Yarrawonga squash icon Brian Lyons is honoured and eager to participate in the Queens baton relay to be held in Yarrawonga next February in connection with the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.
Brian’s eldest daughter Vicki nominated him for the relay due to his extensive involvement in local squash and the assistance he still provides in running the Yarrawonga club to this day.
“I knew Vicki had nominated me but I hadn’t heard anymore until I saw my name in the Chronicle,” Brian said.
“To get selected out of however many people are nominated, I’m really pleased about that.”
Brian has been involved in squash in Yarrawonga for 45 years after he and wife Margaret built and owned the Yarrawonga squash courts in 1972 and ran a junior tournament there for 12 years.
Due to his work and involvement in the tournament he was selected to run with the Olympic torch in Yarrawonga in 2000 and said it was one of the most exciting things he has done.
“I’m very excited for this relay, if its anything like the Olympic Batonbearer relay it will be tremendous,” Brian said.
Brian is still involved in the squash centre through coaching of up-and-comers and even still playing himself, winning tournaments and travelling overseas to play in masters events.
Just last month he became the Australian Champion in the Over 75 Squash Championships in Ballarat and has won the Victorian Championships two seasons in a row.
In the past he has played masters in Hong Kong, world masters in Johannesburg and will be going to Virginia in the United States next year.
Brian’s love for squash even transferred to his personal life when he designed and built his house to revolve around a squash court which is now positioned in the middle of his house.
Although avidly involved in squash Brian also played footy for Tungamah back in the day and tennis at Wilby.
Besides squash Brian has a vast interest and hobby as a prospector- a type of explorer looking for gold or minerals by using a metal detector, as well as panning.
He and Margaret are also members of a prospector group generally travel to Western Australia for three months at a time searching for gold.
Brian is also involved in volunteer work and works privately for different people.
Being selected as a Queen’s Batonbearer is something Brian holds dear.
“I was very surprised and it’s always a privilege to do these types of things,” Brian said.
“Not everybody gets the opportunity so when you get the honour to carry the Queens Baton it’s great.”
Brian has been able to celebrate his news with his wife Margaret and four daughters – Vicki, Kerryn, Nicole and Rochelle each who have kids that also like to play squash.
Brian is sure to have a crowd cheering him on in February with many people who have been involved with the squash club over the years lining the streets to see him in action and congratulate him on his work within the community.