Betts starts ball rolling for Heywood

HEYWOOD Sports and Racquet Club's squash teams picked up two wins and a loss within the week.

The Suffolk League team returned from Ipswich with an unexpected 3-2 win. They were playing their first fixture of the season in Division One since their promotion the previous summer.

The squad was boosted with the arrival of Neil Cross from Stowmarket and Diss had Dan Calver, Jack Bell, Richard Cutts and Dan Betts at second and fifth strings respectively.

The night was off to the perfect start as Betts, who relished his call-up from the fifth team, was in a defiant mood – picking up balls all over the court and the match was won purely by making fewer mistakes.

Betts piled the pressure on his younger opponent, winning 3-0.

Richard Cutts, on the other hand, was up against it from the off and did well to pick up the second game but lost out 3-1.

With the score at 1-1 and the top three matches to play it was all up for grabs. Neil Cross faced Kristian Day while on the adjacent court Jack Bell came up against Tony Barker.

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Both Diss players started slowly, losing the first game before Bell started to turn the screw, levelling the match before taking the third games as well.

Meanwhile, Day had taken a 2-0 lead and it looked all like one-way traffic before Cross started extending the rallies and working his opponent harder. Before long it was obvious that Day was struggling to keep up with his opponent's pace and fitness across and the court and Cross was looking to rely on that to get himself back in the match.

As both matches unfolded is was clear that a thrilling match was unfolding as both matches were tied at two games all. Cross eased to a fifth game win to give Diss a 2-1.

Barker seemed to have done the business on Bell leading 6-2 and 8-3 before a string of touch shots from Bell bought his way back into the match and at 9-10 Bell saved match points before going all the way and winning the match 12-10 to give Diss the win.

In the final match of the night spectators were probably thinking that this match would have no chance of impressing as much as the previous four but they were wrong.

It was again a five-set thriller with Dan Calver losing out to his extremely fit opponent 11-8 in the fifth and being 5-0 down.

The Norfolk League third team are still looking for the first win and they were thrashed 18-2 by a over- strengthened North Norfolk side.

The two consolation points were picked up by John Shaw, at first string, losing 3-2 to Martin Guppy.

Next Monday the Norfolk League first team host East Anglia Tennis and Squash Club at 7.40pm, all spectators welcome.

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