Shropshire Star

Pritchard is aiming to lead by example

An experienced Shropshire squash player is hoping to captain her country to victory at the Home Internationals later this month.


Linda Pritchard, from Shrewsbury, will lead her team to Dublin on April 26 and 27 to represent England in a masters squash competition against Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

Pritchard has been nominated to the captain of the women's over-50s team by her six team-mates.

She has previous experience playing in masters tournaments after featuring in the over-45 age bracket when the competition was held in Nottingham in 2018 and in Edinburgh in 2019, but this is her first time captaining the team.

And she says representing her country and leading the team in the Emerald Isle will be a proud moment for her.

"We got the tracksuit which has England on the back and it also has your name on the back, which is quite a proud moment and sometimes I feel embarrassed by it almost," she said.

"I am also proud to wear it, but I can also feel as if I don't deserve to wear it, but obviously I do for all the hard effort and training.

"When we are all wearing our tracksuits together that is of course a very nice moment."

Pritchard is originally from Cheshire, but she moved to Shropshire in 1995 and has been in the county ever since.

She plays squash three to four times a week and has been competing throughout the year to earn the points she needed to get selected for the event.

And while she admits she won't be the best player of the six in the team, she says it is an 'honour' to be picked as captain by her team-mates.

"I coach as well and I am a level two coach, so I am used to speaking," she added. "Obviously with the girls that I am playing with some of them are better than me.

"It is a proud moment, and it is an honour and some of these girls have sort of picked me for my captaincy and the way I try and help to give people advice when they are playing matches.

"So they have kind of picked me for that. I am not the best player there I am probably third out of the six so the fact they have picked me to captain it is quite an honour, to be honest."

Pritchard plays squash at Shrewsbury School and explained what her duties are going to be as captain of the team when they head to Dublin.

She said: "There is a lot of organising involved, and I need to make sure everyone has the kit they need as we have got to order it all beforehand, as well as organising flights and transport and so on.

"I will also have to organise the team because there are six of us only five will play. So it will be picking the team and trying to match them with the other players and during the match again it is giving advice and support when they come off in between games.

"I will try and tell them what they are doing well or not well during the games. There are other responsibilities too like a meeting with the other captains to organise the fixtures.

"I am looking forward to it, I am a little bit nervous, but I am very much looking forward to heading out there."