Player of the match: Ada
I like playing against Paces. For one, the sports centre at Yewlands has nice lines and a springy floor. Secondly, it’s quite cool, so the shuttle does not fly out the back. And thirdly, the team are all very friendly and play their matches in a competitive but social way.
In terms of who was to play where, I was umming and aahing for about 15 mins (more if you include my journey with Hannah). This was primarily due to the team debutant, Jarek, joining the ranks. Would I play him first pair with his often partnered Ada, or will I play him with levels specialist Hannah? Or would I go way leftfield and play Jarek/Ada as third pairing? Oh, the dilemmas of being a combined captain! In the end, I went for the above, and it all worked out ok!
So anyway, it all kicked off with three courts at our disposal. And what a trio of rubbers to start the match. They all went to three ends (and in fact were the only ones to go to three ends in the night). Ada and Eliza, having won the first to 13 were pipped in the second (22-20), only to regain their advantage and win the third (17). This was a cracking game against two very strong levels players. Rich was to partner the fresh faced Jarek. Having taken the first to 10, they were to lose the next two. Jarek was yet to find his best form of the night. Steve and Hannah lost the first to 18, but found some momentum and implemented some tactical switches to take the other games to 8 and 13. 2-1 Broomgrove.
Safe in the knowledge the no.1 Broomgrove supporter, Emily, was taking charge of the scorecard, Broomgrove really picked up their game in rubbers 4, 5 and 5. Hannah and Ada out manoeuvred opponents in a one sided rubber – 12-11. In Jarek and Steve’s games, the opposition played a little more on Jarek, who replied by playing some superb and consistent rallies. Another win in two – 7-13. Rich and Eliza then coolly dispatched the stronger of the Paces pairs to 11 and 11. 5-1 Broomgrove.
In the last 3 rubbers, Ada was to make it 3 out of 3 by taking her mixed rubber with Jarek (a promising partnership). Rich and Eliza took theirs in two. Finally, Hannah and Steve lost in two. 7-2 Broomgrove.
So Ada takes the player of the match for winning all three, including two tough levels and a mixed new partnership. She is closely followed by Jarek who made a very competent debut.
I managed to damage my knee in my rubber with Jarek and will be missing at club nights for a few weeks. But I chose a good match to injure myself, given tha we have now successfully won the first division unbeaten.