The Boast - April edition

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APRIL 2024

ELLA LASH WINS

AUSTRALIAN JUNIOR OPEN

SQUASH NZ CELEBRATES NEW LIFE MEMBERS

NATIONAL PROMOTION SQUASH SQUAD

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CONTENTS 4. Upcoming events 5. Squash NZ Celebrates New Life Members 6. The Notice Board 7. Volunteer of the month 8. Australian Junior Open 9. Oceania Junior Open 10. Junior Trans Tasman 11. Referee - in the hot seat 12. National Squash Promotion 13. Blast from the past 14. Coaching workshops and other coaching opportunities 16. SquashLevels FAQ Answered 16. Racketball 19. National Tournament Calendar Stay updated with our other channels 5 11 8 16

Chief Executive Update

Listening to all the feedback on the talent and dedication displayed by our young squash players over the recent 10 days in Australia fills me with immense pride. Hearing about their journey through the Australian Juniors, Oceania Juniors, and the Trans-Tasman Junior Test Series has been inspiring. The intensity of their efforts, despite the obvious exhaustion, speaks volumes about their commitment to becoming the best they can be. While I may not boast youth or extraordinary talent, I find myself eagerly soaking in the wisdom from Jonathan Kemp and Catherine Logan-McLeod, our leaders in our

High-Performance program, who are helping the players improve their game and reshaping how they approach training, gameplay, and self-management. As we eagerly anticipate the upcoming NZ Juniors in Palmerston North this weekend, I am filled with anticipation to witness these young players go head-tohead once again. Don’t forget to view our livestreaming of the event from Friday; see the following link: https://digitalvision.live/livestreams/ nz-junior-open-2024/

Ngā mihi Martin Dowson

Upcoming events

Waikato Open

Barfoot & Thompson

Auckland Open PSA Challenger

Southland Open

Waikato Masters

Canterbury Masters

Canterbury Junior Age Groups

Mitchell Cup & Cousins Shield

Don’t miss any upcoming events.

Venue

Squash Gym Palmerston North

Taupo Squash Club

Hamilton Squash & Tennis Club

North Shore Squash Club, Auckland

Squash City / ILT Stadium Southland

Morrinsville Squash Club

Marlborough Squash Rackets Club

Marlborough Squash Rackets Club

Hawkes Bay Squash Rackets Club

Click HERE to access the full tournament calendar

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Date 26th - 28th April 3rd - 5th May 10th - 12th May 17th – 19th May 24th - 25th May 24th - 25th May 24th - 25th May 26th - 28th May 31st May – 2nd June
Event
Zealand
BOP
New
Junior Open
Open

Squash New Zealand Poipātū Aotearoa Celebrates New Life Members

Three of New Zealand’s most long standing and respected administrators/athletes have been honoured for their contribution to the sport in New Zealand. Grant Smith, Doug Lawrie and Wayne Werder were officially made Life Members at the at the Squash New Zealand Poipātū Aotearoa Annual General Meeting in late March.

Grant Smith

Grant Smith’s life membership follows four decades of involvement in squash, first as a player, before becoming an admired administrator and event promoter. Smith’s commitment to promoting squash on the world stage is particularly noteworthy. In his role as President of Central Squash and Club President at SquashGym, Smith oversaw operations as Palmerston North played host to two prestigious World Championship events – the 2006 World Junior Men’s Championship and the 2010 World Women’s Team Championship. The events were extremely well run and elevated the profile of squash in New Zealand while also showcasing the country as a premier destination for international competition.

He has also sat on the Hall of Fame Board and Hall of Fame Selection Panel, helping to record the squash’s history in New Zealand and celebrate its athletes.

Lawrie is widely regarded as one of the most influential figures in New Zealand squash history, with his involvement helping to shape the game in Aotearoa and Squash New Zealand Poipātū Aotearoa is pleased to name him a life member.

Wayne Werder

Wayne Werder’s involvement in squash began as an elite player, representing New Zealand at the Kuala Lumpur Commonwealth Games in 1998 where he competed in the mixed doubles and men’s doubles.

Smith’s organisational and interpersonal skills transcended squash and saw him elected Mayor of Palmerston North in 2015, a position which he holds to this day and one which he says keeps him even busier than his time in squash.

