Friday, December 1, 2023

Cassie’s Corner: Four world champions roll back the years

I was the Pom outsider on the night of Aussie legends!

Four world champions, Michelle, Vicki, Rodney and Cassie
Four world champions, Michelle, Vicki, Rodney and Cassie

Squash has given me many things over the years. An opportunity to travel the world and experience different cultures. The feeling of achievement when I won and disappointment when I lost.

But something that I have always felt is special about the game is the people you meet along the way, and the friendships that are formed.

Last Wednesday night I was invited along to Tonic Squash and Gym in Dromana for a squash social night with a difference. On court and willing to take on anyone who fancied their chances were former World Champions Rodney Martin and his sister Michelle Martin.

It produced a great buzz around the club and I even ventured on court for a few games with Michelle, though I suffered for it the next day!

Once the squash had finished then the social part of the evening began. Sitting around with the red wine flowing as well as Michelle and Rodney was former top Aussie player and Rodney’s wife Amelia Martin (nee Pittock) .

Also there were her parents and owners of the club, Graeme and Pru Pittock, and another former world champion Vicki Cardwell with her husband Ian. I really was a Pom amongst the Aussie squash legends!

As the evening went on so did the stories of past matches and experiences on tour. Reminiscing about past players and where they are now, I was amazed at how Vicki remembers her quarter-final match in the 1984 British Open as if it was only yesterday!

I really could have stayed there all night and nearly did but knowing I have two kids that get up far too early in the mornings I said my goodbyes.

It was only when I was driving home that I thought how one common theme had brought us all together after all these years and that was the game of squash.

I spent half my career trying to beat Michelle and 15 years after we last played I was having a drink with her (driving so Sprite for me!) and catching up not necessarily about squash but about our kids and life in general.

Squash brings people together, people that you probably would never have met. Whether it being at club or international level friends are made and experiences are shared.

I will always be thankful to the game for the experiences I had, the people I have met and the friends I have made and last Wednesday night only endorsed that.

Pictures from social media 

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