Emma Keane was recently awarded the Bob Anderson Trophy for her commitment to the University of Surrey Squash Club during the past three years.
Keane told www.islandstats.com, “My squash has improved hugely since being at university, as a result of many things. I’ve had exposure to more players my level, more female players, and also the incredible coaching of Jesse Engelbrecht, who is a High Performance Coach and former South African #1. My Bermudian coaches set a great foundation for my squash, and Jesse has helped to add more creativity and play to my game, making it less calculated and more flowing. He’s also taught me a lot about the psychology behind squash, something I hadn’t really been exposed to before, and I really think that’s helped my mental game develop over the years.”
“Training in Paris was an incredible experience, and turned out to be exactly what my game needed at the time. French players are renown for their fluid and efficient movement, something that I was heavily lacking at the time. Luckily, I found David Quéré at Stade Français, the squash club closest to me in Boulogne-Billancourt, and he worked wonders on my movement. He invested a lot in me and set me up with a fitness program focused specifically on strengthening my legs and getting my movement better, and we did a lot of on court work to compliment this. I was also very lucky to be warmly welcomed by the rest of the club players and into the Ladies 1st team, so I was able to keep up a high level of play,” continued Keane
Keane concluded, “I’ve got a few dreams for the future that don’t include sport, but depending on how and if they work out, I will definitely be coming back to Bermuda to promote squash, especially among women. Like everywhere in the world, Bermuda still has a long way to go in terms of improving gender equality and the way women are valued in sport, but in a sport as small as squash and a place as small as Bermuda, this is only emphasized. As President of Team Surrey Squash, my one goal was to increase female participation, and through realizing this goal I saw the club members grow closer together and create a strong sense of community. That’s not to say that there isn’t already a sense of community at the BSRA, but there certainly isn’t an equal number of male and female members, and as a woman, you feel that. Rachel Barnes, Alex Furtado, Jane Chapman, and Denise Kyme all serve on the BSRA’s Board of Directors and are already fighting that good fight, and I would love to be able to join them and do my part upon my return to Bermuda. These are all ladies who inspired me when I was a young girl just learning how to play, and the fact that they are all still promoting female squash now is a testament to just how important this is.”