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Premier Squash League 2016 – Round 9

 

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Premier League Table Round 9

It’s STILL all to play for with one to go …

The penultimate round of the Premier Squash League was a tense affair for many of the twelve teams, with three Division A clubs  having chances of making the playoffs, four Division B clubs all within six points of each other, while some were aiming to avoid finishing bottom which could see them replaced next season.

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Mathieu Castagnet Champion Canary Wharf Squash Classic $70K

Winners at the 2016 British Nationals

February 15, 2016 Leave a comment

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DLWE (Kelvin Financial Planning) v Whitecraigs RFC – Away (Match Report) 11th January 2016

January 11, 2016 6 comments
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Spot the squash player – Dog or Doug!

You know when you come back after Christmas and you think that the first match will be okay as everyone else is in the same boat as you having eaten and drunk too much all through the festive period? Well this was nothing like that!

This was a real tough one for us in the first half (when we only sneaked a 3-2 win). This time we were missing our No.2 and so everybody had to play up one position which ultimately meant carnage……..for our team!

Still at least we got an early start and we also had 2 courts. On at number five was David Craig and he played Aberdeen University’s Alex Ross (will be interesting to see if West Squash enforce the “You have to play 3 matches in the 1st half” rule!!). The 1st game was a real hum-dinger and it finished 21-19. Both players had their chances, but Alex eventually came through to clinch it. In the second game Alex really got into his stride and Dave didn’t volley well enough, so the game began to slip away from him. The 3rd was also close and we almost secured a crucial team point, but it wasn’t to be (or not to be!).

I noticed that the ball was a bit strange and found out that it wasn’t the normal Dunlop one, so I soon asked for a change of ball. I went on the other court and played at No.2 against Ewan Hearns and was out of the starting blocks like ‘s*** off a shovel’ and secured the golden team point. However after that Ewan woke up and won the next 3 easily! (although I had a sniff in the 3rd?!?!).

Next up was Joe McDonald against Harry Anderson. Harry has got all the shots these days so I advised Joe just to do as much as he could to keep in the match. I didn’t see much of the match as I was on court, but he must have done this quite well as he appeared to be in every game. I joined it late on in the 3rd with Harry 2-0 up – however Joe was 10-6 up -game ball. Unfortunately he couldn’t capitalise on the lead (especially painful was one ‘tinned’ drop, were the whole crowd groaned in sympathy) as Harry dug in. In the end Harry won on a tiebreaker and so three more points to the Rugby Club.

Next on was ‘The clash of the Dougies’ with Dougie Macmillan against Dougie Emery (as I realized when I said “Come on Dougie” halfway through the 1st game). This was 3 easy points to Dougie – t’other Doug had been up all night studying for an exam and I’m not sure he had played much over the festive period, so no real surprise. Three more points to Whitecraigs.

Last on was Craig Valente Wallace v Andy MacBean. These guys had an exciting 3-1 last time so this could have potentially been a real tight one. But it wasn’t to be tonight as Craig never really got going and (I believe) personal circumstances meant we didn’t see the best of him tonight. So The final three points to the Rugby Club.

So off to the bar for veggie chilli for Ewan and I and ordinary chilli for everyone else to celebrate the 1 point gained tonight (down 13 on last time!).

We need a big push in the next few weeks to capitalise on the great start we made last year.

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PSA Squash World Tour – shot of the year 2015

December 31, 2015 Leave a comment

DLWE (Kelvin Financial Planning) v Giffnock 1 – Away (Match Report) 9th December 2015

December 15, 2015 Leave a comment

003A real tough match on Wednesday against top of the table (and 2014/15 champs) Giffnock 1 (it was a task akin to Bournemouth going to Chelsea! Except they played nothing like Chelsea and we played nothing like Bournemouth!)

