And what a final with Nicol winning 3-2 against Harrow’s Raneem El Welily
(including the best 4th game you’ll probably ever see!)
You may be fearing the worst for us as this report is late, but don’t be deceived we had a great match up against Hamilton 2 and it could have gone either way, but they made the mistake of not bringing a mascot! (and our Kelvin FP shirts were better than theirs!).
Also the unbelievable happened last Saturday (on the night of the Christmas outing) and Doug beat me in a match (albeit 12-10 in the last game) so he was No.2 tonight (although he was 2 hours late for work on the Sunday – lightweight youngster!).
Dave & Elvi Craig (dad & mascot/daughter) turned up first and their opponent was Keith Martin from Hamilton. Dave is actually warming up on a regular basis these days and winning 1st games as well! Same tonight 1st game secured. And you’ll never believe this but he won the 2nd as well. I know what you’re thinking let’s fast forward to the 5th! Wrong! No one could believe it Dave won 3-0 (didn’t let Keith in once). Can’t really give you a report this week as Elvi kept me busy walking all over the club pointing at random people and shouting “Daddy” and there was nothing to read in the Elvi bag either (note to Dave’s missus – more books please). At one point Doug saw Elvi & I on the ‘wire and movable beads table’ and just said “You’re enjoying that more than her!
Next on was Michael Jackson (hee-hee!) against Gregor Braidwood and I went on at the same time so can’t really tell you about this one much either. However Michael Jackson obviously did ‘Wanna be Startin somethin’” and after the loss of the 1st game (9-11) he did. The tables turned dramatically as he won the next 3 – he obviously thought when chasing all of Gregor’s shots I’ve “Got To Be There”!!
As I say I was on next at No.3 against Calum Phillip and another great tussle and always a 3-2 to be had between us. Reading Calum’s game is incredibly difficult as you don’t really know where the ball is going – and it goes there really quickly!! On top of that it was the battle of the least fit tonight. I was knackered from a 1500 mile 3 day trip and Calum had the cold! I didn’t even see the ball in the first, but by 2-2 was beginning to read some shots!
Just then a 4th team player (Raymond) came up to me between games and said “Don’t you dare lose this by doing what you always tell us not to!” well that was a bit of a wake-up call and was probably what motivated me to win the 5th 11-6. To be fair Calum was fading fast, but a win’s a win!
Craig (Valentie-Wallace) was up against Kenny Boyle tonight at No.1 and no one else would referee it, so I had to take the board!! Both players looked incredulously at me if I gave a decision against them, whilst the other 100% agreed with me (so you know you’re doing a half decent job if that happens) e.g. Me – “Yes let.” Player coming off the court for a ‘chat’ “Why’s that not a stroke?” Me “Because you were fishing for a stroke (with an unreasonable swing) when it was obviously a let.” One player disgusted – the other player delighted! (well marking is a tough and thankless task, but also part of the Wednesday night experience – thankfully no one fell out with anyone).
A hard fought game between Craig and Kenny at about 8-8 in both of the first two games. But it was Kenny who prevailed in both. To win against Kenny you have to win every rally 3 or 4 times and I thought if Craig could keep the rallies going – with a few soft pace shots to keep him in it at times – he may have a chance. Unfortunately Kenny’s game is great these days and he hit’s a mean length and he’s as relentless as ever. Craig lost a bit of heart toward the end of the match and Kenny ended up winning 3-0, but it could have been much closer than the 3-0 result suggests (however it’s a team game and without Craig we’d have definitely lost the match).
Last on was the match of the night as Doug (MacMillan) played Grant Grey at No.2. The 1st game exemplified the whole match with a 13-11 tie break and a massive battle of wills. And so to the 5th! The squash was great to watch just for the sheer physical effort – both players were great & fair competitors – physical and determined individuals and up to 7-7 in the 5th you couldn’t get a cigarette paper between them! Then the mother of all disasters for Doug.
Tin- tin – tin – out!
10-7 match ball and no where back from there.
To say Doug was a tad upset would be a massive understatement. The racket learned how to fly and the bag got a kicking. It really hurt him!
I saw him in the changing room later and he said the immortal lines “Not that I care about squash results anyway!” …..I let it go!
Only a bloody shandy to drink with dinner! I’ve not ordered a shandy in about 20 years!?!?! (Doug would only drink water!)
Newlands 1 – and the hits just keep on coming. Oh well I’m sure they wouldn’t have their full team out against us! Wrong! Greg Lobban, the PSA World No.63 at No.1 – Peter O’Harrow (!) at No.2 (2013 Over 40s British Open Champ) – Matt Bedwell at 3 (U19 No.15 in England) – Angus Woodward at 4 (not lost this year!) and up from Carlisle Vicky Bell at No.5
So, a short night then!
At first, no one was very sure who was playing No.1 for Newlands and when Alan Pearson turned up (their Team manager – and Newlands guru!) he said ‘I thought your No.1 would have told you’. Interesting! It’s up to the opposition to tell us what the Newlands line up is! I’m sure that’s not how Chelsea do it!
Mind you it wasn’t all bad news, as the new team shirts arrived this week and thanks to Kelvin Financial Planning (our new Sponsor) we looked very professional in the new team strip (as did the 3rd & 4th team who were playing each other – pictured)
Having said all that we secured the team point on the very first game of the night, as David Craig actually warmed up for once and stormed the 1st game 12-10! But maybe we should have quit while we were up!
Angus started hitting a great length and won 3-1. Great team point though (must have been the return of the team mascot!).
Well that was an interesting one tonight and I’m tempted to write 2 separate reports about our match up against (the newly developing – see pic left) Western away; which I’ve only ever done once before! In truth however the match in question was probably just a bit of a storm in a teacup.
Earlier on today – as I was getting out of the shower – there was a ring on the doorbell. I had no towel on, so I just shouted,
“Who’s there?” and the reply came back,
“It’s the blind man.” So I opened the door and there was this bloke standing in the porch holding a big cardboard box. He looked at me and said,
“So, where do you want these blinds?”……. I wish the wife would tell me when she orders this stuff!
Well I was up at 5am and coaching at 6am on Wednesday morning so was well warmed up by 6.30pm as I arrived at Giffnock awaiting David Craig – and daughter Elvi the team mascot (and not a group of Elvis’s as the pronunciation suggests). 12 hours before i did predict that the score would be 1-18 so that was the benchmark to bear in mind if you’re thinking we did very badly as actually I was quite pleased (all things considered!)
Elvi’s mascot magic was working well tonight as David lined up against the much improved James Singh. I though Dave may be in for bit of a tonking, but not a bit of it and I think I can save a lot of time with the phrase that is quite traditional with reports on Davie C …. “and so to the 5th“