The whole season seemed to be building up to this match. The stakes were huge. Winning meant promotion to the premier division and progress to the quarter finals of the BUCS championship, a feat that had never been achieved by a Newcastle squash team.
Fresher sensation Dave Daly asserted himself early in his match, dominating the court and dictating the pace from the off. The youngest member of the team showed great composure and maturity on his way to securing a comfortable 3-0 victory. Club legend Sam Smith seemed to show no nerves and produced his trademark squash from the first point, attacking the front corners with delicate drop shots and pinpoint volleys. Each game went down to the wire but Sam used his experience in the business end of each to claim a convincing 3-0 victory.
1st team captain Jack Hunter showed his nerves in the initial encounters and found himself behind in the first game. He settled down quickly though and began exerting severe pressure on his opponent, forcing him deep into the back corners, opening up the court for some timely winners. Jack took the first game and the next two followed in a similar manner.
“1st team captain Jack Hunter showed his nerves in the initial encounters and found himself behind in the first game”
The longest serving member of the team and club legend Mikey Collins was next on court. He struggled to take the initiative in the first game and his opponent capitalised on a few loose balls to win the first. Early in the second game however, Mikey showed his superior fitness and began to take the ball earlier forcing his opponent around the court. He took the second game and the next two followed quickly leading to a 3-1 victory for Collins.
Michael Mackay, the number 1 player from Newcastle had a brutal match. His opponent took a 2-0 lead and Mackay was on the ropes, desperately retrieving balls from all corners. He changed his tactics in the third and began to vary the pace and use his volley to greater effect. He clinched the next two games and set up a final showdown in the fifth. Points were quickly exchanged as both players began to feel the effects of over an hour on court. Mackay showed his class at the end took the final game, concluding a magnificent day for the first team. A resounding 5-0 win for Newcastle.
Thanks must go to the coaches and support staff in Newcastle and to Ryan Doran for his exceptional leadership and organisation as club president.
President Ryan Doran later added “I’m absolutely delighted that everyone’s hard work has paid off, and I look forward to being a serious contender in the Premier League next season”.
“Newcastle travel south to Birmingham in the hope of keeping their dream alive”
In the next round of the cup, Newcastle travel south to Birmingham in the hope of keeping their dream alive. The team have already become the most successful Newcastle squash team in terms of their cup run, and will be hoping to make it into the semi-finals.
A strong Birmingham team stand in their way, currently third in the Premier Upper division.