In just her freshman year, Camilla Tomlinson ’14 has proven to be one of the top squash players not only on the Yale women’s team but also in the nation.
Tomlinson is the second-highest ranked freshman in the nation at No. 10, behind only Trinity’s No. 8 Catalina Pelaez. She has not lost a single match this year, and has only dropped one game this season, which came against No. 3 Trinity. Alternating between the No. 1 and No. 3 ladder spots, she has helped the Bulldogs earn an undefeated 13–0 record thus far and continues to improve, according to teammates.
Captain Logan Greer ’11 said that Tomlinson has substantially improved since her first time hitting the court in the fall and has played an integral part of the team’s success.
“When she played in the Ivy Scrimmages this fall, she only hit rails making it easier for her opponent to stay in each rally,” Greer said. “But, six months later in her match against Princeton she moved her opponent everywhere by hitting drops, cross courts and boasts; in fact, she moved her opponent so much that she was exhausted after the first three rallies of the match.”
Tomlinson went on to win that match against Princeton’s Elizabeth Eyre in three straight sets.
Growing up in England, Tomlinson first started playing squash at the age of 10 and also played multiple other sports, including badminton, tennis and netball. In just a few years, she won the British Closed Under 13 squash tournament, her first major tournament victory. She still remembers the hard work that helped her earn that win.
“I had to wear a glove on my playing hand because of the amount of blisters that I had from training so much,” Tomlinson said.
She joked about how she previously trained as a junior by running around her garden with a tire to improve her endurance.
According to teammate Sarah Toomey ’11, Tomlinson has been one of the hardest-working players on the team and has helped the team win close matches.
Before coming to Yale, Tomlinson had never practiced and competed with a team. She said that now she particularly enjoys the bonds she has been able to forge with her teammates.
Tomlinson admitted how fond she immediately was of Greer’s dedication to the team and intensity at practice. She added that the environment that Greer and her teammates created has been ideal for her development as a player.
“All three seniors offer great support and motivation to the team,” Tomlinson said. “Logan is an amazing captain and we all feel very comfortable going to her with any problems.”
She admitted that winning individually is not as important to her as the team winning the overall match, a testament to her transition to playing as part of team. Aside from any personal goals, she emphasized the importance of this weekend’s match against Harvard for the Yale program.
“The Harvard women’s squash team is also undefeated so far, meaning everyone on the team will need to pull out a good performance if we are going to win next week,” she said.
The women’s squash team will face the Crimson this Saturday in Cambridge at 1 p.m.