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Home > Squash Tips > Temperament


If you analyse the temperaments of squash players or ball game players in general, you may place them into three classes:

1. Good losers
2. Moderate losers
3. Bad losers

The first is the ideal class we all want to belong to. The second is not good enough.

Self control, or lack of it, is at the bottom of everyone's mannerisms or temperament. To some people losing a game is as easy as winning, but this is not the usual. In most people the desire to win is natural. Disappointment in some, bad temper in others, spoils their otherwise pleasant natures when they lose.

My advice to all youngsters is this. Always play hard to win - but if you do, don't be too pleased. Remember your opponent's feelings; he tried hard, but unavailingly, to win. Realise how you would feel in the same circumstances. Let him know that you played as well as you could play. Remark approvingly on the games he won, give him his due - both of you couldn't win.

If you lose, say and feel you were beaten by a better man. If you have given of your best you have the satisfaction that your opponent knew and appreciated it. Tell your opponent that though he has won this time, you would like to tackle him again - show keenness.

There are certain things which happen unexpectedly in a game and are apt to upset us, and in consequence our play suffers:

  • A doubtful decision by a marker or inadvertently by your opponent - forget it.

  • A racket, string or shoe string breaking - bad luck but could you have foreseen it? If so, your own fault.

  • A fall on the court, or a hit on the head or ear - dont worry, just grin. You probably looked rather amusing from the spectators' point of view.

  • Spectators' remarks, or noises - they are there to see you play squash, show them how it should be played.

  • Last but most important of all, any action of your opponent must be looked at from a generous point of view. You're in court for his pleasure as well as your own and he is more important than the spectators or yourself.

The crowd is generally willing to support the weaker player or the loser, so be a credit to their sportsmanship. It's so easy to win happily, learn to lose the same way.

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