A member of Abingdon Squash Club has won England Squash’s Rising Star (Female) award at the 2023 England Squash Awards.

Emily Coulcher-Porter, 16, has had an outstanding year, securing a place at the European Under 19 Championships and becoming both British and English champion in the girls under 17 category.

She came second at the under 19 Pontefract Gold held in December.

Herald Series: Emily Coulcher-Porter has started to compete at under 19 levelEmily Coulcher-Porter has started to compete at under 19 level (Image: England Squash)

Ms Coulcher-Porter said she "never even considered" she would be selected for the Rising Star award.

She said: "I saw people who have previously been selected and I always wanted to get that award because it’s recognition not just from coaches but from everyone watching squash.

"And to feel recognised for the hard work that I put in and to get a recognition award, I was really shocked, I was over the moon."

However, the young player's proudest achievement has been winning the British Junior Championships in October.

Ms Coulcher-Porter said: "I'd have to say winning the British Junior Championships in October because I‘ve got to the final so many times, but I could never deliver in the final.

Herald Series: Emily Coulcher-Porter with her British Junior Championship awardEmily Coulcher-Porter with her British Junior Championship award (Image: England Squash)

“It would always be really close and I'd always be the person that would lose it.

"It was my number one goal to win a British Championship title before I turn 19.

"I think to just get past that sort of bridge in my head and to win in the final, it was just the best, it was amazing."

Ms Coulcher-Porter's impressive performances earned her the chance to represent England at the European Championships in Romania.

She finished in 17th place, having entered as a 33/64 seed.

Speaking about the tournament, Ms Coulcher-Porter said: "I had a tough draw.

"I had the one seed in the second round, which was quite tough, and I didn't manage to beat her.

"But I had a really good match with her, and I managed to come 17th, which was the highest I could have come after losing my second round.

“So, I thought it went very well compared with the draw that I had. I was actually very happy with how I did.”

The young star is looking forward to the challenge of moving into the final junior under 19 age group and is aiming for a strong performance at the British Junior Open in January.

She hopes to go to university in the USA on a squash scholarship, but is undecided on whether she will pursue a professional career in the sport.

More information about the England Squash Awards can be found on the England Squash website.