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The Solent Classic
18-22 November 2010
Men Only | Lee-on-Solent
 | Tim Vail |               
2007 Event      2008 Event      2009 Event
Sun 21st, Final:

[1] Andy Whipp bt [5/8] James Snell   8/11, 11/9, 11/8, 11/7

Welcome to the finals day at lee on solent a fairly sombre Sunday morning at 9am, maybe the left over effects of brandy and lavage from the previous evenings comedy night.

Things now starting to warm up the graded finals are all underway lets hope the heat is turned right up for the main event. First we have Andy Whipp pro at Manchester northern v James Snell fast improving pro from Exeter. Both players promising to bring their A game to the party, both of the back of good wins yesterday evening.

First James in to a early lead playing much tighter and taking the pace off the ball dragging Andy forward, great rally Andy volley straight kill 6-9 blood starting to flow around the veins the game as both players start to move better, James just takes it 11/8.

Second Andy stays on court during the break and goes on to a 5-0 lead, broken strings for James, pulls it back to 6-7, using the height on the front wall, using it to great effect. Top rally at 8-8 ,two gift from James gives Andy game ball then a barrage of attacking play from Andy to let him take the game 11/9.

Third game, 3 errors from the outset gives Andy a 6-3 lead in next to no time, c’mon James head up 4-8. But Andy comes back despite a dramatic dive from James on game ball to take 11/8 and a 2-1 lead.

50minutes gone do we have a game on our hands?

Fourth game, nip and tuck game intensity rising 7-6, James after 10minutes. Great retrieving from both players at the front of the court and back of the court, just favouring Whippy, who turns out to be the eventual winner, taking the final game 11/7.



Sat 20th, Quarters & Semis


[5/8] James Snell bt [3/4] Eddie Charlton
           11/8, 4/11, 7/11, 11/4, 11/7
[1] Andy Whipp bt [3/4] Ben Ford  
            6/11, 11/6, 11/9, 1/11, 3/11


[5/8] James Snell bt [2] Tim Vail  
         10/12, 11/7, 11/7, 10/12, 11/5
[3/4] Eddie Charlton bt Andrew Birks      
           11/3, 7/11, 11/6, 11/5
[3/4] Ben Ford bt [5/8] Chris Truswell
           11/8, 8/11, 11/13, 11/6, 11/5
[1] Andy Whipp bt [5/8] Neil Hitchens         
           11/8, 11/4, 11/7

Hi and welcome to a very busy Lee on the Solent graded tournament running alongside BSPA and starting early doors at 9am.

First of the ¼ finals – Tim Vail v James Snell… this is a tough one to call and a slow start from Tim. At 8-6 to James, the game looks to be getting up to speed. I can’t believe James played like this against J Kookal! Two errors from James lets Tim back in for him to squeeze 11-9. Same sort of start to the 2nd with a cross-court drop from Tim (he will tell all it’s skill).

James still persisting with a short game, leaving him 6-3 down. But some unforced errors from Vail gives James game ball. 1-1, a game that ebbed but no flow. The 3rd goes the same way but more errors from Tim gives the game to James.

A really tight 4th, both players beginning to realise the importance of this game, 10-10, James serving, a back-hand volley kill, Tim game ball, great retrieving at the front from both players, finishing with a back-hand cross-court drop from Vail, game on! The crowd are gathered with anticipation – mostly Lee support. (James Snell 10/12 11/7 11/7 10/12 11/5)

Second of the ¼ finals – Andrew Birks v Eddie Charlton… on the other court, Eddie looks to be very comfortable against Andrew to take the first. But Andrew had other ideas with great controlled length using the front wall dimensions well to take the 2nd.

Tight exchanges from both, they are very busy players with Eddie just edging out the rallies, lucky nick, giving the game and match ball to Eddie. (Eddie Charlton 11/3 7/11 11/6 11/5)

Third of the ¼ finals – Andy Whipp v Neil Hitchins… strong play from the outset from Andy. Neil working hard and staying with him until Andy pulls away a forehand drop and then a strong perfect length drive – 11/8. Andy stays on court during the break. He then starts well getting good height with lobs and looking good but Neil hangs in there. Andy’s strength really shines through though and finishes 11/4.

Both players are now using the height and looking for the loose ball of the lob, 10/5. Match ball, double hit chance for Neil 7/10? Andy cross lob to take the match. (Andy Whipp 11/8 11/4 11/7)

Last of the ¼ finals – Ben Ford v Chris Truswell… on the other court Ben takes a closely fought 1st game 11/8. In the second game Ben is onto the short ball very early but a high volley kill from Chris stops the ball.

