Monthly Archives: January 2018

Victory Snatched at the Death

Waverley 4 11-8 Galashiels

 

Graham Bensted 3-2 Gordon Scott

A tale of two halves in this game. Gordon Scott motored away in the first game, Scott would reel off 3-4 points at a time and Bensted would nick the odd point here and there when Scott hit the tin or put the ball out, this was 15-6 to Scott. In the second game again Scott would reel off several points 7-2, 10-4 and finally 15-9, at 2-0 up this looked very one-sided and was making for a quick match. The game had been long hard shots, both players trying power to win the rallies and had been a war of attrition which Scott was winning. In the third, Scott seemed to sit back a bit, and almost took it for granted too much and bested went for everything and refused to give up, although they were still playing shots to the back wall, now they were slightly looser and with the ball now quite hot it w\s bouncing more and this was extending the rallies; this seemed to suit Bensted and he went from 9-8 to 15-8 for the game.

Both players starting to vary the play now, Bensted was noticeably more confident and Scott seemed to slow slightly and probably rued taking his eye off the ball in the third, With a deft serve to the corner Bensted sneaked it 16-14 and 2-2. The momentum was with Bensted, and Scott now struggled to string off points and the deciding game opened with a series of winning serves as Bensted shot off to 6-0 and 11-3. Scott’s head was down and Bensted completed his comeback 15-8 for his first victory in the Leagues.

 

Del Sharratt 0-3 Dave Ferguson

In what is now a bit of a friendly rivalry, Sharratt and Ferguson took to the court, the Banter was flying as they both tried to out psyche each other with mind games, but when the match started they were both completely focussed on the task at hand. Ferguson seemed to have the guile from the start and his accurate drop shots to Sharratt’s forehand were all really tight and this was enough to seal several points for a comfortable 15-8. In the next Sharratt seemed to ‘wake up’ as the movement was better and he exploited Ferguson’s weaker point by full length shots to Fergusons backhand corner, but Ferguson persevered with his successful drop shots as although Sharratt made valliant efforts to reach them, they were all tight enough to the wall to be winners. It was a closed game, although Sharratt served for the game at 14-12 and the serve was down and Ferguson capitalised and took it 17-15. The third game again seen a sequence of forehand drops by Ferguson that seemed to make all the difference throughout the match and won 15-8 for the white wash.

 

Adam Niemczewski 0-3 Bob Porch

This was youth against experience as Adam, who was relatively new to competitive squash, bumped into an in form veteran of the game in Bob Porch. The thing with the veterans is although they MAY lose the fitness and speed over the years, the know how and skill never dies. Indeed Porch seemed to know exactly when to play what shot and when to fake shots.

This was too good for Adam who although he covered every inch of court just wasn’t clinical enough to take anything from the match, Porch won 15-10, 15-8, 15-9.

 

Tony Elliot 3-0 Peter Cochrane

Gala top seed, and STILL unbeaten Tony Elliot didn’t disappoint in this rubber, Peter Cochrane tried to throw everything at Elliot, but whenever Cochrane was getting the upperhand Elliot would change his game and take over again, I’d like to say Elliot bossed all the rallies and this was pretty straight forward but the scoreline doesn’t do Cochrane justice, Eliot just didn’t seem to miss anything! 15-5, 16-14, 15-7

 

Pat Spence 2-3 Florient Chevreul

This was match of the night, indeed a contender for match of the season. Seasoned Veteran Spence and young French prodigy Chevreul had the complete opposite styles of squash but this seemed to make for an amazing and tight tussle.

#chevreul, who was rather more erratic with his shots than Spence who placed his shots although was that yard slower. The first game went right to the wire at 14-14, it was a couple of clever serves that took it for Chevreul 16-14. The second game was going along similar to the first, Chevreul would run about endlessly but he didn’t know where his shots would end up so Spence had no chance! Then at 9-8 to Waverley, Spence appeared to run out of steam and the youngster ran off 15-9.

Spence knew he had the better, tighter hots and he too a couple of minutes to compose himself as he really didn’t fancy a 3-0 loss. Spence seemed to be a different player as he came out with guns blazing in the third and used his sqush brain to tire the French man out and switch his shots from front to back and he took it 15-11 to ensure Gala got at least 1 point from this game.

The match was now heating up, the other players were keen spectators as this rubber decided the match. Chevreul took command in the fourth, keeping one or two points ahead of Spence throughout, but his erratic shots meant he came unstuck and although Floriant served for the match at 15-14, a well controlled lob for Spence gave him the edge and he took it 17-15.

Now 2-2 in this game and 2-2 in rubbers, the pressure was on for both players. Spence appeared the more relaxed and Floriant more tense and the match was still intense as it went 10-10 and 14-14, it was Chevreul who held out in the end for 17-15 and took the match for Waverley.

 

Gala Captain Sharratt said afterwards “What a close exciting match, we always seem to have classic encounters against Waverley and this one could have went either way. Again Gala lose valiantly But we just need the rub of the green in these matches and we wll secure a victory.”

Haddington Howler

Tyne District 12-6 Gala

 

Harvey Kane 0-3 Dylan Pearman

12yo Pearman made it 2 victories out of 2 against Gala with a stunning performance against Gala debutant Kane. It seemed like Dylan could run about all day and was full of energy, Dylan commanded the match from the start and ran away 15-10, 15-0, 15-6.

