More Than Just A Ranking is a series where we get a personal insight into squash players about more than just who they are on court.
We speak with Welsh number one and World Number 9 Joel Makin about his career inspirations, and what he hopes to achieve during his squash career and beyond.
“At 16/17 I started to get to a level whereI had an understanding about tournaments ad about taking things more seriously as a professional. “
“My inspirations around that time, were the likes of the British guys such as Nick Mathew, James Willstrop who was obviously at the top at the time.”
I also liked those players like Pete Nicol, David Palmer, games that were physical.
“That was what excited me when I watched squash when I was young. I just wanted to see people moving at fast pace, being hard to beat, and it was the athleticism that drew me to the sport.”
He then speaks about coming back from medical time out and his rise back to the top of the sport.
“We had such a busy two years after the COVID stop. We had six months out and then every tournament so that we didn’t have an off season during that time. “
“I trained through and then towards the back end of that two year cycle, we had the Commonwealth Games. So that was without a doubt the hardest physical push ups I’ve had in my career.”
“I couldn’t have been in better shape going into that, and I’d got my set side six weeks going in and I worked really hard and then obviously that was a huge event.”
“Then the season started ten days later and I started struggling with I had a virus and couldn’t get rid of that.”
“Then starting back in January 2023, I was able to actually put in the sort of training work that I consider necessary to be at the top of the game. So I’m enjoying playing. I’ve been I like being able to move in the way I want to, and that enables my squash to come through in the way I want.”
Joel then speaks about his career hopes and his drive to be the best player he can be.
“I’m always aiming to be the world number, one world champion, Commonwealth Champion. I’ve trained hard for four years now and I’ve really dedicated a huge amount of a lot of my time over the years and there’s been a lot of sacrifices going into it.”
“At this point, I still, you know, I’ve achieved some things that I wanted to when I just started out and have been very happy with that.”
“But your goals keep going higher and higher and I want to see what I can do. I sort of I still think there’s a levels to my squash that I can go up and achieve a lot more than I have done already. I want to try and get to the top of the rankings.”
“The biggest thing for me is I just want to maximize what I’ve got and not thinking I could have given up a bit more or if I’d have sacrificed to try to work harder in this way, I could have done it. I want to leave no stone left unturned. “