Gold may be in Yamba water for squash pair
Posted on 04/25/20 7:43 PM
Donna Urquhart (left) is one of two Yamba cousins heading for the squash semi-finals at the GamesCameron Pilley reckons it’s got to do with the water.
But whatever it is, the tiny north-coast NSW town of Yamba will have the entire country drinking out of the palm of their hands should Pilley and cousin Donna Urquhart medal at the Commonwealth Games.
Not only will the pair advance to the medal rounds should they win their respective quarter-finals on Saturday, but there’s a fair chance their home town will throw a party for the ages.
“It’d be unbelievable if me and Donna could get through and you get two people from such a small town making it through to the semis, at least, of a Comm Games on home soil,” Pilley says.
“It’s a small town so we know a lot of the same people from back home. I’m sure if we got into medal contention, Yamba would probably have a party.”
To do so, world No.20 Pilley will have to defeat No.14 and fourth-seed James Willstrop from England.
In eerily similar circumstances, Urquhart, who outlasted compatriot Christine Nunn in a five-game match on Friday, will also have to beat an Englishwoman in fourth-seed Sarah-Jane Perry.
haven’t won a squash gold in three editions of the Games.
Both players have a large contingent of family and friends who have travelled the two hours from the town of around 6000 people – but they’re not the only supporters in the Oxenford Studios crowd.
Urquhart is set to marry Scotland star Greg Lobban, who lost his round of 16 match but has family in town for the nuptials at the end of the Games.
The wife of Denmark-based Pilley has also flown over.
“She’s Danish and her family have come out for the second week. No pressure but they’ve come all the way from Denmark to watch me,” he says.
While Pilley chuckles as he attempts to explain how two of ‘s best squash stars hail from Yamba, he isn’t kidding when it comes to the real reason for his skills.
His parents ran the squash club for 25 years.
“So that might have something to do with it,” he says.
“Growing up it was a town of 3000, but it was a pretty big squash community. My dad was coach and he brought up a lot of juniors that went on to play regional, state and international level.
“It was a good social club as well so when juniors came through, they have a lot of fun. They’ve got some competition, but made a lot of friends as well. When you’re a kid, that’s the biggest part.”