The John Ford Semi Finals were held last night (8th march) at Congleton Leisure centre. We have two finalists, we had a good night’s badminton, we had a night that the handicappers might prefer to put behind them. This is the
The first semi was an intra-club affair between two Crosses teams.
Nominally they were Crosses A (the stronger team) and Crosses B (the less strong team). Let’s just say it was a contest between two teams who knew each other well. Call them the first named and the second named. We had arranged security
to break up any flare ups or outbreaks of violence but the evening passed off in good spirit. In drawing comparisons between the teams the first named seemed to hold the experience cards, the second named youthful exuberance. The first named were the more
classically educated players, the second named the street fighters. Even amongst themselves they predicted a close affair. Chairman Sumner did not replicate his usual John Ford spectacular on this occasion. The perennial Alan Holmes and Anne Haslam could
not handle the new brigade (two of whom – Matt Wain and Karl Jones who played really well - were coached by the author of this piece incidentally – well done chaps). Helen Shatwell had a good night, and Fiona Barlow (as always) and Craig Delury were highly
dependable. For the first named Elliot Hesp, Christine Graham and Margaret Watson gave their all but found themselves up against it. So the close match prediction from everyone was shattered when it turned out that the second named team thrashed the first
named by 105 points before we even considered the handicap. On paper it had been decided to give the second named a small helping hand of 34 points, not that they needed any help. Their final tally was therefore 392 to 253 – a difference of 139 points. The
handicappers will be watching for you next time – second named!!
The other match between Goostrey and Weaverham was more conventional. Weaverham fielded the usual solid men (Kevin Ashley, Andy Brown and Andy Lewis) but unavailability meant Sian Lewis and Hannah Jacks stepping up to the plate to join
the very dependable Maureen Warburton. Goostrey were an interesting mix of youth and experience. Father and son pairing Carl and Cameron McGregor Ogden had a good night. Pam Jeffs and Rachel Horsley did their usual solid stint. The team was completed by Manbun
Lee (recent handicap finalist) and a very inexperienced but willing Louise Riley. The games went fairly much to expectation. Once again a great match which ended up before handicap with Weaverham 53 points ahead. To some surprise the handicap went Weaverham’s
way also (10 points) resulting in a 63 point win. Well done to Hannah, Sian and Louise who were all playing amongst much more experienced players. They all contributed massively to a good match.
The final will now take place at Alsager Leisure Centre on Thursday April 5th between Crosses (whatever they call themselves next time) and Weaverham. Good luck to all. The handicapping team is not a set appointed group, it
is who we can get together on that occasion. If anyone would like to have a go you are more than welcome. Just let Dave or Brian know. We are looking for insider (badminton) dirt on both teams.