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Chanel VAS Champs 6-11th March in Wimbledon- get you tickets before they’re gone!

February 26, 2022 Leave a comment

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Match Report 9th February 2022 v Giffnock (away) – West Squash Division 1

February 10, 2022 Leave a comment
M.O.T.M.

Giffnock are 2nd in the Division so this was going to be a tough one tonight and so it proved!

When I arrived I met Stuart Pitt who said we were playing each other tonight as he munched a box of pasta. Obviously carb loading for a tough 5 setter against me as he’s heard about how fit I am (I’m only one vowel away from being ‘fit’!)

Talking of which, the battle of the heavyweights was on first, as Ollie (Millen) took on Mark Coyle at No.5. Mark obviously loves the home courts and Ollie got involved in playing his game a bit too much early on to lose the 1st game. However, when he slowed it down, he had much more success and maybe should have picked up a team point right there. Unfortunately, Ollie narrowly lost the 2nd game 13-15 and the match slipped away after that 3-0 to Mark and a good performance.

I was talking to Garry Blanchflower and Kenny ‘penalty point against ‘ Hardy in-between games and as the insults were flying and they told me I was rubbish, I told them both, “I used to be Jason Broadberry you know!”

I went on next and Stuart had obviously changed his mind about playing me, as I was now up against Ben Mazzucco at No.2. I remembered that he liked to boast (a lot), so I thought, ‘be ready for that!’ Unfortunately, I didn’t reckon on how well he did it, as well as the great drops (and many other shots). The bottom line is that he was far too good last night and won 3-0. I think I’d have to play him a few more times just to work out what the hell was going on! Mind you he’s not lost many in the league this year, so what can you do!

Next up was Chris (Murphy) v James Singh – a lot of tough matches for Chris this season against guys that are playing full time. However, Chris is so difficult to read on court and he can always create problems in every match. This time it was game 2, when at around 8-7 you could see that Chris could sense the finish line! Slightly helped by a 50/50 game-ball ‘call’, he walked off court at 1-1 leaving James to argue the call with the ref….. Ollie! (Nae chance!!).

Normal business was resumed after this (although the 3rd was close) and James won the next 2 games to take the match 3-1

At No.3 Cammy (Colquhoun) and Stuart Pitt claimed the court next. Hamish was a bit annoyed about this as he’s turned up especially early (for him) tonight at 7.20pm!!! So he used the time to nip home and get a change of clothes and a towel, which he hadn’t brought with him! (Ollie’s influence is definitely rubbing off on him).

Well Cammy and Stu would obviously be on for about 2 hours anyway, right? Wrong! Tonight was Stuarts’s night and he had a point to prove on his home courts. Cammy tore around the court as usual, but Stu was in control to take all 3 games (3-0). Cammy needs to regain his determination for not letting the opponent dictate too much, but after he conceded that he was ‘happy with the run’, he asked if I’d meet him in the park and throw a frisbee for him to chase sometime!

Hamish (Buchanan) and Neill Morris were on last at No.4 and this was a great ‘age v youth’ contest (Naill is really old!). Hamish upset Nial’s momentum to take the 1st game, but the experience was turned on in the next 2 and so Hamish found himself 2-1 down. However a great determined performance in the 4th and 5th games turned things on it’s head and Hamish played an absolute blinder to win the match 3-2. The whole team, and travelling support, were impressed and we all agreed that this was the best he’d ever played, so we bought him a pint to celebrate (and the fact it was the first time he was ‘legally’ allowed a pint!). Lovely pizza and chips for dinner (posh ones obs as we were at Giffers!) and they even had Erdinger for me! But it was not long, before we were on our way back to Whitecraigs for a game of darts to commiserate our loss (and to be regaled with Ollie’s chat; that only got him in trouble a few times!) ……. Hamish’s team won the darts as well!


Match Report 2nd February 2022 v S.S.R.C. (home) – West Squash Division 1

Who’d have thought trying to get a squash team out in Glasgow when the re-arranged “Old Firm” match was on would be a good idea? So, we were massively stretched this week with six players missing from the 1st and 2nd teams alone!

S.S.R.C. were our opponents tonight and they had a full-strength team out (obviously not a Teddy bear or Celt among them!). First on was Ollie (who was desperate to watch the match) against Joe Ewan at No.3. – Ollie was getting his excuses in early with chat of a side-strain, which was causing definite internal bleeding and scarring!! Then he goes on court and win’s the first game! (no more sympathy!). His opponent, Joe, upped the physical pressure in the 2nd game and stormed it 11-3. Ollie’s side must really have been hurting as he said he would probably have to retire if it didn’t get much better – and unfortunately that’s what happened in the 3rd game – so Joe took the tie 3-1 by retirement.

