R1: Nottingham fall short at Duffield

Benz Bavarian Duffield vs Air-IT Nottingham

Mark Fuller reports

The first fixture of the season and Air-IT Nottingham were heading to the league champions and local rivals Duffield for what on paper looked like it would be a difficult match.

5 – Millie Tomlinson (3) vs Hana Ramadan (0) 11/9, 11/8, 11/9

Local star Tomlinson made life difficult for debutant Air-IT Nottingham Hana Ramadan early on but in the end only just closed out the first game 11/9. Ramadan has just joined Nottingham University studying physiotherapy “it feels like a new beginning coming to England, I am very excited to part of the University and the Air-It Nottingham team”.

In the next two games Ramadan fought hard and found winners at important times but on her home court Tomlinson proved to solid taking the 2nd and 3rd games 11/8 and 11/9 to take the match 3-0. “This is just the beginning for me” said Ramadan.

4 – Ashley Davies (2) vs Matthew Broadberry (3) 7/11, 11/8, 13/15, 11/6, 7/11

Matthew Broadberry was another Air-IT Nottingham debutant who has just joined Nottingham University. Not overawed by the occasion Braodberry started well taking an early lead in the first. Davies fought back but it was to late, first game to Broadberry 11/7.

The next three games were all tight including a mammoth 3rd that Broadberry took 15/13. After a tight start in the decider Broadberry opened up a lead to 6-3 only for Davies to once again fight back. In the end it was a dogfight which went Air-IT Nottingham’s way to level the tie 1-1.

3- Richie Fallows (2) vs Mark Fuller (3) 11/5, 11/6, 7/11, 7/11, 11/8

When these two players met in PSL last year the Nottingham man Fuller emerged victorious 3-2 in a brutal encounter but with Fallows now ranked at 65 and Fuller at 132 this match was always going to be a tight affair.

In the first two games though it looked to be going comfortably the way of the higher ranked Duffield man as he raced to a 11/5, 11/6 2-0 lead. In the next 2 games Fuller played controlled squash to find his way back into the match with both games going Air-IT Nottingham’s way 11/7. In the 5th Fuller led 6-3 but it was not enough of a lead to finish the match with Fallows coming back well to win the 11/8. 2-1 to Duffield.

2- Declan James (1) vs Chris Fuller (3) 11/9, 5/11, 7/11, 8/11

In the first game of the match it was scrappy squash with both players struggling to control the ball, the game went Duffield’s way 11/9.

From then on Fuller managed to gain control of the match taking the next three games 11/5, 11/7, 11.8 with some superb controlled squash. “I played well” said the Nottingham man “but I think he was tired from the tournament he played at the weekend”. 2-2 in the tie and all down to the no.1’s.

1- Chris Simpson (3) vs Eddie Charlton (0) 11/7, 11/6, 11/9

The Duffield no.1 and player of the season Chris Simpson started well against the Air-IT Nottingham talisman Eddie Charlton taking the first game 11/7. The match was a close contest with both players aiming to control the game with tight shots rather than power. The second game went the same way as the first with Simpson going 7-4 up before closing out the game 11/6.

In the 3rd Simpson came out of the blocks well going 8-1 up before Charlton changed his game and began a fight back. The Nottingham man made it back to 8-4 and then 9-10. It looked like he might just make it back into the match but going for a precise serve on match ball that went out gave the game to Simpson 11/9 and the tie to Duffield 3-2.

Despite the defeat Air-IT Nottingham finished the fixture with 8 points considerably better than this time last year where they only picked up 2. It has been a good start to this years campaign. Air-IT Nottingham play Pontefract in their next fixture at home on the 27th of October, email info@fantasysquash.com for more information.

Mark Fuller