Boston Squash club wins National Plate tournament

We are the champions! Pictured (from left) are Stones, Hildred and Fisher.
We are the champions! Pictured (from left) are Stones, Hildred and Fisher.

BOSTON Squash Club have lifted the National Club Championships’ Over 45s Plate title.

Mark Hildred, Dave Stones and Colin Fisher overcame British Airways on Saturday afternoon to be crowned winners.

Their journey began with a first round defeat in the main over 45s competition, with club number one Hildred injured at the time.

However, victories against Hereford and Chelmsford in the plate secured Boston their seat at the finals weekend in Nottingham.

In the final, Fisher took a 3-1 lead against Alan Boulden, courtesy of some clean backhand drives.

But in a contest that swung back and forth, the British Airways player eventually won the opening game 9-6.

In the second game, Fisher flew into an 8-3 lead with great momentum and pace, so much so that the referee had to slow him down in between points.

Boulden tried to claw it back but, when serving at 7-8 down, he missed Fisher’s forehand cross-court return, and Boston’s number three won the following rally to level the match at 1-1 in games.

Game three saw Fisher go 5-1 down, but he steadily drew back to 6-6 before winning 9-6.

The next game was decisive as Fisher went 6-0 in front winning the game 9-1 to seal the match with a drop shot.

Next on court were the teams’ first seeds, Hildred and New Zealander Brendan Murphy of British Airways.

Hildred jetted off into a 7-1 lead without too much delay, and finished off the first game to the tune of 9-1 with a backhand boast at the front.

In the second game , Hildred found himself 5-1 up before his opponent found his groove and won it 9-7.

The third game opened much like the second as Hildred took a 4-0 lead, eventually winning 9-6.

The fourth game began in a tight fashion and early on it was evenly balanced at 3-3, Hildred eventually claiming the match with a 9-5 success.

Boston had secured the national over 45s plate before Stones even had to pick up his racket.

He was up against Barry Gage, who proved to be an unorthodox opponent who adopted the unusual technique of hitting double-handed backhands.

In the first game, Stones went from 3-1 up to 4-3 down, and then lost the game 9-4.

A couple of points into the second game Stones had to change his racket, but it didn’t happen to disrupt the momentum of his British Airways opponent, who won the second game 9-0.

In the third and final game Stones earned a 7-4 lead.

Despite this, Gage kept his calm and took the final game 9-7 to win his match 3-0.

Nevertheless it was merely a consolation for British Airways as Boston had already won the competition and could leave the departures lounge with another item for the Boston Squash and Racketball Club trophy cabinet.

The club also won the main plate by default.