At the same time as this match was going on, one of our 1st team debutants, Peter (Meulemans) was up against an on-form Jesse Mills at No.4. The match seemed very close 10-12 8-11 in the first two games, but Jesse took them both. Could Peter convert his chances to get a massive 1st team point? Well, a great performance in the 3rd game meant he did exactly that. However, Jesse shut the door in the 4th and won the match 3-1 – great team point though!

Our second debutante took to the court at No.5 as Jenn Saldana (normally a 3rd team stalwart) took on Brian Robertson. No surprises here as Brian was too experienced, but Jenn got better and better as the match went on 4-11 6-11 7-11 (maybe if it were the best of 9 she’d have sneaked the 5th!).

I was both looking forward to… and not looking forward to my match at No.1 v Ali Prott. I suspected that if he decided to play with all guns blazing, I’d probably only get a point or two in total! However, he didn’t do that, but instead ran me around until I sounded like a smoker with emphysema. Great fun and I definitely got one point on my own (an amazing backhand drop!). 3-0 to Ali and I look forward to following his squash career.

Last on was Cammy (Colquhoun) v Dan Wearing at No.2. I though Cammy could chase everything down and maybe sneak a game or two against Dan, however, he wasn’t at his meanest today and Dan played very controlled squash to win 3-0 (although at 9-3 up in the 3rd Dan was relieved to get over the line 12-10!).

So into the ‘Back Bar’ for pasta bake and garlic bread and the second half of the Old Firm match. Much like the squash, the locals didn’t look too happy with the score-line (although I think our fight was better!)


Match Report 26th January 2022 v Scoutstoun (away) – West Squash Division 1

Seems like we’re “Back 2 Squash” every other month at the moment, but last night saw us back to West League squash and not a ‘garden party’ in sight as we visited Scotstoun!

Ollie was complaining that he would be rubbish tonight as he’s just got the booster jab and his arm was really sore. He couldn’t lift it very high without extreme pain, so the whole team were very concerned, right up to the point we asked why (as a right hander) he didn’t get the shot in his left arm? Apparently, he did…so no further sympathy was forthcoming.

I’ve never played on the Scotstoun courts, so was looking forward to it (and apparently they are getting new courts in the not-too-distant future as well). It was great to see five ‘ex-David Lloyd West End’ players there, it was like old times (and most of them won their matches!).

First on tonight were the No.4s & 5s – and Scotstoun had young Robyn McAlpine at No.5 v Ollie (Millen) and at No.4 we had Hamish (Buchannan) v James Crowhurst. Ollie was well out of sorts, but take nothing away from Robyn, she played really well and did exactly what she needed to win all three games. Meanwhile Hamish and James (having had a massive 2-3 in the first-half) were inevitably going to have a hum-dinger! And so it proved, as it went to the fifth and both opponents were looking like they had ‘wander’d mony a weary fit’. However, Hamish got revenge tonight and just held on to win the last game 11-9. He’ll be able to celebrate his 18th birthday in style with that win in the bank – so the team are looking forward to getting our invites to the party soon (must have got lost in the post!).

Next on at No.1 was Chris (Murphy) v John Meehan and there was no massive surprise to see that an athlete playing full-time got the better of Chris. There were, however, some great rallies and quality squash to watch from both players, but there was only going to be one winner here (3-0 to John).

O.M.D.G. – Sandy McCluskey or Andy Niven

I was on next and there was a bit of chat beforehand about how Sandy (Niven) has been looking forward to this one. Excellent!! It wasn’t long into the first game that I remembered the game plan and managed to win the first, before Sandy turned things around to level things up 1-1. The rest of the match (minus ‘match- ball’) I was in control, but at 10-5 up Sandy suddenly turned the turbo boost on! The next few minutes made me very nervous as he made his way back to 10-10 and then had a game-ball of his own, but with a bit of luck I managed to sneak over the line for a 3-1 victory. Someone mentioned that Sandy could do with a haircut, but I reckon he looks a bit like that bloke in O.M.D. from the 80s!

So the match was tied at 2-2 and the No.2s went on last with Cammy (Colquhoun) v Finlay McGhee. At 1-1 I went for a shower and told the team that I’d be back for the 5th game (and guess what!). And so to the 5th with the whole evening’s match points at 11-8 to Scotstoun! Both players were chasing for all they were worth with the sweat dripping off them. A titanic battle with Fin using his short cross-court kill to great effect and Cammy was retrieving like a border collie, however, I think the main difference tonight was the court and Fin knew how to play it just a bit better than Cammy and he brought the match home 11-5 for a 3-2 win.