Ben seems to be losing his concentration as Chris takes the game 11/8 and then the next 13/11. Ben however regroups to hold on to games four and five to run out as the eventual winner. (Ben Ford 11/8 8/11 11/13 11/4 11/9)

Eddie Charlton v James Snell
Eddie took an early lead in the 2nd and both players are looking to take the ball short at every opportunity. Eddie took a 6-0 lead but James get it back to 4-8 but Eddie’s width is slightly better not giving a chance to attack Eddie, taking the game 11/4.

The 3rd game had great movement from Eddie and a really telling drop takes him to a 5/1 lead. Referee Paul Wykes holds his own with a few contested points, a miss-hit from James when all he had to do was hit the front wall and a well contested point took Eddie to 9/6. A great court cross drop leads to 10/8 and an attempted back hand drop from James arrives in the tin to give the game 11/8 to Eddie.

James flies into a 5/0 lead and Eddie seems happy to let this game go. Gunho squash seems to be the order of the day and James takes the game 11/4. In the 5th game, it was back to business straightaway from both players sending lob and low kills which they negate to James going to a 9/5 lead.

A great cross court drop gives him a forehand drive kill and James takes the match 3/2.

Ben Ford v Andy Whipp
Andy looking strong from the outset and setting a high pace. Maybe Ben could be feeling the effects of two hard five setters as Andy takes the game 11/6.

In the second game Ben comes out hitting hard to Andy with a back hand taking in a cross court volley but Andy claws his way back with some precise lobs even though Ben takes the game 11/6. On to the third game, with Ben taking the ball to the front of the court at every opening. Andy was working hard at the front of the court but no rallies and Ben takes the game 11/9. 2-1 Ben is upset!

Into the fourth game, Ben doesn’t fancy anything longer than four shots as Andy takes the game 11/1. Into the fifth game and Ben tells us 34 minutes for four games – woo hoo! Great racket skills from both players keeps the game.

THAT HURTS is the cry from Ben as Andy takes an 8/4 lead. 5/9 is Ben’s last chance but Andy closes the game out 11/5.

Until tomorrow, good night from Lee-on-the-Solent… and now to the LOST Comedy Store with the local compare – Keith Barron!


Hi and welcome to the Lee on the Solent for the 1st in the BSPA series and for those who have not gone to Australia for the ashes test lets hope it proves to be just as exciting.

First up is Winchesters Kirby Sinclair vs Keith Timms (Broxbourne)

Sinclair played the shot maker in this match as he styled a moustache on court which we hope is in aid of movember but we are still not to sure what the hair is in aid of! Whilst Timms kept him under pressure with good retrieving, and then started to come in to his own in the second winning a tight game, Sinclair then edging out a tight third game, and taking the fourth to take the match. 11/6 9/11 11/6 11/7

On the opposite court was Andrew Birks Vs Dean Russell, Birks takes control of the 1st,3rd and 4th, reaching the first match ball of the match in the 4th and taking the match 11/6. Whilst Russell played well in the second to take that game 6/11. 11/7 6/11 11/3 11/6

Along the corridor from the glass back courts played Eddy Charlton vs Neil Chambers, Charlton seemed to be taking control of this match at 2-0 up, but chambers battled through to keep Charlton on his toes and keeping the game scores tight. Chambers then makes a break through taking the 3rd game, maybe jetlag is creeping in for Charlton. But Charlton comes back to take the match 3-1. 11/7 11/8 4/11 11/8

Next up is Steve Siveter vs local young pro Robert Downer, good exchanges from the outset with Robert taking the 1st game with some excellent front court play. Another tight 2nd game with Siveter sneaking it 11/9, good exchanges in the 3rd with Siveter working Downer very hard with precise length and tight drops, taking the game 11/6, Siveter then won the match edgily, taking it 13/11. 6/11 11/9 11/6 13/11

Whilst on court 6 ( the coaching court) was the clubs pro, Tim Vail vs Richard Birks. Tim taking the 1st game with ease 11/4, but Birks fighting back to make the 2nd and third games very tight, making it harder for Vail to close out the match 3-0. 11/4 16/14 11/9

Next on was number one seed Andy Whipp from Manchester vs Dave Haley, Whipp was not looking to stay on court to long winning 11/4 11/7 11/7

After a quick show from the number one seed, next on was the ¾ seed Ben Ford v Alex Phillips. The first two games 8/11 11/8 both tight, and both players making there mark with there top racket skills. Midway through the 3rd, errors started to creep in from both players, until Ben came through to take the 3rd11/9, then making his seeding count to take the 4th and the match 11/2. 7/11 11/8 11/9 11/2

On the court next to this was “The only way is Essex lad” Rory Pennell v James Simpson, Penell seemed to cruise through the 1st and 4th game, but his opponent made it harder for him in the second with Simpson taking it 7/11, then battled in the third to push Pennell to squeeze the 3rd 13/11. 11/4 11/7 11/13 11/2

The rest of the first session included Phil Nightingale v Adam Giles, with Nightingale just squeezing it 3-2. 11/4 5/11 10/12 11/4 11/6

Adil Maqbool was to play Brandon Hanley , with Maqbool taking the match 3-1, the last two games Hanley battles through to keep the scores quite close, but Maqbool just being able to edge the match. 4/11 11-5 11-7 11-9

Micheal Wood v Reuben Phillips another 3-1 victory in the BSPA. With Wood beating the young Reuben Phillips 11/4 8/11 11/7 11/3.

