Monthly Archives: November 2018

Sweet Victory over Abercorn

Border Reivers 16-4 Abercorn

Del Sharratt 1-3 Stewart Simpson

A well matched pairing, both players had similar styles of play. Whenever one player had the hand they would rattle off 3-4 points (2-4, 7-4, 7-10, 11-10) at 15-15 Del played the serve out and Stewart punished him 17-15, the second game although Del took a 7-2 lead, Stewart fought valiantly and again the game was close. At 11-11 Del kept his shots tight and got to everything and took it 15-11. Del seemed to tire and Stewart had the better stamina, Del wasn’t going for some of the shots later in the match that he returned with ease earlier in the game and Stewart won 15-8, 15-9.

 

Graham Bensted 3-1 Peter O’Conner

Graham took the first in a one sided 15-5 affair, he bossed the game from the start and the spectators were expecting this to be over quickly but Peter had other ideas and dug deep in the second game, Peter didn’t take the ball so quickly and changed his stance, the adjustment threw Bensted and a lot of long fast rallies made for a more entertaining game, Bensted took it 15-10 for 2-0. Graham appeared to have a rest in the third, O’Conner triumphed 15-8 and either Bensted had exhausted his arsenal or was pacing himself and eased off slightly; it proved to be the latter though as a focussed performance and some aces meant Bensted took it 15-8 for 3-1.

 

Iain Laing 3-0 Bernard Starkey

Laings record since returning form injury was played 2 won 2, for 6 against 0. Iain plays a calculated and slow game as he reads the shots and susses out his opponent. Bernard Starkey, who had been around at Abercorn for many years would try to step up a gear every so often, but Laing would just step up two gears. This went 15-10, 15-11, 15-6 to Iain

 

Amir Hosny 3-0 Tom Clemens

With Tony Elliot and Pat Spence both abroad; Amir had to play at No.1 seeding, this was his debut at No.1 and he didn’t disappoint. Although some of the shots were loose this made for long rallies and Amir was trying several different shots and varied his game to keep Tom Clemens on his toes and the Abercorn man had to second guess everything; several points were won by Amir just with Tom going the wrong way. It wasn’t one sided, indeed Clemens had 4 game points in the first game before Amir stuck in and took it 19-17, the remaining games all went close and although the score suggests oterwise this was a very close affair 19-17, 15-11, 15-11.

 

Reivers Captain Del said “I’m really pleased with this victory, we had several key players missing and I wasn’t sure how the game would go. Abercorn only brought 4 players as opposed to the usual 5 so Gary Bramble went home without lifting his racket but it meant he won by default 3-0. But the team done really well and the effort the guys put in cannot be faulted.”

Hat’s Off for Hatton

Border Reivers 8-12 Hatton

 

Del Sharratt 3-0 Tim Wong

Del commanded this match from the word go, the Reivers Captain continued his recent form and a run of 3 victories. Del motored off to 3-0 and 4-0 starts in the games which meant he could relax in the games, most of Dels tight shots were winners but when Tim Wong was also replying with tight shots, Del just stayed focussed and played the percentage shots and Tim Wong would inevitably slip up at some point, it meant several long rallies and Del came off feeling like he had played a five setter; 15-7, 15-9, 15-13.

 

Graham Bensted 1-3 Nick Tinning

This game was more exciting and went one way then the other. Tinning started strongest getting off to a 6-1 lead fairly quickly and seemed the faster and more focussed player taking the first 15-6. The second was a mirror of the first as Bensted this time took a 6-1 lead, and most of the Reivers veterans shots were finding the corners this went Bensted’s way15-7. The match became a bit of a ding dong affair with neither player able to shake off the opponent and several let/stroke calls also kept the Referee Busy. Bu in the end Hatton took the tie 15-6, 7-15, 15-9, 15-12.