Well, you can’t win them all (15-8 loss) so as the traditional Scottish Burns Supper fare was served up (a ruby & pizza!) the guys loaded their plates and tucked in.

We were soon back on the expressway making our way back to Whitecraigs for a consolation beer in the newly re-opened “Back 2 the Back-Bar”. The chat on the way home was “restaurants to take your girlfriend to” and ‘Bread Meats Bread’ was the favourite with the very similarly-titled ‘Burger Meats Bun’ a close second, if it hadn’t shut 3 years ago!


Match Report 8th December 2021 v Strathgryffe (home) – West Squash Division 1

Last match of the first half and Strathgryffe came calling.

I got the early start this week and the flashing squash racket of Ross ‘Red’ Lorry awaited me. It was all out attack from point one and I had to implement “anti-serve return status” immediately, after Ross dispatched the first few into the nic! This was destined to be a quick match, with short rallies and so it proved – I think I was fortunate that Ross went for so much, as he also made a few mistakes and I managed to keep the lead in the individual games to win 3-0

Next on at No. 1 was Chris (Murphy) v Dave ‘Laminator’ McCormick – at first sight this looked a bit of a mismatch, but Chris was slow to get going and Dave played really well, so a tight 11-8 to Chris was followed by an even tighter 10-12 to Dave. However, after that Chris moved up a gear (from 1st to 2nd! 😊 ) and finished the match off 3-1. Really good point for Dave though.

Ollie (Millen) pulled rank on Hamish and stole the court next, to play Craig Wright at No.5. This was another good match up and although Ollie won the first 2 games they were both close. Craig got the vital lead in the 3rd with some great determined play and good volleying and snuck home, but Ollie took control of the 4th to bring home the match 3-1 on fitness! (no really!)

Hamish (Buchannan) finally got the court to play Scott Adams at No.4 next and at 23-23 in the 1st, he didn’t want to let it go! What a 1st game this was! Both players were feral in their desire to hammer the ball and win the game, but Scott just held on to win 25-23. Hamish changed his game to be in control to win the 2nd and Scott did much the same in the 3rd. Unfortunately for us it looked like Hamish didn’t believe he could win the last one and so lost 3-1. Entertaining match to watch however & M.O.T.M. to Scott!

Last up was Cammy (Colquhoun) v James Dare at No.3. Cammy looked in charge of this match and James looked a bit tentative going forward. However, when James was on the ball, he had Cammy doing quite a few court sprints (but then Cammy loves doing court sprints, so he was happy to chase and chase!!). In the end a reasonably convincing win for Cammy 3-0, but I could see a that he was disappointed that the match didn’t go on for an hour!

So up to the bar to find the rest of the team (doing not very much) and after a coldish shower we had chili & rice for dinner with a large triangular crisp thing which was excellent. So a 16-5 win and around a mid-table finish to the 1st half.

Happy Christmas and Hogmanay when it comes and looking forward to seeing the 2nd half (and the other half!).


Match Report 1sh Dec. 2021 Whitecraigs LT&SC away v Western (Div 1. West of Scotland Squash)

Vapor

An away match last night and Western are like a box of chocolates….. you never know what you’re going to get!

Martin Woods was there to greet us and he was playing No.4 tonight (yeah I know!), so he went on first v Ollie (Millen) and I went on at the same time at No.1 this week (no Chris) v Robert Adam. I’m not sure what happened in Ollies game except to say he got dispatched 3-0. He seemed to be playing better by the 3rd game, but no points this week. 0-3 down.

On the other court Robert and I were having a right old ding-dong. We’d largely decided to mark it ourselves as both of us agreed to disagree with a few of the decisions on offer. This made for a very pleasant game. Robert seemed in control in the 1st & 3rd games, and I nicked the 2nd & 4th on tie breaks to take it to a 5th (when I got out of the court after the 4th their No.3 (Ben) was waiting to go on assuming I’d lost! Bloody Cheek! 😊 ). However the last game was a step too far for me, so Robert won 3-2.

When I got back to the other court – gently fuming! – Cammy (Colquhoun) was 0-2 down against Scott Hay at No.2. I hadn’t seen the game, so I just told him what I would do against Scott and hoped for the best; bish-bosh he won the next two games, although with the scowl on his face that made him look like he lost them both! So between games, I told him to “bloody cheer up, as the match is yours to win……… and if you don’t win I’m taking your new Harrow Vapor away!” Another epic battle ensued, and Cammy still has his Vapor! (and the match cheered me up as well!)

