Cromer Squash Club Handicap Report 2015
MOORE THE MERRIER
Richard Moore is Cromer Squash Club's new handicap champion. The newcomer to the club, who was playing in the prestigious tournament for the first time, took full advantage of his positive handicap of +10 to win a well contested and interesting final against Matthew Jordan (+3) 14-16 17-15 15-12 15-12 in front of a large and appreciative Norwich Road crowd.
Moore was following in the steps of his unrelated name-sake, Chris, who won the title twenty years previously and, under the excellent handicapping system, went into each game with an immediate nine point advantage. He started off rather nervously , serving the first ball of the match out of court and was then only able to win another two points as Jordan opened up a 13-11 lead. He did recover but then on "game ball" served another fault which enabled Jordan to take the game 16-14.
The second game followed a different pattern as Moore, playing with more confidence, opened up a 14-8 lead only for Jordan to save six "game balls" and draw level at 14-14. In a surprising move Moore then had enough confidence in his own ability to opt to play to 17 and he won three successive rallies to take the game 17-15 and draw level.
In the third game Jordan pulled the handicap back to 8-10 but then, for the second time in the match, Moore won three successive rallies to lead 13-8 and went on to take the game 15-12. Buoyed by this success he stormed into a 12-3 lead in the fourth only to serve another fault but he put this behind him as he went on to lead 13-6 and although Jordan pulled the score back to 12-13 Moore took the next two points to win the game 15-12 and the match 3-1.
Both players worked hard to get to the final. Moore had an extremely close first round match against the 2011 beaten finalist, Alistair Dunnett (+10) before winning 3-2 and then won a titanic quarter-final against the 2007 winner and reigning club champion, Ben Herrieven (-10) before having a fortuitous walk-over in the semi final as his scheduled opponent, Sean Moore, was forced to withdraw through injury. After a first round bye Jordan defeated the runner-up in the 2013 club championships, Alan Harper (0) in the quarter-finals and then in the semi-final was forced to come from 0-2 and "match ball" down against veteran Steve Booth (+5) before winning 3-2.
Afterwards Moore said: "This was a tremendous competition and I had three extremely close and enjoyable matches. Not for one moment did I think I would win the tournament." Jordan paid tribute to the winner saying: "Richard played exceptionally well and took full advantage of his handicap. The key moment was at 14-14 in the second game when I expected Richard to opt for "sudden death". If he had done that I would have won the game and gone 2-0 ahead but the way Richard played in the third and fourth games he would probably have gone on to win the fifth as well"