Podcast - Nick & Hedley Matthew, #NSHD2021
National Sporting Heritage Day takes place annually on 30 September. This year’s theme is ‘Inspire, Share and Celebrate’ and will focus on inter-generational activities and learning; using sporting heritage collections and stories to encourage conversations across generations and support young people to learn about the sporting pioneers that came before them.
To help launch this year’s activities we caught up with former World and Commonwealth squash champion Nick Matthew and his father, Hedley to discuss how prominent sport was in the Matthew family. Hedley was a semi-pro footballer, cricketer and PE teacher; and his father, Ronald, played rugby for Cardiff and Penarth RFCs.
Despite excelling in squash, Nick explains how he was encouraged to participate in a range of sports – including some that Hedley would make up! Indeed, it was only when Hedley took up squash after finishing playing football that the family was bitten by the squash bug; which provides for an interesting ‘sliding doors’ moment – what if Hedley hadn’t taken up squash but, say, bowls or badminton?
Nick talks about how his family not only nurtured his squash career practically and by accompanying him on tour, but also in keeping his feet firmly on the ground and never letting him get ahead of himself.
Now a coach of younger talent himself, Nick discusses how he takes an interest in the family of his young charges, and encourages an interest in the heritage of squash and and an appreciation of who has come before.
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Nick’s racket, kit and accessories, including his 2013 book ‘Sweating Blood: My Life in Squash’ are on sale at PDHSPORTS.com: www.pdhsports.com/s?q=nick+matthew
And there’s more information on #NSHD2021 and how you can get involved here: www.sportingheritage.org.uk/nshd