I went for a shower and so missed the start of Hamish (Buchanan) v Ben Ramasubbu at No.3, but Hamish was 2-1 up and playing great when I returned. However, the very stylish Ben R used all his experience with 12-10 thrillers in both the 4th & 5th games to clinch victory from the jaws of defeat! Tough to take from Hamish, but I’m not sure he did much wrong, Ben just tied both his shoelaces at just the right times (for about a minute each time!) to give himself enough breath to sneak it! 3-2 win for Ben.

Last on at No.5 was our debutant Dave Simpson against veteran Kieran Pole. Nerves were a factor early on as Kieran took a 2-0 lead, but Dave was motoring by the end of the match and could easily have sneaked the 3rd game. If he had, he may well have ‘done a Cammy comeback’ – however Kieran just had enough to stop Dave using his hard-working game to gain that crucial foothold. 3-0 to Kieran.

So, Chinese takeaway for dinner and spicy noodles for me as the rest of the lads tucked into a about 20 other containers & bags. A strange seating arrangement at Western meant we all split up with our individual mountains of food, but we all thoroughly enjoyed the scran (and no one told me the result for the Merseyside derby so I was looking forward to seeing the footie when I got back. Although obviously not before a trip back to Whitecraigs for an Erdinger and Ollie regaling the car with all sorts of hilarious X-rated stories!)

So a 17-7 loss tonight, but a good hard match with three 3-2 results.


Match Report 17th Nov. 2021 Whitecraigs LT&SC home v Giffnock (Div 1. West of Scotland Squash)

November 18, 2021 Leave a comment
where does he get his energy?

Well there were no fireworks tonight and the result was just as you thought it might be against a Giffnock team on top of the West Squash Division 1 table, but none the less it was a great night out.

First on at No.1s was Chris (Murphy) v James Singh. This was a bit of a rammy and the first blow was traded by James with a racket in Chris’s face and this was closely followed by lots of bumping and barging. Chris returned the favour, with ball driven into James’s leg (a tad unnecessary) in the 3rd game. Overall, I’d say Chris managed to shake things up well, because I expected to see an exhibition of straight drives, volleys and control from James, but this was not to be. Despite this James won 3-0, but Chris has to be commended for forcing his game plan on the match and making the 1st and 3rd games really tight.

Next on I marked Hamish (Buchannan) v Ben Mazzucco. Ollie (Millen) had missed this court as he was faffing about looking for the less essential parts of any players equipment like ………. a racket, kit, and shoes! However, he managed to find his racket (in the bar obviously) and discovered his unwashed kit from last week – or by the stench, maybe the week before that! (both teams thought Ollie had left a ripe stilton in one of the pockets and were less than impressed by the lack of Febreze!)

Back on court with Hamish and Ben, it was great to see my old team-mate (Ben Mazz) tonight and his undeniable attacking style helped him throughout the match. Giffnock’s Stuart Pitt said to me “Did you teach him to play a boast every other shot when you were both at David Lloyd’s?” and he had a point (as I remembered sessions Ben and I had on the backhand boast). Ben won the match, by attacking with the boast (among many great shots) so it was a lesson well remembered! 3-1 to Ben.  

By the time I made it onto the next court to see Ollie’s game, he was 2-0 down against Niall Morris at No.5. However, when I watched the 3rd game, Ollie was really getting involved in every rally. I thought maybe Niall was trying to get away from Ollie’s fermenting kit, but actually Ollie was sticking in the rallies well (although he was hitting cross-court far too much). Niall “what’s a drop shot” Morris was moving the ball around really well himself and there were some great (and long) rallies where you just didn’t know if Niall was going to slot in another good length, or if he was merely going to hit one to the back!! 😊  

Ollie played well to pinch the 3rd game, but he seemed far too happy with himself at this point, so Niall finished things off a bit too easily in the 4th for my liking. But a good team point from Ollie 1-3.

Next on was Cammy (Colquhoun) v Stuart Pitt at No.3. Although it was really Cammy Pitt v Stu Colquhoun as both players’ styles, were a mirror of each other! This definitely had 3-2 written all over it!! So after the first game and a half I thought, I’ll play my match and come back to watch the 5th!