Doug Lawrie

Doug Lawrie is potentially the longest serving squash administrator in the country, with an impressive 75-year tenure in the sport.

Lawrie first became involved in squash as an athlete aged 15 in 1948. In the 1950’s he grew into one of the foremost players in New Zealand, winning the Cousins Shield (the premier event of the time) in 1956 and 57. He continued to play to a high level in the 60s while also moving into administration, working as a selector, team manager and a coach.

Lawrie’s hands-on approach to coaching, coupled with his keen tactical analysis moulded numerous national champions and world class players including Joanne Williams, Stuart Davenport and Tamsyn Leevey.

Transitioning into administrative roles, his impact on Squash New Zealand became even more pronounced. Serving as the Squash NZ Operations Manager for six years and later as Chair of the Squash NZ Board, Werder played a crucial role in shaping the direction of the organisation, with his leadership and vision instrumental in driving initiatives aimed at advancing the sport nationwide.

Werder has also held roles as Assistant Coach/Manager for various international championships, including the 2017 World Doubles Championships and the 2018 Commonwealth Games teams, where his extensive experience both on and off the court made him a valuable asset to New Zealand’s athletes.

More recently Werder was instrumental in running the New Zealand Festival of Squash, acting as the Tournament Director in 2022 and 2023. The event not only brought international squash back to New Zealand but also showcased the country on the global stage. Werder’s vision and determination were key in making these events a resounding success.

Werder’s dedication to the sport has left an enduring legacy, and one which makes him a worthy recipient of a life membership.

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Grant Smith Doug Lawrie Wayne Werder

The notice board

What’s happening in our community

NATIONAL OFFICE STAFF

Goodbye Tyler / Welcome Brooke

On 19th April we say goodbye to Tyler as she begins maternity leave. Her contributions to our promotion and event management have been significant over the last two plus years, and she’ll be missed. We wish her well as she embraces motherhood.

SQUASH MIDLANDS

Grow the game with Squash Walls

Squash Midlands new district coach George Thomas has been out and about with our Squash Walls, introducing hundreds of school students to squash around their district. First up was 112 Year 5-8 students with a 5-week programme at Waihi School.

As Tyler begins her maternity leave, we’re thrilled to introduce Brooke, who’s stepping in to cover Tyler’s role. Brooke is a squash player, hails from the Bay of Plenty and brings with her experience from her time in Sydney, where she played a similar role for NSW Squash. We’re excited to have her on board. Thanks to our squash community for their support during this transition. Our dedication to quality national events remains strong. Farewell to Tyler and welcome to Brooke as we look forward to continued success.

WAIKATO GENERAL MANAGERMaternity leave position - fixed term

Squash Waikato are hiring!

Squash Waikato’s current General Manager, Nicki Blake, is going on parental leave from early July 2024. The role will be advertised on Seek, you can check it out here: www.seek.co.nz

If you know someone that would be interested in applying, then please direct them to the link above or get in contact via email to board@squashwaikato.co.nz

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Anita Vickers April

Congratulations to Anita Vickers for her recognition as ‘Volunteer of the Month’ for the month of April acknowledging her dedication not only to her Palmerston Squash Club in Otgao but to the promotion of the sport of squash as a whole.

After farming all day as well as contributing to other country community based activities, she then turns her hand to running every aspect of a successful country squash club during her very small window of leisure time. Cleaning courts/club rooms; organising and running tournaments; cooking magnificent suppers for visiting interclub teams &

tournament players; club administration/treasurer roles & membership secretary; Isquash/Mysquash administrator is to name just a few of the many tasks undertaken by Anita. She also runs their weekly club night, club meetings and is their representative on the Dunedin Games/Interclub Committee.

In between this, she plays weekly interclub, sometimes more than once a week, filling in where needed and is a regular competitor in our local club ‘Open’ tournaments. Club President, Rob Hewett in nominating Anita said - ‘It’s fair to say that we would struggle to function as a club without her dedication’.

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australian junior open

MELBOURNE,

April 8th marked the first day of competition for the what was to be an absolute marathon effort for our junior squash players.

