Busani Xaba Is Named Head Coach of Men's and Women's Squash at Amherst College

Busani Xaba Is Named Head Coach of Men's and Women's Squash at Amherst College

(AMHERST, Mass., June 8, 2020) — Busani Xaba has been named the head coach of the Amherst College men's and women's squash programs, it was announced today by Director of Athletics Don Faulstick. An England Squash Level 2 coach with 18 years of experience on three continents, Xaba was, most recently, the Director of Squash and Athletics at the University Club of San Francisco and, previously, an assistant coach at Dartmouth College. The appointment is effective August 1.

"I'd like to welcome Busani to the College and to our department," said Faulstick. "His experience at all levels, especially at Dartmouth, will be a valuable asset to our students off and on the court. He is extremely respected in the squash community, and I couldn't be happier that he will lead our programs. I know his passion, work ethic and care for our students will be the cornerstones of their success and take our program to new heights."

"I'd also like to thank interim head coach Stuart George and the 2019-20 assistant coaches, Laura Danai, Todd Doebler and Graham Gal, as well as the captains, for stepping up last year," Faulstick continued. "Their commitment to our squash programs made an important and positive impact and helped to build a stronger foundation for both teams." 

As the Director of Athletics at the University Club of San Francisco since 2012, Xaba has grown the game in the San Francisco area, more than doubling the club's membership over the past five years while developing strong competitive junior and adult squash programs through the organization of tournaments, leagues and clinics. He also supported junior players with the college recruitment process.

"My family and I are deeply honored to be joining the Amherst community," said Xaba.  "Throughout my 13 years in the U.S., I've gotten to know many Amherst alumni and have seen the positive impact the school has made on each of their lives. One of my top priorities as a coach is to create an environment that allows our student-athletes to excel, both on and off the court. I'd like to thank the Athletic Director, Don Faulstick, and the Provost and Dean of the Faculty, Catherine Epstein, for trusting me to take on this role leading the men's and women's squash programs." 

Outside of the courts, Xaba advises and serves as a member of the development committee for SquashDrive, a nonprofit urban squash program focusing on the academics, wellness and character development of underserved youth in Oakland,Calif.

"I'm thrilled to see Busani join Amherst College Athletics," said Hansi Wiens, head coach of men's and women's squash at Dartmouth College. "His passion for the sport, professionalism and contagious energy are immediately evident to everyone who meets him. He has a proven track record of developing players, both in a collegiate setting at Dartmouth College, but also as a private coach. What differentiates him is that he does not rest on the wealth of knowledge he has, but is always willing to listen and always looking to learn and grow, all the while with a big, genuine smile on his face."

Prior to his time in San Francisco, Xaba spent six years coaching at the collegiate level, as an assistant for two top-10, nationally ranked programs at Dartmouth College and as the head coach of the men's club squash team at the University of California, Berkeley. 

A former national champion in his native Zimbabwe, Xaba rose through the junior ranks during his playing career and helped the national team finish 15th overall at the under-19 Junior Men's World Championships in 2000. He completed a two-year course in sports and recreation at Kingston Maurward College in Dorchester, England.

Amherst College prepares students to use ideas to make a difference in the world. Since its founding, in 1821, in Western Massachusetts, Amherst has demonstrated steadfast confidence in the value of the liberal arts and the importance of critical thinking. Today, its financial aid program is among the most substantial in the nation, and its student body is among the most diverse. Small classes, an open curriculum and a singular focus on undergraduate education ensure that leading scholars engage daily with talented, curious students, equipping them for leadership in an increasingly global and complex world. The College will celebrate its bicentennial in 2021.

Busani Xaba's Coaching Career
2020: Amherst College (Head Coach)
2012-2020: University Club of San Francisco (Director of Squash and Athletics)
2012-2014: University of California, Berkeley (Head Coach, Club Men's Squash)
2009-2012: Dartmouth College (Assistant Coach)
2007-2009: San Diego Squash (Head Coach)

For all the latest on Amherst College men's and women's squash, stay tuned to athletics.amherst.edu and follow the Mammoths (@amherstmammoths) on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

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