On first on was Joe McDonald against Patrick O’Sullivan at No.5 (Patrick has already played against us for the 2nd team…. at No.2!). I will gloss over the first game and definitely won’t mention the granny (!) – but after that Joe did really well by dragging Patrick into his game. So much so that he almost nicked the 3rd game and only lost 16-14

I (Jason Broadberry) went on next against Owen (Haddaway – baby don’t hurt me) Hadden at No.3. This was a bit of a non-game as I suspected it might be. I tried to play a lot straighter as that was the only thing that was keeping me in the rally (but only by a few shots per rally). I could go into all the technical reasons that Owen is much better than me but needless to say I got chopped 3-0 (Haddaway hurt me!).

Doug went on next against Naill Morris at No.5 and played really well in patches, including nicking the 2nd game (a team point is gold dust tonight). It was good to see him turn it up this week, having said that he played rubbish in patches as well! But then I can hardly talk as I was much worse! Still he was really up against it as Naill has only lost one game in about 3 years! (I remember the day Naill – you could be like me in a few years! Remember inside every old person is a young person wondering what the f*** happened!)

Next up was Jason Lang against James Singh at No.2 and as they went on court Owen said to James ‘and you can put your fishing rod away if I’m marking as well!” – he didn’t!

This was always going to be a tough one as both players are young and can get anything – and so it proved. James got the first, but only because of a couple of mistakes at the business end of the game (and a stroke on game ball) and then went 2-0 up with some good tactical advice (and another stroke on game ball). Jase came back in to win a lung busting 3rd, but James had plenty left to win the match 3-1.

Craig went on next at number one against Stuart George. He played particularly well in the first game as Stuart was slightly off the pace, and he managed to sneak this one. After that I felt that Craig lost a little bit of belief. Don’t get me wrong Stuart really stepped it up, but I felt Craig didn’t really take the momentum of the first game into the rest of the match. Having said that he did very well to secure another team point so fair play to him, but Stuart was ruthless for the rest of the match and won 3-1.

Well all of our team disappeared in a steady stream, so it was left to me to talk to the Giffnock lads over about 20 pizzas! James Singh had 4 chips for dinner and was completely full! Whereas Owen and I had about four pizzas each! And you’ll never guess who was the only one to have a beer all night!

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DLWE (Kelvin Financial Planning) v Strathgryffe – Away (Match Report) 18th November 2015

November 19, 2015 Leave a comment

westsquashsitelogo1At 3pm today I was in sunny Spain having a relaxing time on the beach, but just aPicture2 few hours later I battled my way through Storm Barney (when did we start naming storms?) to reach Strathgryffe a little late, at around 7.15pm – but it turns out I was very early!

First up tonight and starting early (as he had to leave early) was Joe against Dave at number five. When I arrived the pair were having some humongous rallies and I thought this must be really close. However I soon learned that they were just playing a friendly as Joe had already won! Well he obviously wasn’t that keen to get away! Still 3 points on the board for us!

The number 4s went on next as Doug took on Graham Proud. I had never seen Graham play before and was impressed with his range of shots. This wasn’t one of Doug’s finest games however and he was well beaten.

My opponent still hadn’t turned up so next on at No.1 were Craig against Martin Woods. This was an interesting game as it appears that Craig is now in a position to really challenge Martin. I had the pleasure of marking this one and I said to both players before they went on “Call your own pickups and don’t moan at my decisions” Craig replied that he could only do one of these requests so I would have to pick!

This game was all about whether Craig could put enough physical pressure on Martin to tire him out. After the 1st I was sure he could, but when Martin came back and won the 2nd things were not quite as certain. However Craig knuckled down and really made Martin work harder and harder as the match progressed. It was soon obvious that Martin didn’t have the legs to run all of Craig’s rallies down. So a good 3-1 win for Craig – although neither man seem to want to take the last point and in the end it took an amazing fluke from Craig to secure the match (I would be inclined to give Craig MOTM again this week).

