PLAYER FROM YALE UNIVERSITY
BGS PERSONALISED PROGRAMS. Testimonials: PLAYER FROM YALE UNIVERSITY. New Haven (CONNECTICUT).
Barcelona Global Squash was delighted to welcome a top player from Yale University a few weeks ago for an intensive training program. Hi is one of a small number of college players who is combining university studies with professional competition.
We caught up with him after his stay in BGS and asked him the following questions:
YOUR EXPERIENCE IN BGS.
BGS: You’ve recently returned to the US after a 4 week intensive training program in Barcelona Global Squash working with Head Coach Victor Montserrat and Head Fitness, Strength & Conditioning Coach Bet Consegal; how would you summarise your experience there?
The training we did at BGS was both hard and effective. The sessions are long and 100% focused on very squash specific details that allowed me to improve my game quickly. They both have an amazing knowledge of the game and I learned a lot from both of them.
BGS: You’re going into your junior year this coming September; how do you see your future in squash developing over the coming years and what do you consider you need to move forward in your development?
I hope to finish my college career on a high and go on to the pro circuit full time. I hope I can continue to steadily improve my PSA ranking as well and believe I can be a top player. If I want to achieve these things however I think there is no other way to do it than to put in a lot of hours of hard work. There are still many things I have to learn and to improve in my game and I am excited to work on these things. I feel I also need good competition to push me. BGS provides the perfect atmosphere for a developing pro player like me as we worked every day to improve ourselves and we were all 100% focused on that.
BARCELONA – THE CITY.
BGS: Barcelona is of course an Olympic city, one of Europe’s most colourful and dynamic cities that enjoys one of the best climates in all of Europe; tell us how you found the city, its people and all it offers.
The city was amazing. It has so much culture including architecture, food, history, etc. I never found there was a dull moment in the city as there were so many new and interesting places to visit.
THE COLLEGE SQUASH ASSOCIATION (CSA).
BGS: You’ve participated in college squash now for two years and in parallel you’ve being pushing your own athletic career ahead, competing in PSA events, etc.; where do you position the current competitive level of college squash compared to what you have found outside of the college and university athletic scene in the professional world?
College squash is getting stronger for sure. There is a much more international pool of players and much more diversity of playing styles as well. I feel many of the top players in college (say top 20) are equivalent to many top 120 level pros that I have played against on the PSA. Playing in college has been a great experience for me so far and, given this good competition, has helped me to improve.
BGS: Squash in the US, on the North East Coast and in the Bay area in San Francisco, and in particular junior squash is growing at rates that are unknown around the rest of the world; middle and high schools are investing in state-of-the-art facilities that would be the envy of some national federations: how do you account for this double digit increase in participation, tournaments, investment, etc.?
There is no doubt that squash is growing in the US. I feel that linking the sport with education has something to do with this increase as now children are able to get a good education and play squash as well. However, I do feel it is a bit of a double edged sword because though many juniors are playing in the US, the sport is not their top priority.
BGS: And finally, the Yale men’s team unfortunately dropped down to Division II at the end of last season; how do you see your college team progression next season and what’s required to take you all back to Division I and to achieve the results of previous years?
From a team standpoint, we were not as strong and fit as we should have been last year. I am excited for this new year to work with the freshman students coming in as I feel they are excited to work hard. I think our coaches are also working hard to put together better practice plans for us. But as I stated before about my own improvement, there is no easy way out and if we want to win we have to put in the hours of hard work together.