Squash win over fellow strugglers eases relegation fears

A win over fellow strugglers Sheffield Hallam helped to allay the relegation fears of the men’s squash team

The squash team, pictured here against Northumbria in January, have a BUCS cup final to look forward to on Friday. Image: Peter Iveson

The squash team, pictured here against Northumbria in January, have a BUCS cup final to look forward to on Friday. Image: Peter Iveson



York’s convincing 4-1 win against fellow strugglers Sheffield Hallam moves them further away from the BUCS league drop zone. It was a great team effort from the York side but some outstanding individual displays also aided the cause.

The injured Matt Brennan was up first against Sheffield Hallam’s Jake Byrne. His ankle was still obviously sore after his fall, and his opponent looked to be just as much a challenge as his apparently obstacle ridden driveway. It was a slow start from Brennan but some expertly assessed drop shots were helping to keep him in it. He was also successful in slowing the pace of the game so as to reduce the pressure on his ankle, but too many errors meant that he eventually lost the first game 17-15.

The second game wasn’t so close and Byrne took advantage of Brennan’s lack of confidence and ran away with it winning 11-4. With the third game looming the odds were stacked against Brennan but an inspired performance saw him take the game 11-6, which brought him back into the encounter. He then won the fourth 11-4 to take the match into a deciding game. With the momentum now with Brennan he came out playing some fantastic squash, moving his opponent all over the court at will and making some precise passing shots.

With the score at 8-1 it all got a little bit too much for Byrne who flung his racquet across the court. The newly bent racquet seemed to make a short term difference to Byrne’s game as he won the next few points, but in the end Brennan had too much ability and won the game 11-4 to see him victorious despite the swollen ankle.

Up next was York’s Matt Johnson against Robin Crease. Unfortunately it wasn’t Johnson’s day and his opponent took the first game 11-4. Crease was also in control of the second game and moved Johnson around the court well, not allowing Johnson a chance to get into the game after his initial good start. The third game saw Johnson dominated once again and he succumbed to an 11-4 defeat.

Dave Potter was charged with the task of putting York back in the lead as he went up against Max Ball. It turned out to be a thrilling game of squash, with both players making a number of extraordinary shots and managing to return some seemingly unreachable balls, which created some fascinating rallies. It was Potter who had the killer instinct though as he made some amazing shots such as an audacious back hand drop shot into the bottom left hand corner of the court, and the torrent of force with which he hit some of his others were too much at times for Ball.

He won the first game 14-12 and then the second 11-9. Going into the third game Potter continued his great form whilst Ball’s confidence dropped, resulting in an increased number of unforced errors from the Hallam man. Potter terminated his man 11-4 in the game and won the match overall 3-0.

Matt Lewis then brought the win home for the York side in a tight game against Tom Perry in which he eventually won it 3-2 in games. It was a good performance by Lewis as he came back from 2-0 down.

Calum Fraser then added the gloss to the win as he made the final score 4-1. He put on a fine display to win his match 3-0 against a very strong opponent in the form of Dan Hindmarch. Speaking afterwards Matt Brennan commented on his happiness with the win as he said that it “pretty much guarantees that we will stay up” and that it also provides “confidence ahead of the BUCS final on Friday”.

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