The first tournament was the Australian Junior Open, it was run over 4 days with most players having 5 matches against players representing Pakistan, Malaysia, Malta as well as Australia and New Zealand. Matches started at 8.30am every morning. The heat was real and the courts were bouncy. These challenges presented a mental battle as our players required extra focus to control the ball, and an increased physical challenge as the ball was hard to put away so the rallies were extra long.

Our kiwis put in an incredible effort and the results speak for themselves. Most notable, the absolutely amazing Ella Lash won the Under 19 girls division, after being 0-2 down in the final. The only way to describe the match is goosebumps. Our kiwi contingent was so excited at the end of the match they almost stormed the court. She was swept up in a pile of hugs before she even had time to catch her breath. In true kiwi style she was awarded the title and delivered her acceptance speech with no shoes on.

Brodie Bennett made the final in the Under 17 boys division and put in a big effort and ultimately finished in the runner up position. Sophie Hodges, Oliver Dunbar, Aria Bannister, Brooke Valois and Yusra Rashid all finished third in their divisions.

OUR NEW ZEALAND PLAYERS WHO MADE THE PODIUM

U19 Girls 1st Ella Lash

U17 Boys 2nd Brodie Bennett

U19 Girls 3rd Sophie Hodges

U19 Boys 3rd Oliver Dunbar

U17 Girls 3rd Aria Bannister

U15 Girls 3rd Brooke Valois

U13 Girls 3rd Yusra Rashid

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AUSTRALIA / 8-10th April

Oceania Junior Open

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA / 12-14-th April

No one had time to catch their breath after the Australian Junior Open, we were immediately back into the action the next morning (6.45am start for those practising). The Oceania Junior Open was to run across the next 3 days. The same number of matches, less days to play them, things were somehow to get even more intense. Despite the enormous physical effort each day required, and the incredible mental strain of enduring the pressure of international competition, the mood of the players remained fun, positive and just really keen. The kiwis were bouncing around the courts, chit chatting amongst themselves and making new international friends. When it was game time they were focused and composed, performing like seasoned professionals. There was not a single behavioural issue with any of our players across the entire trip (10 days and about a million matches), something we can all be extremely proud of.

OUR NEW ZEALAND PLAYERS WHO MADE THE PODIUM

U19 Boys

1st Oliver Dunbar

U17 Boys

1st Brodie Bennett

U19 Girls

2nd Ella Lash

U17 Girls 2nd

Erin Wylie

U15 Girls 2nd

Brooke Valois

U19 Boys 3rd

Freddie Jameson

U19 Girls 3rd

Sophie Hodges

U17 Girls 3rd

Justine Pausch

U11 Girls 3rd

Olivia Michalakis

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Junior trans tasman test series

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA / 15-16th April

Somehow, after all of that (Aus Jr Open and Oceania Jr Open), it was now time to play the Trans Tasman test series. At this stage, its safe to say, players from both countries were beyond exhausted. Despite it all, our players needed to dig deep, find energy from somewhere, pull on their silver ferns and represent New Zealand, some of them for the first time. And they did it. Although we did not come away with the win (with Australia ultimately winning the series 20-12) our kiwis gave it everything. Till the last match they were fighting.

With some of the biggest efforts coming from some of our littlest players. Special shout out to Aggi Grifths who managed to beat a player ranked considerably higher than her in the girls Under 15 division.

Players and coaches headed back to New Zealand exhausted but full of pride and excitement for the future. So many incredible lessons, so many amazing results, and an experience that you know they will remember forever.

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referee - in the hot seat

NICKY MCNAUGHT

Club/District Affiliation:

Makarewa, Southland

Referee Certification:

WSO Level 3

Referee Experience:

How long have you been refereeing? 7 years

Refereeing Philosophy:

What do you believe are the most important qualities for a referee to possess?

Professional presentation. The players work hard to be the best they can be, and we need to do the same. We need to do what we can to prepare ourselves and bring the best version of our skills to the referee seat f or a match.

Memorable Moments:

Any memorable experience as a referee you wish to share?

I have been fortunate to be appointed to the World Games in 2022 and the World Men’s Teams in Tauranga last year. At these events, I have refereed some of the top players in the World which is pretty exciting.

Advice and Tips:

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in becoming a squash referee?