Still no sign of my opponent so on at No.2 was Jason Lang returning to his old club against Ross (Red) Lawrie. Jason has been playing very well recently and so I thought he would be too strong for Ross. But squash constantly surprises you and Ross was playing brilliantly and his range of shots was amazing. Every time Jason went cross-court, Ross was on it in a flash and often volleying away a winner or playing some ridiculously good shot!

So could Jase keep the ball to a good length and straight? Well at 2-2 in games it appeared that he couldn’t do it often enough; so now it was anyone’s game! Ross was putting away all services on the volley time after time and Jason was struggling to straighten the shots, so consequently Ross was dominating the ‘T’ and putting Jason’s cross-court returns away. It was all very close in the end (about 10-10) and it was a shame that the match finished on a stroke, but there you have it and Ross fully deserved the 3-2 victory. MOTM to Ross for them I would say.

Still no sign of my opponent Dave McCormack at 9:05pm – however I was told that he was on his way direct from work. We eventually started around 9:30pm and I was told later that we finished just 12 minutes later. I won 3-0 quite comfortably although the last two rallies in the 3rd game were particularly tough.

So I went for a shower, but Dave just put his clothes on and went back to work (well that’s the first for me in 35 years of league squash!).

The pizzas were even later than Dave! But they were worth waiting for especially the vegetarian one! We chatted all things squash and what could be better than that for a Wednesday night out!

And later, when I did that Facebook thing to see what the main words that I used on Facebook this year were, I don’t think anyone will be too surprised to see the results!

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DLWE (Kelvin Financial Planning) v Hamilton 1 – Home (Match Report) 28th October 2015

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I’d organised 6:30 PM starts for Doug and I against Hamilton last Wednesday, so obviously the match started about 7:15 PM! To be fair traffic is a nightmare about our club at match time and the Hamilton guys had to fight their way through the M8 traffic to boot.

Doug eventually made it on first against Chris McGeady and I went on around the same time against Allan Mackay so I missed a lot of Doug’s match. However he appeared to dominate from the word go it appears and won his match 3-0 by keeping it simple and not letting Chris in for a moment.

After our previous ding dong battles in the past couple of seasons I personally was really hoping not to have to pay Calum Philip again (!) so was delighted to hear that he’d challenged his way up to No.2 for this match. Like Doug, I also won 3-0 but my score line flatters me somewhat. Don’t get me wrong I thought I played really well and I was trying to mix it up against Allan. However I was lucky to win the third from 8-2 down, and in fact I was worried throughout the match that it could have gone either way at any time (including at 12-12 in the 2nd!). Win in three don’t lose in five as my old man always used to say to me (I can’t believe I’m quoting my dad! He’ll not let me forget this!)

Next up at No.5 was Joe McDonald v Stephen Healy and this was a real tough one. Joe took the 1st game 11-9 but it was nip and tuck all the way. And it only got tighter from there on as the 2nd and 3rd game games were even closer and Joe unfortunately lost both of them 10-12. Stephen was really tricky to play and it was very difficult to predict his next shot. The 4th game was much easier for Stephen and he won it 11-6 as Joe tired. But an excellent tussle and a 3-1 win for Hamilton.

Jason Lang took to the court next against Calum Philip. Calum apparently was apparently equally as relieved not to play me as I was not to play him! However it was out of the frying pan into the fire as he took on t’other Jason, who is very much in form. Having said that at 1-1 Calum was playing really well and crashing his normal shots all over the court and normally in the nic! However Jason managed to regain control and took the 3rd and 4th games by getting excellent leads in both and despite comebacks from Callum he had just too much of a lead

Last on was Craig Valente-Wallace v Kenny Boyle at No.1. No Craig is loving his tough matches this year so it was no surprise that this one was going the whole way!

An excellent 1st game for Craig was followed by a great comeback from Kenny as he went 2-1 up in the match. Craig clawed back the 4th to set up a grandstand finish on the 5th.

Both men must have been very tired, but I suspect that Craig didn’t realise just how tired Kenny was becoming. Despite this Kenny gave it everything in the 5th and came home with a 3-2 win. However I would have liked to see Craig really make Kenny work in the 2nd and 3rd games and then see if the 5th went the same way. Obviously we will never know and fairplay to Kenny as he looks as sharp and determined as ever.

