Fresh from the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, where she helped showcase her sport on the world stage as a squash ambassador, Georgia Adderley is looking to the future, which she hopes will include Commonwealth Games glory and, perhaps, another chance to participate at Olympic level.
“Buenos Aires was an incredible experience,” she says. “This has been huge for the sport, to have the chance to prove why it should be in the Olympics and the way it has changed and developed over the past few years to help it become a better spectator sport. I was asked to go and I didn’t think twice about it. The glass court had an interactive front wall and was very vibrant and I played lots of different people in a non-competitive environment. I really enjoyed being able to watch some of the sports taking part in the Olympics and to see lots of other athletes perform. I also saw some of the city and experienced the culture of South America, which was a fantastic new experience.”
With Squash included in Buenos Aires as a demonstration event, she hopes it will help pave the way to inclusion in future Games.
“I really hope Squash will be in the next Olympics as it is an incredibly unique sport like no other. It has everything and is exciting to watch and play and can be played at any age or stage. It has every right to be there and I hope 2024 will be the year!”
As well as her Youth Olympics experience, winning European Junior Championships bronze, Scottish Senior and British Junior Championships gold and British Junior Open bronze are just some of the highlights that Georgia has crammed into the last 12 months. On the back of her impressive string of results and passion for developing her sport, she was recently named as one of 18 young Scottish athletes awarded a PHM Scholarship Award by the Scottish Commonwealth Games Youth Trust for 2019, as she prepares to make the transition from junior to senior ranks.
“This support means so much to me,” she says. “I will be using the money towards my travel and accommodation at the events I plan on playing to help improve me as a squash player and develop as an elite athlete.
“To be among some great athletes who have had it, both in the past and currently, means so much to me. To know that other people are behind me and to have this support is really encouraging to me. This is going to help me to be the best athlete I can be, both on court and off court, and ensure I am prepared for every match I play.”
While in receipt of support like this herself, Georgia is already paying it forward through her involvement in Scottish Women in Sport’s ‘Girls Do Squash’ campaign, which aims to encourage girls and women into sport.
“This is something I am really passionate about and want to see grow and develop,” says Georgia. “I think sport is so important and keeps you healthy in so many different ways – it helps you to meet new people, stay mentally healthy and keep fit to mention just a few. Not enough people play, especially girls, and I really am excited to see this change, however long that takes! Sport has played such a huge role in my life and I love sharing that. It’s something I want to continue to work at and help grow this part of our sport culture.”
Next up is another busy year for the 17 year old, with the British Junior Championships later this month, both individual and team European U19 Championships in April and World Junior Championships in July high on the agenda. The ultimate goal is to become the best in the world and to win Commonwealth Games gold. With her drive and determination, she’s on the right track.