Squash coach finds 'future champions'

DEBENHAM Squash Club coach Dennis Morley believes he found a number of future champions after a successful project to introduce more children to the game.

DEBENHAM Squash Club coach Dennis Morley believes he found a number of future champions after a successful project to introduce more children to the game.

The club, situated in-between Stowmarket and Framlingham, became one of the smallest in the country to be awarded the England Squash Bronze Charter Award recently thanks to its efforts to raise junior participation.

One initiative that has proved particular successful in earning the interest of youngsters has been the introduction of 'mini-squash', an adapted version of the game with bouncier balls and larger racket-heads.

Morley said: “I have been working with the Debenham High School to get the kids on court and take coaching sessions after school. I keep bashing away at it - I'm a one-man band.


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“It has become so popular that we have had to close registration - there just aren't enough days in the week.

“You get a kid on court young enough and it's amazing, they learn so quickly. We are going to have some future champions here. Some of the kids who start young have the potential to be national champions.

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“Depending on what your club does for squash, you get more points towards charters. We have just got the Bronze Charter, but there are a lot of big clubs in England that do not have any sort of charter, and we are not far from silver.”

Morley has been coaching in Debenham for the last six years, but began taking it more seriously three years ago. There are now 30 children aged between six and 16 training every week at the Debenham Squash Club.

He also coaches 40 more children in Bury, as well as the county squads, and is planning to take qualifications in Racketball to supplement his elite level three qualification in coaching squash.

Racketball, which uses bigger and bouncier balls and larger rackets with shorter handles, is a fast-growing sport in Britain, seen as an easier alternative to squash.

Clubs that have introduced racketball classes have had hundreds of people attending and England Squash has recently redesigned its logo to include racketball.

But with squash being lined up as a potential addition to the Olympic roster in 2016, Morley says he hopes squash's popularity will rise just as quickly.

He said: “Racketball is coming, it will be big. But England Squash are also putting a massive effort into squash. Their support is superb.

“The other thing that is helping now is that you can watch good squash online. So I think squash will become a lot more popular, because it is easier to watch.”

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