Mon 6th November
Melbourn won 18-7
The 2nds ended Peterborough 4ths 100% record in Division 4 on a night that feature many closely-fought matches.
It wasn’t looking good initially as Rob Davis (5) and Michael Easton (4) slipped two-love down against Pierre Caruso and Jack Wright respectively. Pierre was looking to break the game up to deny Rob rhythm, which worked for two games but as the home player increasingly tired, Rob found the pattern of depth then drop to pull a game back. The fourth was nip-and-tuck featuring many long rallies. It reached 13-all, but then two points for the home player (the latter one including both Pierre then Rob playing balls rather than calling clear strokes, whilst everyone on the balcony cringed!) saw Rob fall 8-15 12-15 15-10 13-15.
Meanwhile Michael had done well to keep his frustration in check and was turning the match next door around with solid, consistent play. He edged home in the third, then ran away with the fourth. An ease up at the start of the fifth combined with Jack putting in a concerted effort saw the home player build an early lead, but again this worked to focus rather than frustrate Michael, who overturned an 11-8 deficit winning seven straight rallies to come through 8-15 12-15 15-13 15-5 15-11.
Next to take to the court was Matt Walker (3) against Matt Morgan. Matt (Peterborough) won the opener, but our one soon levelled. Games three and four were extremely tight, with nearly every rally looking exhausting as both were fearful of going in short and giving court position away (watching on from being on the balcony was definitely preferably from being involved in this sort of match!). The players were basically out on their feet by the end, but it was Melbourn’s Matt who emerged happy after winning 11-15 15-7 15-13 15-13.
Next door, Jan Brynjolffssen (2) was taking on Sean Michelson. Jan led for much of the opening game, but saw that advantage whittled away at the death and had to grit his way through. A fast start to game two saw Sean’s head drop, and he gifted it away easily. The Peterborough player put that aberration behind him at the start of game three, and built a 9-4 lead at one point. However refocused effort from Jan turned it around to complete a mostly straightforward 15-13 15-3 15-11 win.
The winning bonus was in the bag midway through Nev Rimes opening game at top string game against Neil Needham, though neither player knew this of course. This one matched up two players with high racquet skills, with the key difference being Nev’s seeming preternatural ability to know where Neil was going with his shot, repeatedly volleying attempted winners! Nev also finished games one and two strongly, winning a string of points late on to turn narrow mid-game leads into comfortable claims. A slow start to game three saw Nev fall too far behind to recover (though a late game surge got him close), but game four brought a return to the Squash of the opening two, more straight, less cross, as Nev took it 15-8 15-10 13-15 15-11.
Melbourn 2nds sit third in the table at the moment, which is pretty congested at the top end. Peterborough lead the way on 116 points, Stamford 2nds are second with 114, Melbourn have 109 and Kimbolton 2nds are also involved, holding 94 but with a game in hand.