Make yourself available to attend events, sit with the referees, and marking for them is a great way to learn. Ask questions and be open to learning from others, everyone has something that we can learn from them

Future Goals:

How do you plan to continue improving your skills and knowledge as a referee?

My aim is to work toward appointment at more international World or PSA events. There are always opportunities to learn from other Squash referees and I think we also need to look at how other sports develop officials and see what we can gain from them too.

Hey Ref!

QMy opponent is off court changing his racquet due to broken strings. Can I go and get a drink at the same time?

A

You are not entitled to leave the court as of right, you must ask the referee and it is at their discretion.

Rule 15.3

Players may not leave the court during a game without the permission of the referee.

Do you have a refereeing question or a situation you are not sure about?

Chances are others may have the same query. Send your query to our NZ Referees c/mikejack@xtra.co.nz and we will share the answers with the squash community each month.

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NATIONAL SQUASH PROMOTION - SQUASH SQUAD

FREE TWO-WEEK INTRODUCTORY SESSIONS WITH SQUASH SQUAD!

Invite your friends and family now to register for squash squad where they get two FREE introductory sessions during May at a participating squash club.

They will learn everything they need to know to get started with like-minded women and embark on a journey of fun, fitness and friends!

Once registered, clubs will reach out in late April or early May with more information around the session dates and times for the nearest participating club.

Straight away they will also receive in their inbox our Beginner’s Guide to Squash to get them started with loads of handy tips including details of all our affiliated squash clubs in case they want to jump onto a court straight away!

Plus, register between 10 April and 5 May 2024 and go into the draw to win an Squash Squad starter prize pack which includes a Dunlop squash racquet, bag, and ballsvalued at $500!!

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More info & Sign up

THE FIRST WOMEN’S CHAMPION…

Nancy New, New Zealand’s first women’s squash champion, was ahead of her time. The Palmerston North player won the New Zealand Championship in 1951, 52, 54, and 55, and was runner-up on two other occasions.

A national championship for women wasn’t introduced until 1951, by which time New was 31. New’s club had been pushing for a national women’s championship for some time by then.

Like most New Zealand squash players of her time, New progressed to squash from tennis. When she first played squash, in 1938, she was the only female member of the Palmerston North club. In fact, she forced a change in club rules when she applied for membership. She went on to win the club championship 13 times between 1939 and 1957.

Click here to learn more about the story of New Zealand squash and to purchase Long or Short by Joseph Romanos

check out our annual report for 2023

Coaching

REGIONAL COACHING WORKSHOPS

For those aspiring to learn or enhance their coaching skills in far north or south, it’s highly recommended to attend the upcoming workshops

Northland:

12th May: Wellsford Squash Club with Paul Hornsby

9th June: KeriKeri Squash Club with Paul Wright

For more information contact Gaye Trimble admin@squashnorthland.co.nz

Otago:

Saturday 18th May: Alexandra

Sunday 19th May: Dunedin

For more information contact Aynsley Munro aynsley@squashotago.co.nz

COACHING MENTORING OPPORTUNITY

SNZ is offering a unique opportunity for club coaches to benefit from mentoring sessions facilitated by some of the nation’s most seasoned coaches. This exclusive chance provides individualised support to elevate your coaching skills, on and off the court. Spaces are limited, so if you’re eager to enhance your coaching prowess, don’t miss out!

Register your interest HERE

COACHING OPPORTUNITY –

Devoy Squash & Fitness Centre Tauranga

Devoy Squash & Fitness Centre are looking for a Development Coordinator and Resident Coach to take the premier Squash Club in the country to the next level. The development role is a 20-hour-per-week paid position with the further opportunity for a Resident Coach to develop their own coaching network.

Full position description at: www.devoysquashandfitness.co.nz

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‘LEARN TO BE A COACH’ Facilitated by Jason Fl etcher (SNZ Coach Development Leader)

Learn the tools, resources & information needed to get star ted in squash coaching

Saturday 18 th May 2024 (Alexandra Squash Club)

Sunday, 19 th May 2024 (Otago Squash Club)

Registrations & enquiries to Aynsley Munro

Friday, 10 th May 2024

Email: aynsley@squashotago.co.nz

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CLUB COACHING WORKSHOP

squashlevels FAQs

ANSWERED

If you missed our recent webinar on SquashLevels and want to better understand how our grading system has changed, you can watch the recording on demand here

What is the key difference between our old and new grading systems?

