Tag Archives: knockout

Gill Retains Club Title

On Monday 30th November, reigning champion Andy Gill took to the court for the defence of his title against a constantly improving Luis Molero. Along the path of his defence Andy had seen off 2014 runner up Ian Chalmers 3-1 and 2013 Champion John Sharratt 3-0 in the Semi-Final.  Luis had defeated two opponents he had never beaten before: Michael Haywood 3-0 and in the Semi Final took the scalp of Poland’s Adam Niemczewsi 3-1.

Many had Luis written off before the final and Andy took the first game relatively quickly, 9-2, as the gulf in quality seemed evident.  But something just clicked for Luis in the second game and despite Andy Gill romping to a 3-0 lead, Luis’ enthusiasm and determination saw him fight for every point and return shots that lesser mortals would have given up on - even the tight shots and  the balls out of the corners – to take the game 9-4.

The third game saw some long rallies and awesome squash, the pair seemed happy rallying the ball down the walls and trying to force their opponent to make a mistake. Stamina and concentration were the deciding factors in this game and with Andy capitalising on some loose shots from Molero this one went the way of Andy,  9-2.

In the fourth game Luis used his key shot – an excellent overhead backhand return of serve which just kills the ball in the front corner, Luis claimed at least 4 serves back with this shot as Andy found no answer to it.  Then some accurate and powerful serves that seemed to find the corners perfectly ensured Luis levelled the match 2-2 with a 9-4 victory.

Luis served first for the deciding game and immediately found fatigue kicking in as his serve went AWOL and nearly ended up in the viewing gallery upstairs.  Andy capitalised by taking a 3-0 lead relatively quickly and although Luis ran for every ball and nearly burnt a hole in his soles the reigning champion seemed slightly more at ease in the final game and soon took a commanding 6-1 lead.  Luis’s usual signature shot- his forehand straight drop shot was starting to find the tin as fatigue started to affect his concentration and despite a late push and several ecxhanges of serves Andy became only the fourth man in recent history to successfully defend their maiden title.

A gruelling encounter came to a conclusion as Andy triumphed 3-2 (9-2, 4-9, 9-2, 2-9, 9-2).

Match umpire Del Sharratt said ” The quality of squash on display was the best I have seen for some time, all credit to BOTH players. If Luis had played like that against anyone else at the club he would likely have won the match.  I have no doubt the name of Luis Molero will feature on the Champions Board in the not too distant future.”

Del Sharratt (Left) presents Andy Gil lwith the Trophy, Luis Molero looks on wistfully

Del Sharratt (Left) presents Andy Gil lwith the Trophy, Luis Molero looks on wistfully

Andy with the trophy

Andy with the trophy

 

Gala & BGH: squashing for charity

Members from Galashiels Squash Club teamed up with staff from the BGH and some guests for a charity squash match. The event was for the Friends of the BGH to raise money for a Photo Dynamic Therapy lamp for Skin Cancer patients and over £400 was raised.
The Tournament was straight knock out and there was a plate tournament and a shield tournament for first and second round losers.
In an epic Final, Walkerburn’s Brendan Calaghan of East Sports Club beat Gala’s current Squash Club Champion Andy Gill 11-6, 13-11. It was an awesome display of squash and it could have gone either way. Each time Brendan pulled away Andy fought back and there was some thrilling rallies as each player didn’t want to concede anything to the opponent. After the match Brendan said “It was an intense affair and I had to keep focus and concentration to win, Andy Gill played really well and was a tough opponent”.
In the Plate Tournament, Gala squash Club Captain Del Sharratt won a slightly easier match against Andy Greenfield 11-9, 11-6, and in the Shield tournament final, Top Porter held out 11-7, 11-6 against Steve Brown.
Sandra Henwood, representative of The Friends of the BGH, said “A big thankyou to Gala Squash Club for helping with this, this was an amazing and thoroughly enjoyable event; and a special Thankyou to Del Sharratt for organising the tournament and draw for the occasion. The money raised is an extremely big step to purchasing the PDT Lamp, which is vital in the treatment of skin cancer”.
Main Event 1/4 Fianls:
Brendan Callaghan 2-0 Bill Urquhart; Paul Neery 2-0 Rachel McAleese; Andy Gill 2-0 Ruaridh Kohler; Sandy Morris 2-0 Luis Molero;
Semis:
Callaghan 2-0 Neery; Gill 2-0 Morris; FINAL – Callaghan 2-0 Gill
Plate Tournament 1/4 Final:
Del Sharratt 2-0 John Barrow; Dawn McBrayne 2-0 Darren Quinn; Andy Greenfield 2-1 Vineeth Ravindran; John McLaron 2-0 Simon Watson;
Semis:
Sharratt 2-0 McBrayne; Greenfield 2-0 McLaron; FINAL – Sharratt 2-0 Greenfield
Shield Tournament Semis:
Steve Brown 2-0 Joy Borowska; Tom Porter 2-1 Simon Watson; – FINAL: Porter 2-0 Brown.
Gala Club Captain Del Sharratt presents Brendan Callaghan with the winners trophy