 

Iain Laing 3-0 Malcolm Mitchell

This marked the Return to the team for Gala Squash Club’s Two Time Champion Iain Laing. Laing, who hadn’t featured for 12 months due to injuries started a bit cagey and took a while to get going as he was wary of aggravating previous injuries. But Laing got into his stride, and his squash know-how and accurate shots were evident. Mitchell seemed to snatch at all LAings serves and it prevented the match from flowing but Laing won this one for the Reivers 15-11, 15-4, 15-12

 

Amir Hosny 1-3 Sammy Caseby

Caseby was making his debut for Hatton Squash Club, Caseby had previously played for now defunct Deer Park and proved a worthy addition to the Hatton team. Hosny seemed to be tight and lack agility as Caseby took 13 points before Hosny toubled the scorer, Hatton took the first two games 15-3, 15-10. Then Hosny seemed to relax in the third and play like he was enjoying it and this seemed to help his shot placement as he took the third 15-12. The match now flowing and long fast rallies made a thoroughly enjoyable spectacle for the fans. At 15-14 and game ball in the fourth Hosny served out and Caseby took over and won the match 17-15 and 3-1.

 

Pat Spence 0-3 Alan Love

Pat Spence found the Top Seed position tough going, regular No. 1 Tony Elliot was missing on holiday and Tony was :Usually a banker for 3 points. This was 15-8, 15-7, 15-5 to Alan Love. Spence started off well and didn’t seem to do much wrong. Alan Love was just that extra yard quicker and played slightly tighter shots and blew spence away with some awesome squash. This won the match for Hatton.

Toughest task yet

Border Reivers 5-15 Heriot Watt 3s

 

Del Sharratt 3-0 Jorge Gomez

A polished performance by Del ensured the Reivers opened with a victory. Del seemed to find total performance in all areas, movement, drop shots, full length sots, boasts. Everything seemed to click for Del at the same time and Jorge had no reply. Even when the Student got the Hand back Del’s returns would go exactly where he wanted them and Jorge couldn’t find any momentum; Sharratt won 15-6, 15-8, 15-7.

 

Graham Bensted 0-3 Josie Wishart

This was the same result as last season, the younger fitter student was just to fast for the seasoned veteran. Bensted boasted a strong powerful serve but once they got into the rallies it was the fitness of Wishart that shone through and the student took his 15-8, 15-8, 15-9.

 

Pat Spence 1-3 Euan Hurter

Euan Hurters skill and ability on the court took Spence a wee bit by surprise, this was Spence’s toughest game to date. The young student – like his compatriots had excellent stamina and speed. Hurter flew to a 15-6 vicroty in the first game. Spence – who boasts 40 years of experience on the court changed his game in the second, Spence made Hurter move off the T-line more and varied his shots to keep Hurter guessing and this worked for Spence 15-13. In the third game Euan again dominated the rallies, Pat still made the student run about but the youngster didn’t seem to tire and a close game went 15-11 to Hurter; the fourth game seen Spence tire slightly and drop his racket head causing some errors and Heriot Watt took this 15-8 for 3-1.

 

Amir Hosny 0-3 Peter Weston

Hosny, who was used to 3-2 games in the league came up against a former League 2 player in Peter Weston, Although Amir was equal in fitness and speed, Peter proved why he was capable of playing in the higher leagues and won through quite comfortably 15-3, 15-3, 15-5.

 

Tony Elliot 1-3 Bruno Shaw

Although Heriot Watt had wrapped up the victory in the previous rubber, Elliot had an undefeated record to think about and this was in no way a pointless match. Tony Elliot won the first 15-11 in what was a tough opener, the rallies were fast and Elliot found himself on the back foot in a lot of the rallies. Bruno Shaw, who’s record boasted competitive matches against Scotland Internationals Kevin Moran and Rory Stewart; was on his way back from a Cruciate Ligament injury and hence why he wasn’t yet picked for Heriot Watt’s higher teams. Bruno’s fitness didn’t seem to be in doubt though and this was a highly exciting match which drew all the other players as spectators. Bruno took the second 15-9 and it was looking like he could turn it up anytime he liked. But Elliot gave a good show of himself, but just wasn’t getting his shots as tight as he needed and Bruno would have space and time to play a shot of his choosing. The rest of the game was close and Elliot lost his first match in League 5 by 3-1 (11-15, 15-9, 15-13, 9-15)

 

Gala Captain Del said “That is the strongest team we have met in League 5, we came into this on theback of two decent victories and moral was high. Bruno and Western are arguably the two best players in the league, and I can’t fault my boys for effort.”

