C Grade Men take out 3rd at Nationals
Just over a week ago the North Shore C Grade men and their manager Sharon traveled to Taumarunui to compete at the NZ National C Grade Superchamps. The team had come runner-ups in the district eliminations but had been invited to attend. Sharon had to be at the manager’s meeting at 12pm so picking up Aaron Cowley on the way they left early in the morning to be greeted by a warm welcome and a welcome pack from the Taumarunui Squash club and out liaison officer. The team were not playing until 4.30pm. The North Shore men were seeded 6th and their first opponents were the 3rd seeds Matamata. The top 5 players were to play Aaron Van Berkel, Jonathon Ko, Geoff Parker, Aaron Cowley and Soomy Jang. Sharon and Aaron booked the team into the motel and then meet the team back at the club watching some of the pool A games. The first round games against Matamata became a 4-1 win to North Shore perking the confidence of the team up that they had a good chance of going on to higher things.
A quiet night back at the motel with home baking for dinner and biscuits for dessert. With the team scheduled to play at 8am in the morning this saw the team up early and having breakfast for some no names mentioned Jono and Soomy. Christchurch were the first opponents in the morning and dispatched 5-0. Their next round for Thursday was scheduled for 3pm so it was time to get out of the club and relax before they came up against the number 2 seeds Wanganui and the match up they all knew was going to be the vital one to win. The top players were played again their second games for the day. Despite leaving everything on the court it was not to be going down 2-3. So back to the motel and another home cooked meal and a couple to end the day.
Having secured 2 wins and confidence still high and coming up against the 10th seeds Aaron C was rested for the match up against Mangakahia the next day which was another 8am start. Mangakahia was another 5-0 win to the team. The weather was inclement that day so with the bye in the afternoon it was an afternoon to do as you wanted. Some coming down to watch the games at 3pm whilst others working in the motel room and the rest relaxing. With the motel full of squash players it was also a time to catch up with players we already knew and meet those we did not. The win against Mangakahia had secured us the play off for 3rd and 4th but pool A had gone to a count back. Once it had been confirmed with Squash NZ the results from pool A we knew that Geyser City were our opponents at 2pm Saturday.
Most had a well deserved sleep in the next day and the weather was shining on the team who were within walking distance from the club a nice warm up before the game. Jono was first on court and not havng dropped a game was determined not to in this one either. It had been asked if he was Lydia Ko’s brother and the name stuck for the game. Jono came close in the 2nd to dropping a game but game back to win 16/14 and then took the third 15/8. Next on court was Mr energizer bunny Soomy and true to form all tournament dropped the second but went on to win in 4. Aaron VB who went on court and in the blink of an eye and 3 games later we had secured the 3rd place. Geoff and Aaron C played their games as well and also had wins. Wanganui went on to be the eventual winners beating Island Bay in 5.
Saturday night was the night to celebrate a great tournament and a great result beating our seeding. Sunday the weather set in as we all made our way home. A valiant effort by the boys and one they can all be proud of.