Pontefract Squash Club’s Sam Todd, the exceptional Ackworth School pupil, completed a remarkable week when he won the Queen’s Halifax Under 15 Open.
Prior to that, coming in as a late replacement for Pontefract’s third team, he won 11-9 in the fifth against Huddersfield’s first team to win his team the match 3-2 .
Then playing at second string for Pontefract’s fourth team he beat Tony Kaye of Wakefield second team 15-13 in the fifth, after a mammoth encounter, as his team won 4-1.
Straight to Halifax, the next morning he won three matches to reach the final.
There he played Oscar Beech (Lancashire), nationally ranked under 15, a player he had never beaten before.
Going the full distance again Todd won 12-10 in the deciding game, having been 6-1 down.
Not only has he got unusual racket ability, Todd is showing outstanding physical and mental durability at the age of 11.
His main immediate aim is the British Under 13 Championship in Manchester at the end of the month, with his longer term objective the British Junior Under 13 Open in Sheffield in Januarywhich has world status.
Todd is showing a similar level of ability to Lee Beachill and James Willstrop, Pontefract’s two former world number ones, and his future looks assured.
Another very talented Pontefract junior Ellen Cooper won the Queen’s Under 17 Girls Championship, beating Jane Barker 3-1 in the final.
She has already represented England at under 15 level and her international career looks certain to continue.
Pontefract’s two Yorkshire Premier League sides have been finding life hard and the first team lost 4-1 to Queen’s Halifax while the second team were beaten 4-1 by Abbeydale Park Sheffield.
Lee Beachill made a rare appearance, winning for the first team, and Taminder Gata-Aura for the second team.
It was left to Todd’s fourth team to beat Wakefield 4-1, Pranay Jain, Todd, another Ackworth School pupil Harry Anderson and Rob Waller all winning competitive matches.
The first team play Hallamshire at home this week and will be strengthened by the inclusion of Australian Courtney West.
Pontefract’s James Willstrop, after winning the China Open in Shanghai, has moved up a place to six in the latest world rankings .