Two in a row for Reivers

Border Reivers 12-8 Grange 5

 

Iain Gorman 0-3 Josh Stokes

Iain Gorman was a last minute call-up for the team as Graham bensted called off due to an emergency literally one hour before kick off. Although Gorman couldn’t be faulted for effort, Stokes proved too strong for the Borderer. The first game was tight and had plenty of rallies. But Stokes was just that wee bit more accurate and took it 15-12. Although Iain Gorman never stopped running for the ball, Stokes shots were just that wee bit out of Gormans reach and Grange ran out 15-7, 15-7.

 

Del Sharratt 0-3 Andrew Light

This game was closer than the soreline suggests. Although Andrew took a 10-5 lead in the first game, Del clawed it back to 11-9 with a series of aces that found the nick. But Andrew stayed focussed to take it 15-10. In the second game, Del quickly took control and again some awesome serves made it 6-1 to Del. But Andrew got in with a drop shot that was too good for Del and then rattled off a series of points to go 7-6. With control now with the City boy, he took the second 15-12. The third game started as a mirror image to the second, with Andrew Lighbt shooting away to a 6-1 lead with some unreturnable serves. Del never really got a grip of this game and was always chasing it eventually going down 15-8.

 

Pat Spence 3-1 John Wallace

The tie started close, more than 80 years of experience between the players meant the shots were well thought out. Spence had a great technique to send the opponent the wrong way, he would set up the same for every shot and it left Wallace guessing where the ball would go. Although the first couple of games were really close, Spence’s fitness won through as he motored away and wrapped up the tie 17-15, 12-15, 15-7, 15-3.

 

Amir Hosny 3-1 Jonathan Hughes

This was tie of the night, Hughes had previously been unbeaten against the Borderers but Hosny won out. The first game went 15-12 to Hughes, the shots were fast and tight and great squash was played, neither player wanted to give up and it was just occasional nicks that won the points. The second game was 15-12 to Hosny. Amir didn’t seem to tire and again this was a great display of squash by both players- The points were won by changing from full length to drop shots or vice versa. During the third game, Hosny knew his opponent was weaker at the back of the court on his backhand so Hosny sent most of his shots to that corner and the tactic won with 15-8 to Hosny. The fourth game Hughes tightened up his back hand and was dominating the rallies, able to stand on the t-line and make Hosny do the running. At 14-6 to Hughes he seemed to start swiping his shots and Hosny got the serve back, Hosny seemed to relax and this helped him play tighter shots as he expected it to go to a fourth game, but a relaxed Hosny soon had the game at 14-14 and Hughes couldn’t deal with the pressure as well as Hosny and the Reivers player took it 18-16 for thw 3-1 wictory.

 

Tony Elliot 3-0 Josh Bain

This tie was pretty straight forward for Reivers top seed; Josh Bain showed some glimpses of a great player and was able to put the ball pretty much where he chose to. But Tony was just equal to anything Josh could throw at him and won out 15-11, 15-6, 15-6.

 

Gala Captain Del said “It was always going to be a tough tie after Bensted pulled out just before the match started, it meant I had to shuffle things around and it was fantastic that Iain Gorman could step up at short notice. This puts us above Grange 5s in the table so it was an important victory.”

