Captain Chelsea Cho ’21, a member of the 2020 All-Nepsac First Team, enters this season with over seven years of squash experience. According to Saffron Agrawal ’21, Cho’s ability to connect with every teammate is admirable, and her initiative is unwavering.
“I admire Chelsea’s leadership, particularly during this difficult time being remote for the winter. Chelsea is committed to maintaining a team dynamic and is extremely considerate about the younger students who don’t know how fun a normal season is even though she doesn’t get to experience or lead one herself this year,” said Agrawal.
Why did you decide to start playing squash?
I started because my dad and sister played, and I grew up watching them play. I loved the speed of the sport, and that is why I wanted to try it.
What inspires you to play squash?
What really inspired me was the fact that squash is an individual sport, so the only person you can really depend on is yourself. I really love that aspect of the game.
What is your favorite thing about squash?
I love being part of the [Andover Girls Squash] team because we are all really close. My favorite part of Winter Term is getting to go to practice every day, see my teammates, and that we are all really supportive of each other outside the court too. That team bonding is something that I really love. In terms of squash in general, what I love is that there are so many different parts of squash that I can focus on. One is racket technique or the mental game. I feel like I never get bored of that because there are so many things that I try to improve every time I play.
How are you a role model for the squash team?
I try to be a role model through my actions, especially when I am playing on the court. How our squash matches work is that after each of our matches we go to watch each other’s matches and cheer our teammates on. I usually play last so I try to be a good role model by not giving up even when I am losing and not getting too ahead of myself even when I am winning. I also try to stay really positive mentally. Some of the lessons that I think are really important are the team aspect of the court and cheering for each other because in games we also coach each other. I think that is important in not only improving your game by watching someone else’s, but also being there for your teammate and never losing your focus even if you are losing.
What is the most important thing you have learned from playing squash?
There are a lot of things that I have learned from playing squash, but I think one of the most important things is that as long as I tell myself that I can do it on the court—even if there is a lot of pressure or I am losing by a lot—if I tell myself that it is just another game, another point, I just focus on what I can control. I find that helpful in staying consistent and not giving up throughout my matches.
What is your favorite moment from a squash game?
One of my favorite moments from Andover Squash throughout my four years here was actually High School Nationals last year. High School Nationals is a tournament we play at the end of every season, and the whole team stays together so it is a really nice opportunity for team bonding as well. One of the matches I played last year at the tournament was really close, and I loved having my teammates there to support me, and I depended on them a lot. I really loved that even though it was really close and I was playing against a hard opponent, I could depend on my teammates and my coaches and get through it.