So another excellent 3-2 win for the team and it was just in time for baked potatoes for dinner. This will have taken Jason back to his Renfrew days – it certainly took me back as well! And it was good to see that the 4th team did not nick all the food this week!

I pointed my camera phone at Doug & Jase and said smile for the MOTM award guys, but I had it on ‘selfie mode’ obviously! (mind you Craig almost got it again this week). 002

DLWE (Kelvin Financial Planning) v Townend 1 – Home (Match Report) 21st October 2015

westsquashsitelogo1 Okay so the report is still late but at least it is earlier than last weeks! And with two weeks between the last match and this, I didn’t know what to do with myself. I sat on the couch last Wednesday and when the wife said “What’s on TV” I don’t think she appreciated the reply “Dust!”

Anyway Townend 1 came to this end of town last week (do you see what I did there!) and despite trying to get an early start none of the ties really matched up. First on at No.5 was Joe McDonald V Peter Shivas. Peter still looks ‘regal’ on court and it is great to see him still playing 1st division squash. He still has the ability to pull out a perfect length shot to the back of the court whenever he needs it, and ultimately this is why he won 3-0. He kept Joe to the back and even if the ball came back it was dispatched. Joe was disappointed with his performance and his racket got the full brunt of his frustration and almost my head; however I thought Peter dominated well and didn’t really let Joe get his foot in the door.

Next on court were the No.1s as Craig Valente Wallace took on Rory Stewart. I don’t think Craig really believed he could win this one, so he must have surprised himself because he played well. Every game was tight and the first two were tie-breakers (the 1st to Rory and the 2nd to Craig). I thought Craig was really in the match and a few more lucky breaks (and a little bit more belief) and who knows, as the 3rd and 4th games only had two points in each of them (9-11 9-11). Unfortunately Rory won them both and so took the match 3-1.

So we were 2-0 down and would need to win every other tie.
Doug took to the court next against Scotty (Shabana) Bradford! This match was hilarious as Scott is a real character on and off the court. Every time he did the splits I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry! Or Cry with laughter!! It was a great 1st game and Doug was fortunate at 11-11 to bring home the last two points. However after this he seems to have picked up as the next 2 games were reasonably comfortable. So the comeback was on with Doug’s 3-0 win at No.4

The No.2 pairing was on next as Jason Lang played Ross McHoul. I didn’t know how to call this one and thought it could go either way. And do you know what? It did! Unfortunately I didn’t see it, as I had to go on court myself.

I was playing at No.3 against Ross Allan. As I went on court the heat hit me which was very unlike our courts. I think this suited Ross as he proceeded to give me the run-around! We traded games, Ross winning the 1st and me the 2nd etc until we reached the 5th (I obviously won’t mention the game point in the 4th, when Ross declared my ball was a double bounce and walked off the court – slipping the referee a tenner as he went – with me looking mystified and waiting to serve! I definitely won’t mention that!).
Anyway by that time, the news was that Jason had won his match at No.2 – and so at 2-2 in matches and Ross and I at 2-2 it made the 5th a bit spicy!

Fortunately for me I got Ross on the end of a really long rally, early on in the 5th and after that I found the going much easier. 6-0 became 9-3 and I knew I was going to be tough to beat from there. So a fortunate 3-2 win for me and the match was secured (hold on did I win that match on fitness!).

Well what a team come back! And talking of come-backs it was ‘good’ to see the pasta-bake back on the menu for dinner (everyone seems to hate it except me).

Most of the players had disappeared by the time I made it to the table, maybe they didn’t fancy my chat! So it just left Doug, Jason and myself to decide on Saturday 12th December for the Christmas night out – Craig is banned after getting me too drunk last time!!

To see all DLWE reports  click here

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Harrow at The 2015 CLIC Sargent PSA Squash Classic

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