High 5 for Reivers

Border Reivers 15-4 Waverley 4s

 

Del Sharratt 3-2 Stuart Johnston

In the first match of the night, Del had a point to prove as Stuart had won both previous encounters 3-0 – but with really close games and Sharratt felt he should be beating Johnston. Again this proved to be a close tussle, the match started with Johnston taking a 3-0 lead and Sharratt brought it back to 3-3, the rest of the game progresses with either player taking 1-2 points then the opponent dong likewise, the match went 10-10, 12-12- 14-14 and with 2 points needed to win the game the players knew it would be tough to pull away. The game went on point for point until Sharatt pulled out a fast backhand that flew passed Johnston to take it 22-20! The second game went mus the same way, as soon as one player got a 2-3 point lead, the opponent would bring it back; this game also went to 14-14 but Stuart produced two serves that just didn’t bounce to take it 16-14. Stuart took a 5-1 lead in the third and semed to be varying his game with front court boasts that would send Del the wrong way, Stuart took this a slightly more comfortable 15-10. Sharratt took a couple of minutes to focus between the 3rd and 4th game and seemed to find adrenalin from somewhere as his long full court shots were too good for Stuart and the Reivers Captain got to 6-1 before Stuart goe going again, but the revigoratd Sharratt played tight shots and kept Johnston behind him so he could control the ralies and won 15-12. It was 2-2 and into a deciding game, Del didn’t have much left in the tank, but Stuart seemed to drom his racket half an inch and found the tin more often in this game, it was 9-6 to Sharratt when he reled off 5 points just from deft serves and held on for 15-7 and 3-2.

 

Graham Bensted 3-0 Ronnie Petrie

This match was more straight forward than the Sharratt-Johnston tussle. Bensted had a fast powerful serve and if Petrie didn’t find the volley return it meant Bensted could control the rallies and therefore the match. It wasn’t all one way traffic though, when Petrie did return the serves he proved a good skilful player who played very accurate shots and made Bensted work round the court. Bensted was too good in theend though and won 17-15, 15-11, 15-9.

 

 

Pat Spence 3-2 Dave Ferguson

This was the battle of the Veterans, both players have played league squash for many years up and down the country and the crowd were hopful for a spectacular tie.

The match wasn’t spectacular but swung from one side to the other. The courts in Gala are colder than the city players are used to and this meant It was easy to kill the ball as there wasn’t much bounce without rallies warming the ball up.

The match progressed very much Serve-Return-Kill Serve-Return-Kill but the first game went in Ferguson’s favour 15-13, then the second game although much the same with few rallies was a one-sided 15-3 for spence. The server would serve to the back of the court and the receiver would return to th back of the court and one drop shot to the front would be out of reach, then it went 15-8 Ferguson and 15-11 Spence. Although this tie was also 2-2, there had ben more shots played in one game between Sharratt and Johnston as this entire match. The fifth game seen some loose returns which did make for a couple of 6-7 shot rallies and Spence made home advantage count 15-11 for the victory.

 

 

Amir Hosny 3-0 Gordon Scott

Youth v experience this time, and Youth won out, the first game was a close 15-11 and both players played a controlled tight game, neither wanting to take risks and playing the percentage shots. But The next games seen Amir use his youthful fitness and stamina to his advantage and could cover the court relatively quickly and total focus meant only a couple of rare misses for Hosny and he wrapped it up 15-4, 15-4.

 

Tony Elliot 3-0 Florent Chevreuil

French prodigy Chevreuil, who had beaten Pat Spence in last years match up found Elliot was a level above and couldn’t live with the Borderer, Elliot controlling the game and the rallies. Although Florent had an uncharacteristic off-night and couldn’t find consistency with his shots, this was frustrating the Frenchman and his head went down. Elliot just stayed composed and never seemed to be in doubt about any of his shots. Indeed Tony won out 15-8, 15-5, 15-6.

 

Gala Captain Sharratt said afterwards “What an amazing team effort, a clean sweep of victories and we are now at an all time high of fifth in the table, our courts are colder than most of the city courts which affecgts the bounce of the ball and we can use the home advantage well this season. I will look to keep the same team for next weeks tussle against our rivals Grange 5s.”