Our San Francisco Store was lucky enough to have our world ranked squash technical partner, Camille Serme, visit this past week. Camille came to compete in one of America’s largest squash events, the Oracle Netsuite Open, over the weekend. She had a chance to have an open talk with fans about her game, and share why she uses Decathlon equipment as a key part of her strategy. Camille currently sits as the 5th highest ranked woman squash player in the world (top career ranking at World No. 2), and was named Women’s Player of the Year at the 2017/17 PSA Awards. She achieved all this with Artengo by Decathlon’s top of the line SR990 Racket.
We met with Camille on September 25th before the tournament, and she gave loyal fans in the U.S. the rare opportunity to speak with her in an intimate setting. Camille discussed Decathlon’s squash line (Artengo), her success story, and opened up for any questions about her technique and game. Camille first began playing tennis at a young age, then at the age of 7, she tried squash with her best friend. What she loves about squash is that it's a game that keeps you on your toes, thinking about where to put the ball next, studying your opponent, and constantly changing and adapting your game. To the professional squash player, Decathlon is like a family that supports you. Decathlon supports Camille by working with her directly to create a squash racket that is tailored to her competitive needs. Camille knows that in order to compete at the top levels of squash, she needs a racket that is extremely durable to withstand hits against the wall. The reason she loves the SR990 is because it provides this necessary feature. To this day she has not broken an Artengo racket, and we know she hits harder than most!
*Camille wears our Artengo Women's Light Tennis Tank, available here. She uses this bag to carry her rackets and gear.
Some key advice Camille gave us was to always #1, keep your eye on the ball, and watch it as carefully as possible. Try to take cues from opponents on what type of shot they will hit next by studying their position, formation, how high their racket is, before they even hit the ball. She gave some insider perspective on how to defeat different types of players as well. Often times, she believes it's less about your opponent's ranking, and more about understanding their game technique, whether they hit simple and well, or use certain trick or spin. For example, a trick she used at her tournament in China against aggressive players was to attack early. This technique worked well for her in that case, and in her round of 16 match at the Oracle Netsuite Open.
Side note: She's also a huge fan of our grips.
In this tournament, Camille started out strong with a tough match against American Amanda Sobhy, who was making a great come back from a serious injury, a torn Achilles. Amanda was a top ranked player before her injury, so it was clear that Camille was in for a tough match. However, Camille showed that she could hang tough and she defeated Sobhy 3 games to 1. Her next match-up against Annie Au from Hong Kong also proved to be an incredibly difficult opponent and she ended up eventually losing in a long 5 game match. Au later ended up losing to Sarah-Jane Perry from England, who went on to win the tournament.
We are excited to continue to follow Camille in her journey to Philadelphia to play in the U.S. Open of Squash. She was incredibly inspirational and insightful to talk with, and our Decathlon family hopes to see her go far!