Q&A: Rishi Tandon
Courtesy: Columbia University Athletics

What’s the best part about playing squash?

"Squash is a fast and exciting sport. Getting on the court is probably the best part of my day. Its a great feeling to be a part of a team and train to achieve something. Balancing squash with academics has made me more disciplined."

You are coming off a very competitive weekend in which Columbia competed in four matches in three days. The team impressively went 3-1 overall, what was the main thing that got you all successfully through that weekend?

"I think we did really well this past weekend, playing four matches was not easy. We performed well as a team to win three out of the four games and we have been training hard and motivating each other. Our coaches Jacques and Joanne have been a great support. The Cayman Islands training trip earlier this month helped us get ready for our matches."

You individually went unbeaten through the four-game stretch and have managed a 7-1 record overall this season. What has been the key for this season?

"I am happy I got a few wins for the team this past weekend . We have been training hard and pushing ourselves. The pre-season fitness sessions helped me get fit and faster on court. I go into every match with a fresh start trying to do the best I can."

As a first-year, what has been the main adjustment you’ve had to make at this level?

"Honestly I have not had much trouble adjusting so far. My coaches, captains and teammates have been extremely helpful. The only adjustment I have is managing school work with squash."

Your brother, Ramit Tandon, has been constantly been a leader for this team. What’s the best advice he’s given you?

"Ramit is the perfect role model and it’s great to be on the same team with him. We have never been on the same team before. He advises me and helps my game get better. He understands me the best and knows how I feel on and off court. He has always taught me how to enjoy squash and be humble."

What are the main goals you hope to achieve this season?

"We have a few important games coming up. Dartmouth and Penn are important matches and I hope we win both. We will try our best against Harvard and Princeton. From my experiences I have learned upsets do happen, so we will fight hard. We need to take one game at a time and do our best."