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It's that time of year again ... prepare to leave your friendships at the glass-backed door and battle your club mates to the ultimate prize Who will be our HBPRC Squash Champion for 2018?
Squash Superchamps 2018
If you are interested in playing in a Superchamps team this year can you please email squashVP@hernebayrackets.co.nz or put name on noticeboard at the club. The tournament will be held the week of 6th - 12th August 2018.
Please note you must have played three matches which have results showing in iSquash between 1 Jan and 15 June 2018 to be eligible to play in Superchamps
The cutoff dates are as per below
Member transfer cut off - June 7th
Grading list cut off - June 15th
Team entries close - July 5th
If you want more info please go to http://squashauckland.org.nz/Competitions/SuperChamps.
Senior club night gets underway from 6.30pm. New members are very welcome. Get to know some of our club members or set up a challenge.
Junior club night will run on Friday from 4-6pm. Jarrod and his team will get everyone on the court.
Sponsored by: Five Loaves Eatery
Join us for our very own Wimbledon fun doubles event, Saturday 7th July 1-4pm. Theme: Wimbledon Whites. Entry Fee: $10 (includes food & prizes)
Seniors, join us for some social and friendly match play on Thursday night from 6.30pm and/or Sunday afternoon from 1 to 4pm. New members are welcome.
Club night continues with match play between 4.30pm and 6pm. Please text David on 021476606 if you are wanting to register. Suitable for junior members who can rally, serve and score.
Peter Cross recalls a very special occasion.
A few months back an email was circulated to the committee offering us a package. An exhibition event where world squash number eight Paul Coll did his stuff against fellow Commonwealth squad member Lance Beddoes with other add ons like individual and group coaching sessions and shirts for auction . Were we interested? Is the Pope a Catholic?
The person who brought this deal to our attention was Matt Taylor who’s been responsible for bringing so many A graders to the club over the years but this offer topped everything. I ought to have known that volunteering to work on the 13th of each month would come back to bite me.
I arrived early, just after five, and Paul was already on court. He was coaching Riley who has been watching Paul Coll You Tube clips for ages and here he was on the same court. He must have thought he’d gone to heaven. Kylie McCracken, Riley‘s mum and club treasurer, was outside capturing the action on her phone maybe as evidence that it wasn’t a dream. Back in the sixties when I was Riley’s age I fantasized about playing in the same team as Bobby Charlton and George Best even though I couldn’t even get in the school team and that was about as near as most kids then and now get to be with a sporting great. At one stage Paul did one of those flash corkscrew serves I haven’t seen since Mike Weston left for Luxemburg. Later Paul had a session with Max another of our talented juniors and I watched some of it with Max’s dad from the balcony who pointed out that his son would listen to Paul far more than anyone else. Meanwhile Lance was putting some of our more experienced players through their paces.
The crowd entertainment started with a ‘local challenge’ where we put up our current champion, and volunteer barman, George Crossby. This volunteer barman was too busy to see more than two points of that match as he was serving drinks. But as you’d expect George played with the sort of flair and touch he’s able to produce even when injured.
Before the main event Matt Taylor said a few words with his customary panache. He’s known Paul for many years watched his ascent up the ranks and said how proud we all are of him. “We had Susan Devoy as a role model and now young players had Paul and Jolene King to look up to” Incidentally if only Dame Susan gave birth to girls rather than boys Herne Bay would have won the Cousins Shield last year and held it this. I didn’t see much of this game either but what I saw and feedback afterwards confirmed that it was a highly enjoyable contest that sparkled with lively banter and antics from both players not to mention quality rallies only top professionals can produce. At one stage Paul broke a string and asked for a replacement. Later he was given a junior tennis racket and even with this he was able to play a number of breath taking winners before reverting to a proper squash racket.
A few days after the contest was circulated I sent an email to fellow committee members suggesting I did a question and answer session with Paul and Lance to round off the evening. I didn’t hear anything. I’m always suggesting daft ideas and they usually get ignored. Then the posters appeared listing the attractions including a Q&A. I assumed that either someone had nicked my suggestion or, more likely, that person had thought it up unprompted. It’s hardly original. Then at the last committee meeting someone asked what I’d be asking. It was the first time I realized my offer had been taken seriously.
So we had a Q&A session in the lounge. The thing about interviews is that you know in seconds whether it’s going to be a walk in the park or wadding through porridge. And Paul is a breeze. He’s the sort of interviewee that makes interviewers look good. He’s happy to share secrets of his success: “It’s not one thing but hundreds” said how moving from Christchurch to Auckland and then to Amsterdam improved his ranking. Even he is surprised at how high he has risen: “Three years ago I would never have believed I get into the top ten.” I believe him when he claims his real desire to get in the world top eight is that it gives him a seeding and protects him in the early rounds of tournaments. Then there’s the training and fitness regime that includes two hours a day stretching. I’d already noted that he drank a small carton of coconut water when he came off court which suggests it requires the self discipline of a Trappist monk to achieve what he has. After a slow start there were a number of questions from the floor each given the same consideration and intelligent as ones I’d posed.
It’s worth considering Lance Beddoes role in the proceedings. He’s thinking about life after he finally stops playing professional squash. Clearly he sees a future in putting on exhibitions like this. On court and off he plays the foil to the crowd pullers. Adrian was telling a group of us that with more effort Lance could have beaten Jolene King the night before. But that’s missing the point: Lance’s role is to showcase the stars. Squash in New Zealand after the Commonwealth Games success and increased television coverage is on a high and Lance is just the guy to help make it even more popular.
I returned to the bar to help serve beer and wine to members and guests and more coconut water for our celebrity. Lance and Paul stayed up to the time the bar was closed. They went round and said goodbye to everyone that was still there. They may not come cheap but both give great value for money and we did make a modest profit on the night. They’d given us an experience we’ll never forget: mostly for the right reasons.
Squash & Tennis Rackets - 30% off, plus free replacement grip. Sales runs from Thursday 28th June until Saturday 7th July.
Any queries please call David Mustard on 021476606.
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