Internal Team League Oct 2023
It's not all about the food you know!!! Rediculous 5 ride the crest of a wave in the new ITL season
Well, it's that time again, as we kicked off the third ITL season last Friday night at Reigate Squash Club. A staggering number of members have signed up to participate this year, and forty three wonderful players turned out to represent their teams. An added incentive this year is the generous sponsorship of the event by Giggling Squid, who signed up to provide some sumptuous Thai food from their Reigate branch.
But first the squash! For those of you not paying attention, Rhythm & Blues managed to prise the Green Machine's tentacles off the virtual trophy last season, whilst Rediculous 5 and Mellow Yellows battled it out in the ocean depths. All teams signed wisely during the close season transfer window, and now re-entered the water with fresh hope and optimism.
Kicking off the new season was Stef Loucaides, that stalwart sea dog of the Green Machine, who took the match away from the Blues Caroline Linton in straight games. Meanwhile Colin Waite from the Reds was having a humdinger of a match against new Yellow recruit Alfie Champion, the latter pulling on his reserves to take the tie three games to two. Jerry Robson pushed the Red boat further out by defeating James Mace in straight games, whilst new boy Colin Woods took a tie for the Blues by beating Andrew Loftus, also in straight games.
Colin was quickly back on court, this time with racketball in hand, as with renewed porpoise he beat Alan Ellerbeck in straight games (excellent start for Reds this). Another new recruit, Sarah Denness, showed her lightning shark speed around court as she struck back for the Yellows by defeating Paul McKay three games to one. In another racketball match, a battle of buoys versus gulls saw Blues Mike Parsons defeat Mars Hatari, also three games to one. Returning to the ITL fray, young Tom Howarth struck another blow for the Reds by beating Trevor Ladd, another new recruit, in straight games.
Chris Lucas turned back the sands of time as he took another match for the Blues, by defeating new ITL player Chris Cable in straight games. In an all newbie tie, Gareth Glover, the latest member of Blues investment in youth, defeated Kevin Uphill in straight games. Meanwhile Warren Glover the elder, of the Yellows, was making waves by defeating Red stalwart Richard Allum, again in straight games. Simon Chatfield, returning for the Reds after a spell under the knife, was fully octo-pied in beating debutant Robbie Davies three games to one.
So half way through the contest, Rhythm Blues had a healthy lead over the Green Machine, whilst Rediculous 5 were having a whale of a time against Mellow Yellows.
Mike Parsons was back on court, this time with a squash racket in cut hand, taking on new Green member Connell Grogan. Mike took full oppo-tuna-ty in defeating Connell three games to two. Charlotte Fish (sometimes this stuff writes itself...) hit back for Greens by beating James Howarth three games to one. On another court, Ollie Dredge struck yet another blow for the Greens by putting Christian Harding in his plaice in straight games. Having come through last season undefeated, Christian was simply left to mullet over.
Special birthday boy Wayne Beglan was back on court with his old ITL nemesis Alan Taffinder. Alan was too razor sharp for the Old Man of the Sea, and took a scintillating match in straight games for the Greens. Connell Grogan, stepping in for a late no show, proved his worth to the Greens by defeating yet another Blue debutant, Tim Hatari in straight games.
A welcome return to the Yellow fold, Guy Stedman turned the tide of expectation by defeating James Reynolds three games to one. Meanwhile, old anenomes Tom Jenkins and Peter Yates, the latter making a long anticipated debut in the ITL, had a cracking close match, which Pete took late in the fifth. Andy Laurillard, flounder of the feast, finally managed to get on court, and struck for the Blues by defeating Olly 'the shed' Smith three games to one.
In another great match, Chris Stockman was taking on Ian Marshall, the latter taking a tight match three games to two. It was left to Ben Harris and Richard Campbell to provide the final showcase match of the evening, Ben taking the top seed match for the Reds in straight games.
(A court malfunction during the evening meant that one match was rolled over to the following morning, with Chris Thompson taking another straight games tie for the Reds by defeating Brandon Bratton).
So off to the bar where Clive Raynsford Smith and Roger Crabb (told you!) were busy serving drinks, and where in the galley Sarah Marrington and Lisa Pinggera had been slaving away all evening, serving up some exquisite Thai food, despite the exploding microwave, which had sunk to the depths. You're going to need a bigger kitchen, Sarah!
So what's the score, cap'n? Well, it was an extremely tight first round. Green Machine took their revenge on last year's victors, Rhythm & Blues, but only just, by 22 points to 21. But Rediculous 5 have inked their name at the top of the leaderboard by scuppering Mellow Yellow's boat 25 points to 15. It's going to be an epic season!
Next match is on Friday 17th November. You orca be there.