ZIMBABWE’s young squash sensation Ryan Gwidzima was on a roll once again after he won the England Squash North West Junior Under-13 boys Championships at the National Squash Centre in Manchester, England, at the weekend.
BY FORTUNE MBELE
Playing for his school, Wycliffe College, Gwidzima (12) beat the tournament’s first seed, England’s Bailey Malik 3-1 in the final on Sunday to clinch his first major title.
The tournament was his first major competition in England, the country he migrated to in August and where he is now studying.
Former England Squash Young Coach of the Year and Professional Squash Association World Tour player, Josh Taylor, who is also England Squash National Performance coach, confirmed Gwidzima’s victory, together with that of the girls category winner Charlie McCrone.
“Congratulations to Charlie McCrone and Ryan Gwidzima on being crowned Under-13 champions at the England Squash North West Junior Championships, Manchester,” Taylor said.
Last month, Gwidzima finished ninth in the Under-13 boys Karakal Welsh Junior Open tournament at Cardiff Squash and Rackets Club in Wales.
In Wales, Gwidzima lost 11-3, 11-2, 11-1 (3-0) to the eventual winner, Abdallah Eissa of England.
Gwidzima started playing squash at Suburbs Squash Club in Bulawayo, where he was coached by his father Langton.
He started representing Zimbabwe Junior Squash at eight years old when he played for the Under-13 team in South Africa, and he is currently the number one seed at Under-16 level.
Before he left for England, he was crowned the African Junior Open Under-15 champion in Cape Town last month.
In December last year, when he was just 11, Gwidzima capped a brilliant performance in the Under-13 age group, coming out position 17 in a draw of 124 players in the US Junior Championships.
The Ryan Gwidzima Trust facilitated his move to Wycliffe College, one of the best squash schools in England.
The trust is chaired by Bulawayo lawyer Promise Ncube and comprises former Education and Sports minister David Coltart, Michael Harvey and Trevor Williams.