After a strong debut at the World Teams Championship in December, Alasdair Prott is eyeing a third consecutive Under 23 National Championship win at Scottish Squash Rackets Club this weekend.
The 22 year old will make his final appearance in the competition, and will look to sign out with a win in what promises to be a big year for the young Scot.
Alasdair said: “I’m definitely aiming to retain the title again this year, but there are some really good young players in the draw so it’s definitely going to be a challenge.
“This is a great competition because it gives the juniors coming up an opportunity to challenge themselves against slightly older players who have been playing full time.”
Currently ranked world number 125, Alasdair reached a high of 107 last year, and is setting his ambitions higher in 2024.
He said: “Top 100 is definitely still an ambition of mine and hopefully it’s on the cards this year.
“I was getting close but then some other people had some good results and that pushed me down a bit further, so I’m looking to go a few better this year.”
The squash ace is no stranger to SSRC – the club he represents in the West of Scotland multi-club league.
As he looks forward to playing at a club he holds in high regard, Alasdair said: “The club is going from strength to strength, and it was great to see them winning club of the year a couple of years ago.
“Everyone’s buzzing to get on court and I’m sure there will be a great atmosphere at the club this weekend.”
In the women’s draw, 17-year-old Robyn McAlpine is eyeing her second consecutive victory with a weekend of top matches on the cards.
The Western squash star will look to maintain the form which carried her to the Scottish Junior Open 2023 U19 final in December.
Having become the first player to clinch the U17, U19 and U23 national titles in the same season last year, she has set the bar high and will aim to start the year with a win.
The talking points
For the first time ever, PSA points will be up for grabs in this competition, which could provide a helpful boost to Scotland’s young players.
Alasdair Prott secured the title as second seed for the first time in 2020, in the same year that Georgia Adderley won the women’s championship.
In 2020 and 2023 the Men’s final was contested by Alasdair Prott and John Meehan. With both players set to compete again this year, the third running of that final could be on the cards.
In the Women’s draw, four players will make their first appearance in the competition. Beth Moglia, Ella Bannister, Florence Gibson and Lucy Murchie will look to enjoy their first appearance in the competition.
Following a fantastic run to the last 16 of the British Junior Open, 14 year old Murdo Mackenzie will play in the event for the first time.
Follow the action
The Championship will take place on Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd January, with free entry for spectators.
Keep up to date with the schedule and results for the event on SportyHQ.