Premier Squash League returned to Nottingham this week as University of Nottingham took on Birmingham in a star-studded encounter, at the David Ross Sports Village.
A recognisable face in the Nottingham side, Coline Aumard, opened proceedings against Birmingham’s, Katie Malliff. Coline comfortably took the first match, 11-2 as her calm control worked favourably. After the first game loss, Malliff upped her game and the game had to be played in twelve points where by Malliff took the win meaning it was all to play for in the final game. Another closely contested game finishing in 12 points Birmingham took the first point of the evening.
Next up was UoN Sport Scholar, Adam Auckland, with a large amount of supporters from the university squash team it’s fair to say Adam was a crowd favourite of the evening. The physiotherapy student dominated Birmingham’s, Jack Turney to win 11-11, 11-3 and put Nottingham back into the game. Commenting on the game Adam said, "I was injured most of last year so it's nice not to have to think about that anymore. It feels great to be back and winning!"
The one to watch, Declan James vs Joel Makin was next up on the all-glass court. Both high quality players who broke into the top 20 in the world in 2019. Competitive from the start, the first game consisted of long impressive rallies and finished in 12- 10 to Nottingham’s Declan James. In the next two games Birmingham fought back to win 11-5, 11-7. This made the overall evening score, 2-1 to Birmingham with two games to go. Post-match Declan James said, "It was a great game of squash, 3 really good quality games. It's good to start the season with a tough match like that."
Returning to Nottingham’s PSL team, Millie Tomlinson was next up against Birmingham this was her old PSL side. Millie was playing against Belgium No.1, Nele Gilis, the two had met recently in the Irish Open final where Gilis had been victorious. Glis took the first game finishing 11-5. The Nottingham side, supporting Millie’s return, provided great support into the second game. Gilis remained in control of the second game to take the point and secure the overall win for Birmingham, 11-6.
The final fixture was Nottingham favourite, Nick Matthew vs Birmingham’s Josh Owen. Matthew’s experience shone through the fixture and he comfortably took the win in two games, 11-4, 11-4. Nick said "It's not easy playing last after a defeat but I knew, for the sake of the season, every point is important."
A home defeat was not the start that the Green and Gold had wanted, but there were promising signs during the 3-2 defeat to Birmingham, which can be built upon ready for the upcoming fixtures.
For more information on Premier Squash League click here.
Next home fixture for University of Nottingham is December 10th- tickets will be available closer to the time.
Posted on Wednesday 16th October 2019