Racketball 1 take on Nuffield 1
With our captain sidelined with an knee injury & our #1 player away, we travelled with some uncertainty into deepest Surrey to play Nuffield.
Tony Power had warned about the “dodge” heater in his car, so Ashtead Racketball arrived at reception looking like an artic expedition. Perhaps this is why we were greeted with some fluffy white towels, were shown to the changing rooms, via the impressive gym & eventually to the courts...were they just trying to warm us up?
Ant Staples was our lead player & was introduced to Neil Frankland, development director for squash in Surrey & #1 player for Scotland at The Home Internationals! Ant gave it everything & got close on all his games but it was a tough ask. 0-3 to Nuffield.
Tony was up next against a millennial at #2 who seemed to reach all corners of the court in 2 strides. Again no lack of effort & some incredibly long rallies but there was a sense the home player had some extra gears. Another 0-3 to Nuffield.
Steve Axford was next at #3. After practising all week with a double dot ball, the Axe was well prepared & it showed. Boasts were picked up & the trade mark drops were coming off. Unfortunately just a few errors let the Nuffield player in & whilst close again, Nuffield walked off court with another 0-3.
Finally I took on the Nuffield club manager,Steve. The warm up was already competitive with Steve pinging shots all over the place. However I must have picked up some luck from playing Baz 'Luuucky' Kilminster in the week as I had more nicks than M&S! 3-0 to Ashtead & off to buy a lottery ticket.
Drinks in the bar inevitably turned to golf with all four Ashtead players regularly playing the club's society golf days. After a round of 'what courses have you played?', Steve's opponent let slip he was a member at Beaverbrook Golf Club . Perhaps still a little stunned that here was someone who had paid a few £100,000's to join this club, I blurted out the first thing that came into my head about Beaverbrook - "it certainly looks a stunning course from Tyrrells Wood, our chairman is a chauffeur at Beaverbook!", sorry Mike.
Next Racketball match is this Friday 19th January at home v Surbiton starting at 7:30pm.