Longridge took on a strong unbeaten Vale team, who are looking good to be crowned champions come the end of season.
At number five Robert Ingham started a little slow and against top of the league, you just can’t do that. However, Rob did give his opponent some things to think about, mixing up his shot selection and boasting the ball (ie: off the side wall) to gain points. However, his opponent used the same tactic with greater effect and won this encounter 15-9, 15-11, 17-15 to put Vale 1-0 up.
Number four Bill Holmes took on a player with good racket-skills/ability andwith Bill a little below parr, it was going to be a tough encounter. Although the scores were close in each game, Bill just did not keep the ball away from his opponent enough and against this type of opponent, you will get punished. Bill eventually lost 15-12, 15-13, 15-12, putting Vale into a 2-0 lead.
Number three Alec Hesmondhalgh took on a player with great experience, but the Dark-Destroyer was well up for this encounter and took the first two games 15-12, 15-12, leaving his opponent frustrated and trailing two games to nil. Into a close third game and with Alec putting his opponent under pressure, it was looking good, but the Vale player battled back well and took this game 15-12. Into the fourth game and with the Vale player having changed his game-plan, the balcony could sense a come-back was on the cards, the Vale man took the fourth game 15-9. So into a deciding fifth game and with the Dark-Destroyer having given it his all in the previous games, it was the Vale player who took the fith game 15-5 and celebrated this with a victory shout and clenched fist-salute to the balcony. A great game played in a sporting way though!
Number two Steve Robinson took on an undefeated player and set about upsetting the odds by taking the opening game 16-14. A close second game ensued with this going to the Vale player 15-13. Into the third game and with Steve moving around court well and giving every rally plenty of concentration/effort, resulting in some lenghty exchanges, but it was the Vale player who took this game 15-11 and with it a two one lead. Into the fourth game and with Steve still moving well around a warm court, the Vale man had to keep the ball moving from corner too corner, this tactic payed off and he took this game 15-6 and a three game to one victory, putting Vale of Lune 4-0 up.
This week at number one, Steve (Griz) Taylor took on an undefeated player and with the opening rally setting the scene for some very lengthy exchanges, with each and every rally getting longer in duration. Steve kept his back-hand tight and also played some nice forehand drives, but his opponent was relentless in his pursuit of the ball and dealt with these shots, which would have put lesser players in a great deal of trouble! With both players keeping the ball to the back of the court, it was a case of who would attack the front of the court (ie: drop-shots). The Vale player adopted this tactic well, eventually taking the match three games to nil, 15-11, 15-10, 15-6, a great effort from Steve though!
All in all, a valiant effort from the whole of the Longridge team, up against a class-act in the form of Vale of Lune and remembering this is only Longridge’s first defeat of 2015 and no shame in it against a Vale outfit that will no doubt be crowned champions come the end of the season.