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Stowmarket Pumas 5 - 5 Thurston Vulcans -
01/11/2017 - David Gough -
“Oops, I Did It Again!”
Visiting Stowmarket from Planet Vulcan in the constellation of Thurston were Sean Gridley, Gordon Meadows and Andy Janes. The big cats representing the Pumas side were Scott Day, Luke Davies-Stokes and David Gough. The overall match provided much entertainment with no less than half the matches going to five sets, with much swinging of pendulums along the way.
First up was Scott, (fairly recently returned from a trip to the Far East), vs Sean, and Scott’s rustiness showed as Sean raced to a comfortable one set lead. Scott rallied in the second and got just enough of his flat hit forehands on target to take it 12-10. Unfortunately, he couldn’t sustain it and Sean took the next two sets in comfortable fashion.
Luke was up next against Gordon and his heavy looping won him the first set to 4. Somehow, as Luke frittered away a few chances to finish it, Gordon hung on and nicked the next 12-10. “Oops!” said Luke before turning his frustration into attack to sail through the next 11-2. However, the pendulum swung back to Gordon 13-11 in the fourth set, with Luke finally sealing this strange match 11-8 in the fifth.
Thankfully, for the Pumas, the next match was a bit more straightforward as David was on top all the way through the three sets against Andy, winning to 6, 4 & 7.
Luke’s lack of form on the night was more evident playing Sean, whom he’d beaten the last time they visited, but Sean was too strong this time and won in straight sets. -9, -8 -8.
Scott vs Andy produced four close sets with Scott taking the 3rd, 11-8, but Andy edged the others, each to 9.
David’s match against Gordon was another pendulum job, Gordon taking the first to 6, and the next three going alternately to 7. David was able to take a several-point lead into the change-over, which he extended to win 11-4. Along the way were some extended (and tiring!) and entertaining rallies.
Luke’s final match vs Andy was another ding-dong battle, taking turns winning relatively comfortable sets until the last one which Luke, though nowhere near the level we know he can play, won 15-13.
David has never really troubled Sean too much before today, but played well enough to edge the first two sets and was 9-7 up in the third when his luck ran out and Sean gradually took a grip on the match. Again, there were many entertaining rallies for the onlookers to enjoy.
Similarly in the final singles, Scott won the first two sets and Gordon the next two, but this time Scott came back to take the decider.
He and David were looking good after taking the first set in the doubles against Sean & Andy, but the visitors wielded the Vulcan death grip in the next three sets, with Andy playing particularly well to earn them a draw, all in all a very fair result on the night.