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With a wealth of experience at both the intercollegiate and international levels, Sean Wilkinson was named the head coach of the Princeton men's squash team prior to the 2013-14 season.
Wilkinson, who most recently served as assistant coach at Drexel University, took over for US Squash Hall of Famer Bob Callahan ’77, who had retired following the 2013 season.
Wilkinson's first season offered challenges due to both graduation and injury, but the Tigers persevered to an 8-7 record and the Hoehn Cup title at the team national championships. Princeton had three All-Americas, including first-team honoree Samuel Kang and junior Tyler Osborne, who overcame numerous injuries during his season.
While the team did not win as many matches as it hoped, it showed the character Wilkinson expected when he took the job. The Tigers won the 2014 Sloane Award for Team Sportsmanship following the CSA Team Championships.
Wilkinson, a graduate of Bates College and native of Zimbabwe, served as assistant coach at both Bates and Brown University before being appointed as the first assistant coach at Drexel.
“I am honored to have been offered the head coaching position at Princeton,” Wilkinson said. “Bob Callahan, [assistant coach] Neil Pomphrey and all the Princeton players have created something very special here, and I am humbled to have been chosen to continue that legacy.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to work with some of the brightest and best squash players in the country, and I'm looking forward to playing an important role in their lives,” Wilkinson added. “We have a wonderful group of returning players, and I can't wait to get to know them and to start preparing for next season.”
Beyond his time coaching at the collegiate level, Wilkinson’s experience includes a two-year term as the head coach at the PoliSquash Sports and Fitness Club in Milano, Italy. Selected as a PeterNicolSquash endorsed coach, Wilkinson held 50 sessions a week for individual and group squash players.
In addition to running these sessions, Wilkinson headed the junior squash program, recruiting new players and organizing their lessons. He also managed a league of over 150 players and put together club tournaments, including the annual 5Nationals International Tournament with 64 competitors.
Working closely with former world number one player Peter Nicol, he has also coached at the Nicol Champions Academy for the past three summers and the Squash and Beyond program at Williams College during the summers of 2008 and 2009.
A 2008 graduate of Bates College, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, Wilkinson captained the Bates team which captured the Hoehn Cup in 2008. He was a New England Small College Association first team selection, and earned the Bates College Sportsmanship Award.
“Sean is going to be a terrific leader for this team,” Callahan said. “He is poised, personable, and a very good coach. I believe he is going to have great success here at Princeton over a hopefully long career.”