Holly Newall: I am grateful
Date: 9/10/2020 8:47 AM
Published by : Emilie Sommer (BEC)

Holly Newall, the Scottish National Champion in women’s singles for 2020 and European Women Team’s bronze medallist, has been practising at the Centre of Excellence the last few months. 

For the last couple of months, Newall has been practising and living at the CoE in Holbæk, Denmark as there were no training opportunities in Scotland during the pandemic. 

- I decided to come to the CoE because during the global pandemic, there were no opportunities to train in Scotland with all leisure centres being closed. When Badminton Europe offered me the scholarship I accepted straight away. For me, the scholarship came at the perfect time, as it gave me inspiration to get back into a full-time training regime after not training for four months. I have always wanted to try the CoE as I have a close friend who has been living there for the last three years and she has always spoken highly of it, Newall says. 

Read: Coaches back on court

A warm welcome

Talking to Newall how it has been to be practising at the CoE for the last months, she says. 

- I have really enjoyed practising at the CoE due to many reasons. There are many players to spar with from different countries, this allows me to work with new styles and techniques. There are three coaches, Jeroen Van Dijk, Peter Jensen and John Dinesen who all have a lot of knowledge in different aspects of the game. The training has been good as I have learned many new things including exercises I have not done before in Scotland. The programme is always changing which I like because then it does not get too repetitive. Other than the training I am also enjoying the benefits of free access to the gym, swimming pool, sauna and physio as they help me recover for the sessions. 

- Everyone at the CoE gave me a warm welcome when I arrived, they have all been so nice to me, helped me when I have been struggling in practice and even more so when I have been attempting to cook, as everyone here has learnt that I cannot cook! I have made some great friends for life here and I am grateful to every single one of them, she continues. 

Read: Join the Athletes' Commission

Grateful for the opportunity

Newall will stay at the CoE for a further couple of months before heading back to Scotland. But even though she is heading back to Scotland, she will never forget her time at the CoE. 

- I have decided to extend my stay for a further two months at the CoE because of the positive experience of the scholarship. I am planning on heading back to Scotland mid-October because Badminton Scotland has just signed a new singles coach, Alan McIlvain who is scheduled to start his new role in October. I think this was a good move from Badminton Scotland and I am looking forward to a positive relationship with Alan over the next few years. 

- Finally, I would like to thank Badminton Europe for this experience which I am very grateful for and I will make the most of my remaining time here. 

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