A weakened Booker team missing Will John and Mike Hallet came to Chesham Bois last night, but even without their top two, they have good strength in depth.
First the not so good…
Simon Ackers standing in for stricken captain Rob Parry started brightly and generally played well against Petr but looked to be hampered by his sore elbow and Petr’s energy gradually told as Si slipped to a 3-1 defeat. 7-11, 11-8, 11-9, 11-3.
Andy Piper at 4 had a tough opponent in the leftie with the lightning forehand Simon Miller. The first saw Andy blasted off court but he did well to get a foothold and win the second before Simon managed to crank that pistol shot forehand into gear again to take the next two. 11-0, 6-11, 11-4, 11-7.
Steve Sieff was hoping to perform a bit better than recent outings against the youngster Freddie Evans (less than half his age – sigh). Unfortunately his failure to find length gave Freddie a relatively comfortable start and the youngster quickly went two games up. A change of strategy – from try and win points to try not to lose them – suited the old man and the momentum seemed to have turned when he ground out the third. But accuracy matters and a succession of forehand volley and drop errors gave away too many points allowing Freddie to take it 3-1. 7-11, 8-11, 11-7, 11-13.
Match to Booker but the best CBLTSC performances came from the top 2.
Phil Taylor showed (lots) of flashes of his classy shotmaking against a super competitive and very able Stu Burnett. It was a see-saw battle with very little between the two until the 5th when Phil established an early lead and then kept his foot down to close it out by a comfortable margin. 11-9, 7-11, 10-12, 12-10, 11-6. Well played both.
At 2 the Will Piper train just rolls on and on. The youngster has already had a heap of impressive wins this season, and was even competitive in his only defeat against county champion Alex Preston three weeks previously. This time he swept George Goodchild away. The first was closely matched but Will did what he does and emerged victorious when the situation looked tight. After that his movement and confident attacks were too much for a game George, and he was off court after three entertaining games. 18-6, 11-3, 11-9.
So final score 15-9. A creditable defeat, but the form of the lower order needs to improve to turn these 2-3 losses into wins.
Next week last match of the first half is the club derby. Come out and support!