The Premier Squash League descended on The Nottingham Squash Rackets club, last night for round five of the 2019/20 season. Nottingham’s line up was looking promising and ready to cause upset against last year’s runners up Team Pontefract- the only un-beaten team at this point in the season. Nottingham succeeded by winning the evening in a clean sweep 5-0.
Tinne Gilis was first up for Notttingham in her debut for the PSL team against Sarah Campion. Gilis got the evening off to a flying start as she confidently claimed the first point of the evening for Nottingham winning two games, 11-5 11-6. She commented on her debut Gilis said, "I was very excited to play PSL for Nottingham for the first time! It was a great start to the evening."
Next up was Nottingham legend, Nick Matthew vs rising start Patrick Rooney. The game was entertaining as the pair challenged each other with long competitive rallies that kept the crowd on the edge of their seats. However, Matthew’s experience shone through and he took the second point of the evening for Nottingham, 9-11, 11-8, 11-6. Commenting on his opponent, Matthew’s said,
“He is a player I rate very highly for the future of English Squash and World Squash. I had to get fired up to win that one. I wasn’t necessarily going to win that on just squash. I’ve had to use sort of all my experience and get in his head a little bit.”
Millie Tomlinson was up third with the Nottingham evening win in her sights. Playing against Canadian, Hollie Naughton, was going to be a closely challenged match as both are currently in the top 30 in the world. Naughton started the game at a fast pace that threw Tomlinson and Pontefract took the first game. However, Tomlinson came back and slowed the pace down to play into her advantage. Tomlinson is always a crowd favourite at home and the Nottingham crowd got behind her to help her get the third point of the evening for Nottingham. The scores were 3-11, 14-12, 11-6. Millie said, “It could have gone any other way. I think I was just on the edge of the seat as much as the crowd were.”
Richie Fallows was next up for Nottingham against 16-year old, one to watch, Sam Todd. Fallows kept the winning streak going for Nottingham as he won 2-1, games were 9-11, 11-1, 11-7. Commenting his performance Fallows said, “I had a good start but a few things took my concentration away and ended up losing the first game. But I came back strong, gained my concentration and won the match.”
With the evening already won, the pressure was off number one, Declan James. James was playing against Chris Simpson, who recently announced his retirement from the World Series. James showcased precision and skill in the first set as he walked away with an 11-1 win. Simpson was not going to go down easily and fought back in the second set putting James to the test by chasing his lead. However, James preparation helped him take the win in two games, 11-8.
The clean sweep for Nottingham has upset the Northern division and they now set their sights on remaining consistent to secure a semi-final spot.
The next Premier Squash League fixture will be on 7th January at the Nottingham Squash Rackets Club.
Catch the live stream for the evening here: https://www.facebook.com/UoNSport/videos/467838447249188/
Find out more about the Premier Squash League here: https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/sport/whats-on/premier-squash-league.aspx
Posted on Wednesday 11th December 2019