Squash is a sport played with a racket and ball where two players or four (in the case of doubles) alternate in striking the ball on to the four walls. The objective while playing squash is to ensure that you hit the ball in such a way that your opponent is unable to make a valid return shot.
Barbados TODAY will feature some of Barbados’ outstanding squash players over the next few weeks. In today’s edition is senior national squash player Lilianna White.
Name: Lilianna White
What is your occupation?
Business owner and Squash coach.
At what age did you start to play squash?
I have been playing squash since I could walk as my parents played but started properly about the age of 9 years old and competition at about 11 and have not looked back since so that puts me at 31 years of playing squash. Started playing for Barbados since 1993 and represented our wonderful island ever year up until 2012 which would have been my 20th year consecutively. Unfortunately, due to the death of my father, I took 3 years off as he was one of my squash mentors and it became difficult to even go to the club. I started back slowly in 2015 and became a World Squash Federation level 1 coach in 2016 and then upgraded to level 2 in 2017.
What or who inspired you to play squash?
Natalie Small and Philip ‘Flip’ Seale (my father) were my inspirators.
How many days a week do you normally spend training?
I train at least 5 days per week plus cross-training at IslandFit Barbados.
Who is your coach? Where do you often train?
My coaches have changed through the years. During my junior years Richard Walcott, as I moved into senior squash, I changed to Karen Meakins who is my main and current coach and I also train with Shawn Simpson. I train at the Barbados Squash Club.
Have you had the privilege of representing Barbados at any regional or international tournaments?
I was National Junior Champion and Caribbean Junior Champion for multiple years through my junior career and was within the top ten during my earlier senior years and gained my highest ranking in the Caribbean – 4th place. Outside of representing the Caribbean at the junior and senior level, I have also represented the Caribbean at the Junior North American Championships, Senior Pan Am Games and CAC Games through my career. 2010 Ladies team bronze medalist at CAC Games. Mixed doubles bronze medalist at the Pan Am Games.
Are you right or left-handed?
I am a right-handed player.
What is your favourite shot?
My favourite shot, well this is tough as I have quite a few but I have always been known as the dropper. So, I would say the drop shot whether a volley drop, drop from the back or front.
Who is your favourite squash player?
My favourite player to watch would be Australian Sarah Fitz-Gerald (world champion 1996 -1998; 2001 & 2002).
Are there any goals you have in mind that you would like to accomplish in the sport?
My goal is to bring home a medal at the World Masters level, which was postponed until next year.
Besides squash are there any other sports that you play? If not, do you have any hobbies which you care to share?
Growing up I did every sport at my school (St. Winifred’s School) and played on many sports teams, netball and volleyball to name a few. I was one of the first women to surf for Barbados. I was a national champion and represented Barbados on two occasions.
What do you see as your greatest accomplishment?
My greatest accomplishment with squash would be that I represented our beautiful rock for 20 years consecutively at a high level throughout the Caribbean.
What are your plans for your game of squash in the future?
My plans for squash are to continue to share my knowledge of the sport with all Barbadians and continue to train and continue to fulfil the enjoyment the sport gives me.
What would you say to a child or adult to encourage them to choose squash as a sport?
Squash has given me so much over the years. Fulfilment of my competitive personality, discipline, honour of flying our beautiful flag across the world, learning different cultures, friends all over the world and fitness. I would encourage every Barbadian of any age to learn about our sport and experience the feeling of enjoyment it can give.