Pilley plays new love game
Yamba squash star is bouncing off the walls with the excitement of first arrival
SQUASH: Cameron Pilley is sitting on a plane back to Denmark after his season-opening event in the US.
He wouldn’t normally make the trip back so soon after a tournament but now he has a very good reason to make the return trip.
Pilley and wife Line Hansen welcomed their first baby, Karla Hansen Pilley, into the world two and a half weeks ago, the top-20 ranked squash player said it had been a whirlwind few weeks leading into the season opening.
“Obviously coming into the weeks leading up to the birth we had to be ready to drop everything, but once we had the kid then it was really tough to manage the training with the buzz and the excitement of having the first kid,” he said.
“It was a pretty special moment being there and something I’ll always remember. Timing wise, I suppose before the season started is better than mid season.
“In saying that, I skipped two events – Shanghai and San Francisco – to make sure I was there for the birth but I wouldn’t have missed the birth for anything.”
And with any new baby comes changes to a routine, and the first thing Pilley said he was getting used to was a new sleep schedule.
“The first week was pretty brutal in the sleeping department.”
“Anyone with a kid would know it’s a lottery with how much sleep you’re gonna get in the early days, but thankfully my wife Line was also squash pro for more than 10 years. She knows how important sleep is in order to train well and play well, so I managed a few nights sleep in the spare room.”
And as for the return trips, Pilley said it was something he was definitely including in the year to spend more time with his new extended family.
“I think I’ll definitely try to get home more in between events now that we have the little one. In the past I may have stayed on at an event for a few days then just go straight onto the next one, but that will change.”
“I want to be there for mum and bub whenever I get a chance and having a child puts a whole new perspective on things.
“At the same time squash is still my job and I need to make sure that I train and perform at the highest level. I think it will be a balancing act for a while before we get into a rhythm with it all.”
Pilley was knocked out in the first round of his season opener, running into world number 2 Mohamed El Shorbagy, who Pilley said “shocked him” a little with his excellent early season form, but said he was confident his work in the off-season would pay dividends this year.
“I’ve been tweaking my training over the last few seasons and it seems to be paying dividends.”
“I’ve eliminated most of the impact training from my program and changed a few things in my game and movement on court, and the body has responded well to it.”
“The World Doubles win (last year) was a massive confidence boost for both me and Ryan (Cuskelly). We knew that if performed to our abilities, we would be hard to beat, and we did that. We’re looking forward to competing in Aussie soil at the Commonwealth Games.” But, as his plane flew back across the oceans to his home in Denmark, getting back to see his new baby was the only thing on his mind. “It feels awesome.” “It puts a different perspective on things and makes you realise what the important things in life are.”
BIG EVENT: Karla Hansen Pilley, first child for former Yamba squash player Cameron Pilley and wife Line Hansen.