 

Josh Bain 2 (w/d)-0 Iain Laing (2-3)

Bain had been commanding this game, and although took a 2-0 lead it was closer than the score suggests; but early in the third game Bain just twisted too much and pulled a muscle in his leg, he hit the floor like a sack of tatties and had to withdraw from the match. The match then was awarded as 3-2 to Iain Laing.

 

Ruaridh Kohler­­ 0-3 Gordon Hamilton

Ruaridh found the going tough in this match, Ruaridh normally a squas plkayer at no.5 had to step upto no. 3 due to call offs.

Ruaridh couldn’t be faulted for effort and determination, th first game seen some decent rallies but Tyne’s Hamilton just managed to keep the ball tighter to the walls to take it 15-9.

In the second Gordon seemed to switch up a gear and Ruaridh was sent to every corner of the court, Gordon stayed focussed and took it 15-2.

In the third Ruaridh found his length and enjoyed some prolonged control but the Tyne squasher just seemed to have the edge and took the third 15-9.

 

Del Sharratt 0-3 Nigel Pearman

Del was up against it in this tie, Pearman was normally the Haddington Clubs top seed and Del was usually in at 3-4 for Gala. Del gave a good account of himself; in the first game each player seemed to rattle off several points on the trot 4-0, 4-4, 8-4, 8-9, but in the end Pearmans skill shone through and he won the first 15-10.

The second game Pearman used textbook back-back-front to tire Sharratt out and although Sharratt read the shots well, Pearmans shots were too fast and tight and Del couldn’t return them, 15-4 to Tyne.

In the third Pearman seemed to let his racket drop a bit, some key shots finding the tin and it meant Del was getting into the game. Del enjoyed commanding the rallies for most of this but again Pearman’s skill meant he knew where the corners were and took it 15-11 for 3-0.

 

Tony Elliot 3-1 Chris Dixon

Ever Reliable Tony again secured a victory for Gala, Elliot, who has yet to be beaten in league 5, had the edge in what was an intense tussle.

A usual slow start for Tony, as Tyne’s Dixon won the first 15-13. Both these players knew how to hit the ball and there were several long rallies tight up and down the wall and the squash was top drawer. This was a closely contested match and after the 215-13 in the first the games went 12-15, 17-15 as there was nothing to separate the players.

In the fourth game Dixon was slowing his serves down but Tony clocked this and kept the pace of the game high and Dixon just faded towards the end with Tony triumphing 15-8.

 

Gala Captain Sharratt said afterwards Tyne have a strong team, and Dylan is one for the future. With the exception of Tony, this was a reserve team for Gala and it was a respectable score considering our line up.

I’ve got some of my big Guns back for next week, home against Waverley 4 and I will be disappointed if we don’t secure victory in that tie

New Year Same Story for Gala

Galashiels 7-13 Edinburgh Sports Club 8

 

Andrew Chapman 3-2 Del Sharratt

Two evenly matched players opened the match, there were signs of post New Year fatigue, but with similar speed and styles this was an awesome opener. Indeed the first game went to sudden death, both payers covered every inch of the court and Del took the deciding point with a full length serve to take it 18-16. The Second game was just as slose and neither player could pull away, but the shots were tight and there wasn’t a point that didn’t go several shots into the rally, it was Chapman that took it 15-13. In the third game, both players player the full length game and managed to keep each other at the back of the court. A few lucky nicks though meant Chapman won 15-13. Chapman was starting to feel heavy footed but Del capitalized as he played the percentage shots and his patience paid off for 15-8. At 2-2 and neither players head dropping the decider was again close all the way, Chapman seemed to have the upper hand in concentration though and his tactic of back-back-front took too much out of Del and The Edinburgh man won 15-12 for 3-2.

 

Jordan Amaral 3-1 Graham Bensted

Another evenly matched game, in this one both players were hard , fast hitters so it was more of a war of attrition than the rallies in the previous Tussle. Bensted used his trademark serve to the corner to take several points but the Edinburgh player, considerably younger and fitter held out in a close match. This went – 15-12, 15-5, 12-15, 15-13 to Amaral.

 

Amir Hosny 0-3 Arun Pathal,

Although teenager Pathal took this in straight sets 15-2, 15-5, 15-9, the games were more evenly matched than the score line suggests.

Gala’s Hosny, who had represented Glasgow Uni earlier in the week didn’t do much wrong in the match, he just couldn’t get the killer shot that Pathal seemed to manage during the rallies. Both players covered the court quickly and the shots were accurate. Young Pathal’s grit and determination was what really clinched the match. Amir said after “I felt I played really well, what a player that boy is, he’s one for the future”.

 

Pat Spence 1-3 Tony Hadden

Another fairly similar styled match. But this was about lobs and boasts as opposed to hard fast shots in the previous games. Both players used their Squash Brains for this as they tried to out think each other and disguise their shots. Hadden was a bit more accurate with his shots and took this one 15-10, 11-15, 15-10, 15-7.

 

Matthew Boyce 1-3 Tony Elliot

The battle of the top seeds didn’t fail to disappoint. Elliot, crowned Gala’s Club Champion in 2017, was a bit slow out of the blocks and some very out of sorts unforced errors let Boyce steal the opener 15-10. Elliot didn’t let this phase him and focussed on his game and motored away in the next three games and although Boyce fought valiantly Elliot rattled off the next 3 games 15-6, 15-5, 15-8.

 

Captain Del Sharratt said “That was a battle; probably the most even squash match we’ve had in the league to date, all the players were similarly matched to the opponents and possibly home advantage was the key.”