The Mavericks returned to active duty last night, determined to defend their title despite losing the Piper duo to Division 1. Our opponents were Beaconsfield Tigers, who ran us close last year and looked like a stern challenge.
First up was Pete vs Richard. Early indications suggested that this match was going to be over quickly with Pete in imperious form and almost coasting through the first 2 games. However the Mavericks see ourselves as a charitable organisation and Richard was generously cut some slack, allowing him to take the next 2 games. It was neck and neck in the 5th but when the crunch came Pete had more fire in his generously proportioned belly and came through for the team. First blood to the Mavericks.
I was up next against new member Ashley. As with Pete’s match the first 2 games went my way and I was feeling fairly confident. Not entirely sure what happened in the 3rd but I managed to hit about 8 shots in a row straight into the tin. Not an ideal way to proceed and the game duly went to Ashley. The 4th was a tough battle with Ashley retrieving well and me blowing like an old steam engine. Fortunately I had enough shots in the Maverick locker to get over the line, 3-1. Phew!
Meanwhile Ben had fired up his engines to take on Ian. Both players went for it and there were some extraordinary, hard hitting rallies. Ben reminded us of his Maverick pedigree by playing a cheeky shot through his legs, but was always working hard and was able to carve out a 2-0 lead. The Ice Man was not in the mood for hanging around though and rocketed through the last game 9-0. A well deserved 3-0 victory, sealing the match for the Mavericks.
Beaconsfield like to pull in a high flying ringer and last night was no exception. Up stepped first team regular Nic Manley against our new number 1, Simon. It was a bruising first couple of games with Nic really keeping Simon on his toes. Events weren’t really helped by Nic cheerfully commenting on each shot / state of the weather / Allardyce’s sacking etc. Having lost the first 2 games Simon had a really good go in the fourth and took it to game point, but Nic managed to wrestle it off him for a 3-0 victory. Good effort from Simon though, who sportingly wore the loser’s helmet, but still managed to look rather cool in it.
Last, but by no means least, was a continuation of the Tom vs Gareth saga. Gareth was well up for it and started the stronger, securing the first 2 games. It always looked like Tom was in the battle though and pulled off the Mavericks shot of the night with an overhead backhand volley hit the nick before rolling dead on to the court. The 3rd game game saw a shift in the balance of power as Tom improved and Gareth started to look a bit drained. The inevitable 5th game saw Mary resetting her supper timing and a spirited fight back from Gareth, but it was Tom who took all the glory, winning the game 9-5 to take the match 3-2. Fabulous effort.
As Ben would say a truly “Boomtastic” start with the final score 16-8. Well played all!