Canowindra Squash Club held another successful annual Championship weekend recently, and with a slight increase in participation from previous years, it proved a very tight contest in all grades.
Special “thanks” to our Championship Sponsors; Mr Charles Curran (Nassau Estate Wines), Swinging Bridge Wines, Canowindra Golf Club, Canowindra Bowling Club, and Mark Adams (MJA Cattle Scan); who continue to make generous donations to our event each year. Thanks also to Johnny Lawrence for donating lots of drinks for our thirsty players.
Each year, a lot of effort goes into cleaning up the courts and surrounding areas to make them ready for the upcoming games. Thank you to our tireless working bee participants: Amber Meurs, Jonno Preston, Wendy Bowman, Helen McSpadden, Cate McSpadden, Fiona Knight, Nigel Knight, Sandy McDonald (who I’m sure got there at about 5am) and Mark’s broom (with no operator in sight), for giving up a few hours of your Saturday morning to assist. Further to this, Amber, Jonno, Helen, Wendy and Cate spent considerable time working on draws so the Championships could run smoothly. A great night was had by all at our annual Championship Dinner on the Saturday night at the Pomegranate Restaurant, organised by Fiona and Mark.
Preliminary games for the Ladies Open kicked off the Championships on Monday night, with many games going down to the last minutes of the match to determine a clear winner. All games were played with great determination and it was good to see lots of new girls having a go this year. The Ladies Open Final was contested on Sunday between Amber Meurs and Peta Laurie, a rivalry which has been ongoing for some years now. In a very fast paced game, Amber came out on top to become the Ladies Open Champion. The Ladies Consolation Plate Final saw Wendy Bowman take on Cassie Bennett, with Cassie the eventual winner. Kobie Rogers and Fiona Knight fought out a tight tussle in the Ladies Consolation Plate 2 game, with Kobie too good for Fiona in the end.
D Grade was contested by a group of new players in Sam Gavin, Les Robson and Tom Wills, along with one stalwart, Fiona Knight. Fiona beat Sam in the preliminary matches, and then as fate would have it, they lined up against each other again in the D Grade Final. Sam’s power was too much for Fiona’s smarts, with Sam playing great squash to take out the D Grade Championship.
C Grade Champion was Jacque Kinsela, who played a great running game against Cassie Bennett to take the title. This was a very closely contested grade, with Wendy Bowman and Rox Breen also playing some great squash.
The B Grade Final was a very tense affair, with eerie silence from the spectators. The winner was a clever Troy Loud, who kept his cool to play a great game. I won’t you tell who he beat, but she’s not happy!
The Mens Masters Final was a cracker game, which resulted in a draw at full time. Neil Campbell’s calm, friendly demeanour was eventually too good for David Bigg’s antics, in a game requiring extra time to decide the result. Fiona Knight backed up for her third final of the day to play Helen McSpadden in the Ladies Masters. With plenty of fine shots played by both oldies, Helen proved too strong and took the title.
Youngsters Angus Andrews and Will Wright battled it out in one of the most skilful Primary School Championship games for some time. It was clear to see Rohan Toole’s junior coaching program is paying dividends, with these two kids putting on a high standard game! In the end, Angus just held out Will, to win by one point.
The all important Open Championship was contested by a lot more players than in recent years. Amber Meurs, Scott Bennett, Matt Dunn, Jonno Preston, Geoff McSpadden, Mark Adams, Joel Palmer and Peta Laurie all played great games throughout the Championships, to end at a ripper Final between Mark and Scott. Crafty Mark couldn’t match “oh so casual” Scott, who was crowned the Canowindra Squash Club Open Champion for 2012.
We have been lucky to have a number of new faces join us playing squash over the last few years, with lots of those showing rapid improvement. Most Improved for the Monday Competition was awarded to Karen Stone and Most Improved for the Thursday Competition was given to Paul Watson. Angela Ellis, although not a new player to the ranks, she is certainly playing like a new person, and thus was deemed Most Improved Lady.
The most prestigious awards, The Tony Dunn Sportsmanship and The Canowindra Squash “Club Person”, were for the first time presented to the same person. Congratulations to Mark Adams, who thoroughly deserves these honours, as he is always keen to have a chat, does the jobs no one else wants to (and does it with a smile), as well as making sure all the books are balanced as the Club Treasurer. Mark, you really are a “treasure”!
Who knows what the Championships in 2013 might bring!
Yours in Squash, Cate.