Squash coach a hit with judges

Cynon Valley - - FRONT PAGE -

STAFF at a leisure cen­tre in Aber­dare are cel­e­brat­ing the suc­cess of one of their col­leagues, who has been recog­nised na­tion­ally for his work on the squash courts.

STAFF at the So­bell Leisure Cen­tre in Aber­dare are cel­e­brat­ing the suc­cess of one of their col­leagues, who has been recog­nised na­tion­ally for his work on the squash courts.

Robert Gould, who trains play­ers of all ages, was named Coach of the Year at the an­nual Squash Wales Awards, held at the An­gel Ho­tel in Cardiff.

Hir­waun Squash Club was also named Club of the Year.

Robert has been coach­ing the ju­nior squash club at So­bell Leisure Cen­tre every Satur­day for more than 15 years.

Many of his young club mem­bers have gone on to rep­re­sent Wales, in­clud­ing Joel Makin, of Aber­dare, who is now ranked num­ber 38 in the world and num­ber one in Wales.

Other Welsh in­ter­na­tion­als in­clude his son Joel, Olivia and Louis Stephens, Alyx Kelle­her, Kieran Hill­man, Ciara Richards, Liam Ea­son, Aran Jack and Anna Ed­wards.

With his cur­rent ju­nior squash class run­ning at So­bell Leisure Cen­tre every Satur­day from 9.30am un­til 1pm, Rob still nur­tures young tal­ent and teaches them the ba­sics of the sport.

Coun­cil­lor Ann Crim­mings, cab­i­net mem­ber for en­vi­ron­ment, leisure and her­itage ser­vices, said: “We all send our sin­cere con­grat­u­la­tions to Robert, who is a ded­i­cated and highly re­spected squash coach. We are de­lighted that all his hard work has been recog­nised in this way.

“Squash is a very pop­u­lar sport at our leisure cen­tres across the county bor­ough and it is peo­ple like Rob who are the cat­a­lyst of the suc­cess.

“More and more peo­ple than ever be­fore are us­ing our leisure fa­cil­i­ties across the county bor­ough through our Leisure for Life ini­tia­tive, with cus­tomers recog­nis­ing the first-class fa­cil­i­ties we of­fer.”

Re­cent in­vest­ment at So­bell Leisure Cen­tre in­cludes the new £3m out­door track and field ath­let­ics fa­cil­ity, with a new 263-seater spec­ta­tor stand and state-of-the-art chang­ing rooms, which is due to open to the pub­lic this au­tumn.

Robert Gould, who runs the ju­nior squash class at the So­bell Leisure Cen­tre, Aber­dare, was named Coach of the Year at the an­nual Squash Wales Awards

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