play was high; with nationally ranked under 13 players Ben Merchant (Bradford Grammar) and Will King (Beckfoot) showing their class. But with 7 players in each team the endeavours of other players were just as important. The format for each match was the best of 3 sets to 15 with PAR scoring. There was also an intermission so that parents and players could watch the ‘professional squash’ players – Simon Parke and Eddie Charlton contest some long rallies.
With court time running out, the final matches were reduced to 1 set. The final totals for each school were: Bradford Grammar 10, Beckfoot 15 and St Bede’s 15. The overall winner was decided on by the toss of a coin, as no court time was available. Beckfoot were declared the winners, although they were grateful to St Bede’s for the loan of players.
The event was followed by a buffet and presentation of the trophy, kindly paid for by Bradford Grammar school. The outstanding player of the event was awarded to Eugene Amponsah (St Bede’s) for his excellent court etiquette and the Beckfoot team captains, the King brothers with Connor Braid received the trophy.
Afterwards many parents applauded the organisation and Sally Merchant commented ‘the matches were played in a good spirit with the emphasis being an inclusive team event.The facilities and the food were appreciated by the hungry players, having come straight from school’. Others said it was nice to see children so enthusiastic about squash and by watching the professionals display some amazing squash, they will all be inspired to progress in the sport.
According to organiser Saeed Ahmad a number of players have already made enquiries about joining the club and attending coaching groups. More information regarding squash opportunities at Heaton Tennis & Squash club can be found on www.heatontennis.squash.co.uk