As we get a little bit closer to the business end of the season there’s plenty of movement in the Division 1 league positions. Somewhat bizarrely Smash and Standish had identical records ... both had won 9, drawn 1 and lost 6. And both squads had only three fit players so team selection was a formality.
Pimps Out Taylor, Kraftwerk Nick and Dazla lined up for Smash against Alex Almond, Matty Kennedy and Adele Spibey. On paper Standish were favourites ... luckily the game isn’t played on paper, it is played on a green table in the delightful Rainford Labour Club Stadium Arena of Light.
Game on. Pimps Out v Adele went 3-1 to the Smasher and then Matty did the same to Dazla in the next ... a game that included three tight deuce finishes. So it was 4-4 when Latics Alex took on Kraftwerk ... experience v novice ... audible gasps were heard around the streets of Rainford when Novice Nick took the second 11-1 ... and then went on to win in three. Adele and Dazla had a stoating five setter (which included another 11-1 set to the Smasher) but it was Adele that took the vital fifth set.
Five more sets followed when Pimps Out Taylor played Latics Alex ... this time the experienced Alex won the fifth to nudge the Standish score closer to Smash. Then Standish won the doubles in another five setter, with a thrilling 12-10 finish ... the newly installed electronic scoreboard (sponsored by Pye Sports) revealed it was 13-all. There seemed to be no way to separate the teams.
Kraftwerk v Kennedy ... can we have five more sets please? They duly obliged. Matty took control in the fourth, wining 11-4 ... only for Kraftwerk to win the fifth 11-6. The novice was on fire. Dazla then ‘stepped up to the oche’ as the underdog to play Latics Alex ... he upset the form book by winning 3-1, which included a pulverising 11-2 final set.
The penultimate match ... Adele v Kraftwerk ... five fun-filled sets yet again ... attack and counter attack ... there was a faint sound of jangling ... it was the nerves of both players as they reached 10-10 in the fifth set ... and it was Kraftwerk who got it across the line 12-10. Pimps beat Matty in the last match ... Standish had played some good stuff but Smash had edged it ... 25-19 win for the Smashers. Unbeaten Kraftwerk went home with the man of the match trophy and a big beaming smile ... safe in the knowledge the nickname of Novice Nick no longer applies.
In the post match interview Latics Alex was asked by Gabby Logan for some comments, he said ... “we were unlucky tonight ... I think Nick’s arms exceed the regulation length so we will be appealing to Wigan League ... also didn’t the tables used to be longer than this?”