Gala Club Captain Del Sharratt presents Brendan Callaghan with the winners trophy

Several of the players including kneeling - Finalists Andy Gill and Brendan O'Callaghan

Several of the players including kneeling – Finalists Andy Gill and Brendan O’Callaghan

Rachel is handicap champion

In an epic final of the 2015 handicap competition, Rachel McAleese started on +8 against Del Sharratt on -4. Games were point-a-rally to 15, meaning that 2013 runner up Del was up against it if he was going to triumph in the best of 5 match. Rachel took the first game quite convincingly (15-6) as both players were pretty slow to get going, but in the second game a near flawless performance saw Del take it 15-9. The third game was a tight affair, as Del’s powerful serves and Rachel’s drop shots were all successful and Rachel eventually took it 15-14. Another focused performance, coupled with quick movement from Del won him the fourth game 15-9.  Locked at 2-2 and both players tiring the deciding game had more rallies as neither player wanted to give an inch to their opponent – then at 14-10 down a very rare loose serve from Del gave Rachel the title by 3 games to 2.  Del congratulated Rachel and said ” I am pleased for Rachel, it was a good fast paced match in the end and it could have gone either way; I will just have to work hard and come back next year.”

In the final of the plate competition Ian Chalmers (-2) beat Joe Eyre (+2) 3-1 – {15-9; 15-10; 16-17; 15-12}.  Joe was the reigning Handicap Quaich Champion and was quietly confident of repeating that success. Both players showed good movement and had long tight shots. In the third game Joe saved two match points but it was the younger Ian Chalmers whose fitness won out in the end as Joe faded towards the end of the tie.

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2014 Final photo 1

Gill Takes Men’s Knockout

Gala Squash Club Results – Club Championship Final 2014

What better way to burn off the excess Christmas weight than an action packed game of squash, and that was just for the spectators.  For finalists Andy GIll and Ian Chalmers it was a much more intense affair.  After a series of delays due to holidays and injuries the 2014 final eventually got under way; Andy Gill, the 2012 runner-up, had impressed on his road to the final having whitewashed his previous opponents – John Sharratt and Del Sharratt 3-0 in the 1/4 finals and Semi Final respectively; The youthful Ian Chalmers was playing in his first tournament final at the Squash Club and was confident of an upset.  But Andy’s superiority shone through as he claimed the title – again without dropping a game (3-0).  Ian Chalmers was on the backfoot from the start and lost the first game 9-4, during the second game Ian showed some improvement with amazing agility and movement but several unforced errors eventually lost him the game 9-6, in the third game the difference was consistency as every one of Andy’s shots seemed to find the back corners and he took the game 9-3.

The Match umpire Del Sharratt said after the match “It was a difficult match to keep track of as the players were so fast and there was a lot of tit-for-tat serving as it was Server only Scores”.

2014 Final photo 2

Andy Gill beat Ian Chalmers 3-0 (9-4, 9-6, 9-3)

New Ladies Champion

In what was the first Ladies Club Championship for a decade, Sandra McCutcheon and Jane Logan played out a thrilling final.  Both ladies played out of their skin as they both wanted to be the first lady for 10 years to get their name on the Club Champion’s Board.  Both players used intelligence and cunning throughout the match to out-fox their opponent.  Sandra took the first game quite convincingly due to some loose shots from Jane.  Jane tightened up her game in the second, with shots tight to the wall, and Jane started killing the ball at key moments making it difficult for Sandra to get into a rhythm. But some excellent movement ensured Sandra took the second game too.  Going into the third game both ladies were focussed and had to think about their shots as some long rallies and quick movement by both players made for a highly entertaining game. Despite Jane’s best efforts Sandra fought for every point and secured the match 3-0, final scores 9-3, 9-4, 9-3.

After the match Jane congratulated Sandra and both players said they were delighted to have had such an entertaining final. Sandra said “It was great to win the first ladies final in the decade and was a fun match, this is exciting times for ladies squash in the Borders.”

The final was umpired by Agnes Burnie and scored by Rachel McAleese.

Sands and Jane final

New Club Champion

A huge congratulations to John Sharratt – club champion for the first time. John triumphed over Graham Laing in the final, which was played in December 2013. After several appearances in the final over recent years, John was beginning to think he would never win the tournament – just goes to show that perseverance pays off. Hopefully there’ll  be lots of hopefuls vying to knock John off his perch in the 2014 tournament, coming in the autumn.

John S and Graham L 2013John Sharratt