Genever bow sparks Ipswich win
SQUASH: BTexact Ipswich had an exciting 2-1 win over Winchester in their second home match in the National Super Squash League. The new Ipswich team is learning fast at this top level and their win was thanks to powerful performances by Peter Genever at number one and Bradley Ball playing at two.
BTEXACT Ipswich had an exciting 2-1 win over Winchester in their second home match in the National Super Squash League.
The new Ipswich team is learning fast at this top level and their win was thanks to powerful performances by Peter Genever at number one and Bradley Ball playing at two.
Number three for Ipswich, Ben Howell, was troubled by a groin strain but still took world-ranked 43 Tim Garner to four games.
It looked ominous for Ipswich at the start of the evening when Howell limped out of his contest.
Next on court was Ball, the Suffolk number one and world 58, who blew away Mark Cairns, the world 37, in three straight games. He hit every ball as hard as possible to "shell-shock" the visitor, then mixed it with gentle chip shots.
In the third game Cairns tried to slow things down by complaining of moisture on the court, but it had not been proving a problem for the home player.
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The match referee ruled the third game should be completed after the court had been mopped several times.
The victory was completed for Ipswich by Genever, world-ranked 30, who upset the odds in beating rising Australian star Anthony Ricketts in four exciting games. Ricketts is already up to world number 16 and climbing.
This was Genever's debut for Ipswich and he looks like becoming a firm favourite.
He is one of the fastest and fittest players on the circuit and, up against the hard-hitting Aussie, the opening game lasted 20 minutes with huge 50-shot rallies. The score reached 8-8 and then, with two clear points needed, Genever edged up to 9-8 and hit a drop shot to make it 10-8.
Ricketts stormed back in the second to win 9-6 with some magnificent shots but Genever was not to be denied, winning the third and the match by taking the fourth 9-5, making it a win for him and for his team.
Ipswich get ten points for their win, taking them up to fifth in the table.
Ipswich team manager Dave Howell said: "It is beyond our wildest dreams to have played four matches and won two and lost two of them.
"It was spectacular squash last night. The Peter Genever/Anthony Ricketts match lasted one hour and ten minutes and it had everything. And it was played in such good spirit by both players."
The Ipswich team's next home match is on Monday, March 4, against Halifax, before then they travel to Nottingham on February 25.
John Russell, Ball and Howell, subject to recovery from injury, are likely to be in the team which could include world number six Stewart Boswell, Simon Parke world number 20 and Renan Levigne world 29.
"Although Nottingham are below us they have a stronger squad than us on paper and we hope to have Pete Genever back for our next home game."
Some tickets will be available at Ipswich for March 4 – call 01473 251143 for details.
Ben Howell lost to Tim Garner, 5-9, 3-9, 9-6, 3-9.
Bradley Ball beat Mark Cairns, 9-7, 9-3, 9-5.
Peter Genever beat Anthony Ricketts, 10-8, 6-9, 9-5, 9-5.