I was up against an old advisory in Owen ‘Haddaway’ Hadden and although he’s been better than me in the last 15 or so years, there was a time that I could beat him! And tonight was reminder of those days, as I wrestled a tight 3rd game off him and was close in the 4th, but ultimately Haddaway remembered “What is squash? Baby don’t hurt me, don’t hurt me no more!” – 3-1 to Owen (it always hurts!).

Straight back to the 3-2 match next door and what do you know, it was the 5th game and match ball! Niall was regretting taking the markers chair as his muscles were in atrophy, and apparently Cammy had a big chance at 9-8 up in this game, but could only find the floor with his drop! So a good 2 points to the cause and time to hit the back-bar for burgers and chips.

Someone had put an old Man City game on the telly (the Agueroooooooooooooooo! one) which was played in 2012 ….. during the day …….. and James asked if it was on live! Stick to squash big-yin! Just then there was large ‘clang’ on the floor as Ollie dropped the biggest name he could with his ‘pint with Neil Lennon’ story. Everyone was gripped as they’d never heard it before, well not in the past 20 mins anyway! Match result was 18-5 but it was against the Division leaders so could have been worse.


Match Report 27th Oct 2021 Whitecraigs LT&SC home v Newlands (Div 1. West of Scotland Squash)

October 28, 2021 1 comment

So, after two great results in the last two matches, we were up against the might of Newlands & Carlisle 1st team! Similarly, I felt for Preston North End up against the Mighty Liverpool in tonight’s footie; giant killing was always going to be a massive 3 pointer.

I arranged to play early against Fraser McCann – and he was ready to show me what life at No.2 was really like. First game ………. ‘chopped’. Second game – I slowed it down and confused Fraser for a few points, but ultimately it was ‘close, but no cigar’. However, I was amazing in the 3rd game and the 4th and the 5th …..… well I would have been if I hadn’t been chopped in the 3rd! (3-0 Fraser).

Next up was Chris (Murphy) at No.1 v Matt Bedwell. I didn’t see this, but I like to imagine that when Chris was fresh (i.e. in some of the first game) he was amazing and moved the ball like a young Jahangir Jase! Then when Matt wore him down, he moved the ball like a much, much older Jason. Then, by the end, he got tanked like a really old Jason ….. without his Argonauts! (3-1 to Matt!)

In the meantime, I was marking Hamish (Buchanan) v Vicky Bell on Court 1. Well earlier in the day, I though ‘Vicky will win this 3-0’, easily! However, Hamish went 1-0 up and then amazingly, 2-0 up! I would have to accept that although Hamish played well, Vicky was making 1 or 2 (or 10) uncharacteristic mistakes per game! However, during games 3, 4 & 5 there was some turnaround and normal service was resumed. Vicky went from ‘Tin-Tin’ to ‘Wonder Woman’, as she slotted the ball into every corner, to completely change the momentum. Hamish couldn’t get himself into a position to affect the result often enough and Vicky brought the match home 3-2.  

The last two matches, on at the same time, were Cammy (Colquhoun) v Mark Ford and Ollie Millen v Dave Fallis. I saw some of each match and it would be safe to say that either match could have been 3-0 to Newlands. However, Ollie fought really hard to strangle a game from Dave with some good match play in the 2nd – and Mark fought just as hard to deny Cammy his game. Cammy was unlucky not to pinch a game as he had Mark puffing at various points, but Mark was experienced enough to always stay ahead as to ensure a 3-0 win.

Burgers & chips for dinner tonight and my ‘double decker’ veggie burger was top scran! I asked for mayo with my chips and was told the closest they could get to mayo was brown sauce! Fortunately the closest they had to a pint of Erdinger was actually Erdinger (and they found the mayo!).

After most had left, there were just four of us to chat an uninterrupted flow of squash. We covered all sorts, like Shabana v Rammy – classy shots v amazingness – so who’s best? Gaultier – we all love you, but why are you so Gaultier? How to coach a backhand volley drop! Daryl Selby has a better technique than Peter Barker, so why didn’t he beat him more often? James Wilstrop has a better technique than Nick Matthew, so why didn’t he beat him more often? Being a pro squash player….. discuss! Asal – love him despite himself – or dislike him because of the way he behaves?!? It must have sounded like a foreign language to the bar staff!

You gotta love a Wednesday squash night out!! (and Liverpool won!).

So when I thought about playing Newlands earlier in the day, I thought, a giant killing or not, a ‘3 pointer’ would be a half decent result – but we got 4 points tonight ……… tough at the time, but I’ll – take that ……. and party! (Score 4-18)


2020 Manchester Open

September 13, 2020 2 comments

Black with Red trim

This Is So True!

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