Barbados squash queen Meagan Best has taken her career one step further.
Best who created history by becoming the youngest ever squash champion at the 24th Caribbean Senior Squash Championship held at the Queen’s Park Squash Complex in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, at just 14 years and 4 months last year, is now under the tutelage of renowned coach Amir Wagih of Egypt.
Wagih, a former Egyptian squash player whose highest ranking was number 16 in the world, is the current coach of Squash on Fire based in Washington, United States, where Best spent eight days under his care focusing a lot on racket work in order to be more consistent especially when it comes to playing shots.
“As you progress in the sport it is all about who plays the better shot, who is more consistent and steadier so he tried to get me more consistent and more confident and it helps me to think the game a lot better,” she said of her international coach who has acquired 23 world titles with Egyptian and Arab world champions.
Best, the reigning Under-15 champion at the Junior Caribbean Area Squash Championship, left the island today for Guyana where she will lead Barbados’ hopes of defending the girls’ title. The team is captained by Amanda Haywood.
The St Michael School student who is also the national women’s champion just turned 15 years of age and has remained undisputed since representing Barbados in 2013. She won the Under-13 title in 2013 and 2014 and such was the case in 2015 and 2016 in the Under-15 age group and is now in search of her fifth overall title in what will be her first year competing in the Under-17 category. Best made it clear she does not intend to underestimate any of her opponents.
“I feel ready. I am very confident but at the same time, I will not be underestimating anyone. I feel good and I will go out there and play my game and do what I have to.
“As we go up in division everyone gets fitter, faster and it’s more about who knows the game better and who is more focused. But everyone has about the same racket skills, so it comes down to who wants it more. I focus a lot on cardio, fitness is a definite because I need to get a lot fitter which is something I have been working on and I have really seen the progress.
“So I am really happy with how everything is coming along,” she said.
After putting in the requisite training with Wagih and working on her overall fitness, Best explained she was ready for a year filled with competitive squash action before returning to Washington for more training in December.
On her agenda will be to defend both her titles at the senior CASA scheduled for August in St Vincent and the Canadian Open in the Under-15 Division, followed by the United States and United Kingdom Opens respectively.