Juniors shine at action packed Scottish National Championships

The talent of Scotland’s junior squash players was on display at the Scottish National Championships, which took place at the Edinburgh Sports Club over the weekend. Over 80 girls and boys from U11 to U19 competed over three days, with some fantastic squash throughout a highly competitive draw.

In the girls U11 draw, top seed Sophie Ballentyne from Glasgow took the title for the second year running, winning all her games enroute to the title. She beat Emma Little, Eilidh Young, Phoebe  MacDougall and second seed Jessica Craig-Gould. Sophie matched her form last year, winning all her matches and over 80% of the points in another dominant display.

Girls U11 standings. Full results here

  1. Sophie Ballentyne
  2. Emma Little
  3. Jessica Craig-Gould
  4. Eilidh Young
  5. Phoebe MacDougall

The number one seed Callum Smith won his play off against Ellis Isaacs to take the U-11 boys titles winning 3-0 and only dropping five games. Ellis had an equally strong run in Box 2, winning five matches and not dropping a game in the process.

Boys U11 standings. Full results here

  1. Callum Smith
  2. Ellis Isaacs
  3. Flynn Macdonald
  4. Lewis Lind
  5. Murray Lind
  6. Riley Smith
  7. Max Appleby
  8. Hamish Westgarth
  9. Magnus Tucker

Phoebe Hamilton topped her third-place finish last year by winning the girls U13 draw. Phoebe’s toughest game came in the 1/2 payoff against box 2 winner Rebecca Little,  with the highly competitive final finishing 11-8, 11-4, 11-7 in Phoebe’s favour. One of the games of the draw was Willow Henderson’s epic five game Box 1 victory against Katie Polworth, which finished 7-11, 11-5, 11-4, 7-11, 11-9.

Girls U13 standings. Full results here

  1. Phoebe Hamilton
  2. Rebecca Little
  3. Eunice Lok Hei LI
  4. Willow Henderson
  5. Emily Ballentyne
  6. Katie Polworth

The tournament continued to form with top seed Thomas Myers winning the U13 draw, beating Kamran Shamoo 11-2, 11-8, 11-5 in a hard-fought final. The main draw was littered with great performances, but the one to top them all was an entertaining round 1 clash between number 7 seed Mark Hammond and Fergus Macdonald. After narrowly losing the first game 10-12, Mark fought back in style, winning three of the final four games, 11-7, 11-5, 8-11, 11-6.

Boys U13 standings. Full results here

  1. Thomas Myers
  2. Kamran Shamoo
  3. Callum Smith
  4. Andrew Ross
  5. Daniel Baldwin
  6. Brodie Mcmaster
  7. Mark Hammond
  8. Benjamin Krop
  9. Vincent Li Fergus MacDonald

Ella Bannister won the Girls U15 draw for the second year running, winning all her games 3-0 on the way to the title. Alice Redding’s 11-3, 11-8, 7-11, 7-11, 9-11 victory against Isla Hamilton was the highlight of the draw. Number two seed Chi Pui Felicia Chan had a good run winning two of her four games. She beat Alice Reading 11-8, 13-11, 11-7 and Isla Hamilton 11-7, 11-2, 11-7 before a hard-fought loss against eventual winner Ella Bannister 11-3, 11-7, 11-5.

Girls U15 standings. Full results here

  1. Ella Bannister
  2. Chi Pui Felicia Chan
  3. Alice Redding
  4. Isla Hamilton

The number 1 seed John Green from Edinburgh had a dominant run to the boys U15 final, where he beat Murdo Mackenzie 11-6, 11-3, 7-11, 11-8. John held the T well throughout, forcing his opponent out of position and using some tight wall drives to great effect. The 3/4 playoff produced one of the games of the tournament, a gripping, see-saw match between eventual winner Cailean McAlpine and last year’s finalist Zack Paton, finishing 8-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-6, 7-11. Other games of note was number three seed Cailean McAlpine’s four game second round thriller against James Newman, which finished 11-13, 11-9, 11-9, 11-3.

Boys U15 standings Full results here

  1. John Green
  2. Murdo Mackenzie
  3. Cailean McAlpine
  4. Zack Paton
  5. James Newman
  6. Jamie Pearman
  7. Thomas Myers
  8. Thomas Polworth
  9. Joseph Barnby
  10. Blair MacKenzie
  11. Rohan Shamoo
  12. Kamran Shamoo
  13. David Hunter
  14. Alexander Buckley
  15. Fraser Westgarth

The number 1 seed Robyn McAlpine from Glasgow made it a National Championship double by beating Louisa Kaven 11-5, 11-4, 11-5 in the final of the Girls U17. Robyn played some accurate winners above the tin to put her opponent under pressure and used her short game sparingly to keep Louisa guessing. Louisa narrowly missed out again after a carbon copy final against Robyn in the 2022 championships. She beat the no.3 seed Florence Gibson 4-11, 6-11, 4-11 and Niamh Wilson 1-11, 1-11, 1-11 on her way to the final.

Girls U17 standings. Full results here

  1. Robyn McAlpine
  2. Louisa Kaven
  3. Florence Gibson
  4. Chi Pui Felicia Chan
  5. Lily Craig Gould
  6. Niamh Wilson
  7. Anna McGouldrick

The number 2 seed Sam Shannon beat Archie Niven in the final of the Boys U17. It was a first-class game that went right to the wire, with Sam eventually coming out top 12-10, 7-11, 11-8, 6-11, 8-11. On his way to the final, Sam overcame Harrison Goss-pastor 11-9, 5-11, 7-11, 6-11 and Murray Richmond 5-11, 2-11, 6-11. The draw was full of competitive match ups including Connor Murray’s epic 9-11, 11-6, 14-12, 9-11, 3-11 second round win against James Beaumont.

Boys U17 standings. Full results here

  1. Sam Shannon
  2. Archie Niven
  3. Harrison Goss-Pastor
  4. Connor Murray
  5. Murray Richmond
  6. Euan Bell
  7. Aran Gibson
  8. Alexander Dudley
  9. Murray Donald
  10. Thomas Kallestrup

Robyn McAlpine won the double by winning the Girls U19 draw, only dropping two games in the process. Rowan Niven put up stiff resistance along the way during a pulsating 11-6, 11-9, 7-11, 11-9 game that pushed Robyn all the way. Robyn also came through a hard fought four game match against Natalie Main which finished 11-6, 11-9, 7-11, 11-9.

Girls U19 standings. Full results here

  1. Robyn McAlpine
  2. Rowan Niven
  3. Anna Halliday
  4. Louisa Kaven
  5. Natalie Main

The final of the Boys U19 was a fitting end to a very successful Scottish Junior Championships. It was another high-class match between the number 2 seed Kyle Penman and his rival Rory Richmond, a repeat of the 2022 final and equally dramatic. It was a classic see-saw affair with Rory making a fast start winning the first two games 11-6, 11-7, before Kyle stormed back winning the final three games 5-11, 8-11, 12-14, sealing the title.

Boys U19 standings. Full results here

  1. Kyle Penman
  2. Rory Richmond
  3. Finlay Halton
  4. Oliver Hunter
  5. Anson Wong
  6. Dylan Pearman
  7. Aryan Sharma
  8. Rory Campbell