Melbourn 1 vs Luton & Dunstable 1
Weds 21st August
Melbourn won 12-1
The last match of the summer for the 1sts saw us take on bottom side Luton 1sts.
In a reversal of the normal reverse order of team matches, we started with the top strings, which was Chris S against Sean Davies. Chris was quickly into his stride, stretching into corners and popping back whilst Sean was being forced into more desperate retrieves. The initial run of points was eventually ended but Chris won the opener by a distance. The next two saw Sean slowly adapting to the level he required to compete, gaining more points each time but Chris was never seriously troubled as he won 15-3, 15-6, 15-9.
Next on was Mark O (2) against Antony di Blasio. Mark knew the weather was going to adversely affect his breathing so went out all guns blazing in the first, running away with it. Antony admitted afterwards that he was worried about being bageled! Game two went the opposite way, Mark’s all-out-attack resulting in early errors. A deficit really wasn’t where he wanted to be, and though he clawed it back late in the game to earn a game point at 14-13 this went by the wayside and Antony levelled up.
Mark tightened things up in the third, taking a slightly more patient approach that saw him take charge again and having refound his feet cruised through the fourth in complete control for a 15-4, 14-16, 15-11, 15-5 win.
The final string of the evening pitted Jan B (3) against 15-year old Sophia John. It was immediately apparent that Sophia hit a very clean ball, especially on her backhand on which she has excellent technique. However Jan caught her out repeatedly in game one by breaking up the rallies to go short. Sophia began to anticipate this in the subsequent games, and it took Jan a while to adjust resulting in closer games. Indeed if he hadn’t starting going deep from short balls late in the third Sophia might have claimed that one, but the adjustment worked as Jan closed it out 15-6, 15-9, 15-11.
And so the season ended. For us at least. As things stand we are currently second in the table, but many of the other teams have two, three, four matches results to come in either due to overdue scores, a round of fixtures still to be played or re-arranged matches from earlier in the summer. Third or fourth is the realistic guess where we will finish. That will do.
Win-loss records for the teams
Chris Shaw: 7-0 (21-1 in games!)
Malik Bilen: 0-1
Mark Oppen: 3-3
Aidan Hird: 1-0
Kate Bradshaw: 5-7 (4-2 on 3-2’s!)
Jan Brynjolffssen: 5-8
Chris Fowell: 3-1
Matt Walker: 2-1
Skipper Jan summed things up as “Pretty good”