A key point to help understand the difference between our old and new grading system is we no longer have grading ‘points’ that are won or lost.

Each player has a ‘Level’ which is a ratio that measures your current playing form. SquashLevels adjusts your Level after each match based on the full game scores and how well you did against how you were expected to do against your opponent.

If you do much better than expected, you can move up a lot. Of course, that probably means your opponent did much worse than expected and can move down a lot too. If you both played as predicted, there would be little movement.

Free 3-month Gold SquashLevels Trial

A great place to learn how your level changes are calculated after each match is create your free account with SquashLevels and receive a 90-day free Gold trial. View your entire match history, result summaries, level change calculations and more. NZ players also receive 25% off an annual subscription.

racketball

WAIKATO RACKETBALL OPEN

The second running of the Waikato Racketball Open was held on Saturday 20 May at the Hamilton Squash & Tennis Club.

The tournament ran like clockwork - no surprises given that Andrea Rogers was the organiser! Some fabulous matches were played throughout the day in great spirits, with several golden point winners in the deciding sets. A fun day was had all round, and congratulations to all the players for their efforts.

Championship Winners / Runners Up

Women’s Div 1:

Winner - Shari Ball (BOP)

R / Up - Andrea Rogers (Waikato)

Men’s Div 1:

Winner - Colin Hattingh (Waikato)

R / Up - Cliff Nightingale (Waikato)

Men’s Div 2:

Winner - Rambo King (Waikato)

R / Up - Rob Pierce (Waikato)

NEW ZEALAND SQUASH CHAMPIONSHIPS 2024

FRIDAY 5TH - SUNDAY 7TH JULY

DEVOY SQUASH & FITNESS CENTRE, TAURANGA

• MEN’S AND WOMEN’S OPEN DIVISIONS ONLY - TOP 32 PLAYERS ENTERED AS AT 10 MAY

• ENTER VIA ISQUASH

• $50 ENTRY FEE

• ENTRIES CLOSE 10 MAY

• INFO: WWW.SQUASHNZ.CO.NZ

Some of our exciting upcoming national events!

Click on the posters to find out more >

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SQUASH NEW ZEALAND POIPĀTŪ AOTEAROA

National tournament calendar 2024

Event

Rochelle Hobbs Memorial Henderson PSA Open

NZ Doubles Championships

NZ Junior Open

Auckland Open PSA Challenger

Oceania Closed PSA

Mitchell Cup & Cousins Shield

Morrinsville PSA Challenger

National Graded Championships

Skillzea PSA Open

Trident Homes South Island Open PSA Challenger

NZ Squash Championships

South Island Junior Age Groups

North Island Junior Age Groups

NZ Seconday Schools Squash Nationals

Masters Club Team Championships

NZ Racketball Festival

NZ Inter-District Team Championships

G.J. Gardner Homes National Superchamps

B Grade Superchamps

C Grade Superchamps

D Grade Superchamps

E Grade Superchamps

F/J Grade Superchamps

G.J. Gardner Homes NZ Junior Age Group Championships

NZ Inter-District Junior Team Championships

G.J. Gardner Homes NZ Masters Championships

NZ Inter-District Masters Team Championships

Wellington

Morrinsville

Hutt

Hamilton Squash & Tennis Club

Methven Squash Club

Kawaroa Park Squash Club

Squash City Invercargill

North Shore Squash Club

North Shore Squash Club

Tawa & Manā Squash Clubs

Tawa & Manā Squash Clubs

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Waikato Midlands Central Southland Auckland Auckland Wellington
Club
Club
Club
Henderson Squash
Christchurch Squash
Club
Squash Gym Palmerston North North Shore Squash
Club
Club
Papakura Tennis & Squash
Hawkes Bay Squash Rackets
Squash Club
Squash Club
Squash Club
&
Fitness Centre
Henderson
Pirates
Richmond
Christchurch Football SC Devoy Squash &
Club
Otago Squash
Club
Taupō Squash
City Squash Club
Squash Club
Whanganui
Devoy Squash & Fitness Centre
Otago Squash Club
Whangarei Squash Club
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