Super League update
Friday, October 26, 2018 at 11:36AM
Editor

        ISLAND SQUASH SUPER LEAGUE  

 

BACKGROUND:  In light of the fact that our top players are not involved in the SQUASH PEI    Wednesday evening league I feel that we have a need to give these players a regular competitive outlet that suits their interest, level of play and schedule. As well, if done well this league would serve as a motivator for other players to improve their current abilities.

 

FORMAT:           Four teams made up of two players, the #1 player representing their home town and acting as captain.  Each season (fall and winter) would be made up seven match dates. This schedule would be a double round robin and finals night. The objective will to be to give our top players regular refereed matches with prize money. Ideally the winning team on finals night will take home $400, runner-up $250, 3rd place $150 and 4th $100. Based on league standings first and second play and third/fourth. This payout is for the top players and it would be at their discretion if they decided to share with their team mate.

The teams for the first session are:

1.       O’Leary –  Mike Buchanan

2.       Souris –     Mitch Chaisson

3.       Cornwall –Nathan Phillips

4.       Stratford - Liam Jinks

The number two position is chosen by the captain and he may change his player at anytime. This position will contribute to the team’s overall scoring and be used as an extra development match for our A players.

 

SCORING:          Each encounter will be scored as follows: #1 players - a point for each game won plus two points for match win. The number two players will just score a point for each game won. Example: Mike beats Liam 3-1, and Liam’s #2 wins 3-0. Final score O’Leary 5, Stratford 4. After six weeks totals will dictate placing for finals night and division of the league prize money. As you can see this league is set up primarily for the top four players and results are favoured in that direction.

 

PRIZE $:              At this stage I will try to raise enough funds to pay out as follows:

1st   $400

2nd   $250             

 3rd  $150

 4th…$100

 

DETAILS:

 

SCHEDULE:

                                Oct. 23    O’Leary vs Stratford     Souris vs Cornwall

                                Oct. 30    O’Leary vs Cornwall…. Souris vs Stratford

                                Nov. 06    O’Leary vs Souris……   Cornwall vs Stratford

                                Nov 13    Stratford vs O’Leary… .Cornwall vs Souris

                                Nov. 20    Cornwall vs O’Leary     Stratford vs Souris

                                Nov. 27    Souris vs O’Leary         Stratford vs Corwall

                                Dec. 04    Finals Night   1 vs 2…..3 vs 4

 

 

HISTORY MADE IN FIRST NIGHT OF SUPERLEAGUE

Play got underway in last evening’s first night of the newly created Island Superleague with 8 very interesting matches. To kick things off we had the number two of each team doing battle. At this position there was some mystery as to who would be in the lineup. Scheduled on court 4 was Cornwall and Souris, and as it turned out projected Cornwall’s Matt Twiddy was replaced by Benoit Sampson who just started university and admittedly not playing much squash. Captain Mitch Chaisson had not officially announced his team mate, but it soon became apparent that we were going to have a father/son matchup. And it was the always in shape Ken Sampson who put the Souris team up 3-0.

On the other court we knew who would be representing Stratford and the Liam Jinks lead team. He is too young to drive, so why not hire a top master’s player and his old man. But who would he match up against from ‘the West’? Well at 7:25 captain Mike Buchanan walked in with Lyndon Oulton. Lyndon, like Benoit was having a slow start to his season. His speed and tenacity took Lester by surprise and he couldn’t contain the O’Leary #2 in the first game. But at this point the ever-fit Mr. Jinks took over and coasted home 3-1.

The fun now was about to begin. The four players who in all likelihood will be fighting it out to represent our province at the national team championships in February took the court. The Souris/Cornwall matchup was a total question mark. Nathan Phillips who arguably was on route to become the Island’s top player suffered a series of injuries and he was away from the competitive squash for seven months. This was his first comeback match. While Mitch who is never too far away from the game was hoping to impose his experience on the younger Cornwall player. This was a total back and forth affair which could have gone either way, the first three games went to extra points with Phillips securing the second and third. Maybe it was a physical or mental lapse but the Souris native had a very quick win in the fourth to set up the decider. It was anyone’s game, but in this case it the younger quicker player who got the job done 11-8 and chalk up the much needed extra points for the Cornwall side. Final score Cornwall 5, Souris 5.

The small but enthusiastic crowd now were treated to some unbelievable squash and history at the same time. Mike Buchanan, the Island’s number one player has not lost to another player in a refereed situation for over 10 years. There was no indication that this would continue to be the case last evening in his match against Stratford’s #1 Liam Jinks as he comfortably won the first game. But then things began to change. Mike’s best shots were being returned, the rallies became longer and Liam was beginning to show the confidence that he could now compete with Mike. All the games were tight, the third and fourth going overtime, with Mike obviously the more tired displayed the guts and hard work that made him so successful. Saving match balls he went on the win the fourth and had Liam shaking his head and perhaps losing some of the confidence that he displayed earlier. If one was a betting person they would have picked Mike, especially after the first half of the game, but at 7 all Mike finally slowed down a step or two while the tremendously athletic 15 year old, though not always making the best shot selections was still picking up Mike’s best and frustrating his senior. A couple of quick errors from the O’Leary captain and Liam was coasting in, 11-8 and recording history. Something no other Island player has been able to do since Mike Buchanan was a teenager himself. We certainly look forward to their re-match in three weeks time.

 

FIRST WEEK STANDINGS:

Stratford – 8 points

Cornwall – 5 points 

Souris         5 points

 OLeary -     3 points

Article originally appeared on Squash PEI 2018 (http://squashpei.org/).
See website for complete article licensing information.