Junior Sportswoman of the Year award for Lydia

Lydia Robinson at Pocklington School, holding her framed Hull Daily Mail awardTalented squash player Lydia Robinson has been named as one the region’s best sporting talents in the prestigious Hull Daily Mail Sporting Champions Awards.  

The Upper Sixth Former has reached number 1 in every age group of the England Squash rankings, twice won the English Junior Championships and once been runner up in her age group.

She was declared winner of the Sporting Champions Awards’ Junior Sportswoman (16-18) category at a recent ceremony in Hull, and presented with a framed version of a recent Hull Daily Mail article about her success.

Lydia, 17, said: “I wasn’t expecting to win so when my name was announced I was just amazed! But it’s nice to be recognised.”

Fellow Upper Sixth Former Bella Byass was also shortlisted for the same award in the annual ceremony, whose former winners include Old Pocklingtonian and former top-ranked male British tennis player Kyle Edmund.

Bella is the school’s 1st XI hockey captain and has represented England Whites as part of the England Hockey Diploma in Sporting Excellence Programme. Last year she was named as England Whites’ most improved player.

Pocklington School Director of Sport David Byas said: “Both Lydia and Bella are wonderful ambassadors of the school and for them both to reach the shortlisted group is testament to what they have achieved in their respective areas.

“We are all very proud of their successes and this is wonderful recognition for the hard work and commitment that they have both demonstrated.”

This year promises to be a demanding one for both students as they juggle their A Level and BTEC studies with their sporting commitments.

Lydia, who plays with the Beverley Squash and Racketball Club, is working hard on her BTEC Sport and A level Psychology courses as well as focusing on moving up the tough U19 England Squash rankings.

She said: “I’m training harder than ever now because although I compete in less tournaments, the ones I do enter are larger and at a national level rather than regional. I’ve had to significantly improve my time management in order to balance sport with study because the tournaments are usually a distance away and on a Sunday. I get home late on a Sunday night and then I’m back at school on Monday.”

Lydia plans to take a gap year next year in order to apply for a professional ranking and then compete in Professional Squash Association tournaments.

“After that I’d like to go to university - either at a US college offering squash as a varsity sport so I can take part in tournaments alongside my studies, or in the UK.  I just need to get through my exams and see where next year takes me!” she added.