Next on court was Robert Dadds v Mick Biggs, with Dadds having a brutal match the night before against the 2nd coach at the Lee-on-the-Solent Martyn Collins-Ballands! Biggs was able to ease out a relatively easy 3-0 over the young Dadds. 11-8 11-1 11-4

Then James Snell v Clive London, Snell sneaked this close match 11/13 11/1 11/4 5/11 11/6

Last on was Chris Truswell v Jamie Matthews, the world deaf squash champion. Matthews finding it difficult against the on form Truswell, with Truswell taking the match 3-0, 11-6 11-4 11-1.


This afternoon's rest seems to of worked for Eddie Charlton, as he moved very quickly on to the ball and not letting Kirby settle to take the first game, 2nd game Kirby takes a early lead floating the ball around, then following it up by taking the ball in short . Eddie reels him in so they are level which carries on nip and tuck until Kirby takes the game to make the games level at 1-1. Eddie takes the third , Kirby puts in great effort in the fourth but to no avail Eddie wins in four. 11/3 13/15 11/5 11/5

On court 5 Adil Maqbool v Andrew Birks. Can Andrew nullify the shot maker, Adil top international junior. Errors coming in to play from Adil in the third giving Andrew an easy 3rd game. A word from Ben Ford and Adil comes out putting more drops in from the front of the court. Two lucky bounces in the two back corners from Andrew, and he puts the match back in his favour to eventually take the match 3-1. 12/10 5/11 1/11 8/11

Next on was Tim Vail v Steve Siveter. A cross court nick off the serve sets the tone for the first game, no sapping rollies from either player, and Tim running away with the first game.

the 2nd starts for the better for Steve, precision straight drops to take a 5-1 lead, Tim fights back and two volley boasts in the tin to make the score 9-9. A top fore hand volley kill from Tim 10-10, then a great fore hand drive dying in the back corners from Steve for him to get his first game ball, and then a forehand drop for him to take the game to make it 1-1. Game on?

Tim raises his game to take an almost flawless 3rd game, Steve is now really battling to stay in this match and a great back hand volley drop at 11/10 enables him to take the match to 2-2. 5th and final game, early exchanges for Tim to find good length and good shots from the front, to give him a 5-1 lead, a cross court drop from Steve lets him get back in to the game to reach 5-5.

Then hand out 6-5 Tim, 7-5, 8-5, handout 8-6, 8-7. Handout Tim again 9-7,handout 9-8. Tim then reaches match ball, and plays a good back drop to take the match.

On court five James Snell v Phil Nightingale. James is of a great win against Jan Koukal last week, and seems to be carrying the same sort of form in to this tournament winning 11/6 11/9 11/3

Andy Whipp showing what an experienced player he is against a very quick and mobile Micheal Wood, but with Andys shot selection and strong movement around the court he takes the match 3-0 11/5 11/5 11/7

Neil Hitchen v Chris Tasker-Grindley
Neil Hitchens didn’t let the Essex side down, with a convincing win over Chris Tasker- Grindley 11/6 11/6 11/7


The Solent Classic
20-22 November 2009
Men Only | Lee-on-Solent
 | Tim Vail |                         
2007 Event      2008 Event
22-Nov, Final:
BSPA Final

Azlan bt Wan Adnan    11/5, 11/8, 11/7

And so to the final on a blustery day in Lee between no.1 seed Azlan and No.3 Wan

A close 1st game with both players moving the ball around the court with speed and accuracy, but Azlan closes the game with some precision drops.

The 2nd start with some hard fought rallies and Azlan taking a 6-3 read; good exchanges down the backhand wall using height and weight of shot, but with Azlan staying in control. Two fortunate bounces and Wan comes back to 6-9. A B/h volley kill from Wan and an error from Azlan makes it 8-8, but Azlan holds out to take the 2nd 11/8.

The 3rd starts with Azlan becoming more dominant as the game goes on. At 6-10 a delightful game of who can drop the ball the lowest which Wan wins, but Azlan wins the next point to win 3-0.

21-Nov, Quarters & Semis:
Solent Classic 2009

Welcome to Lee on another bright sunny day. Well after a frenetic morning of graded tournament squash inspired from yesterday’s main event rounds.

To quote a boxing term – let’s get ready to rumble on the Solent.

We are ready for the first of the quarter finals. On court five we have Steve Siveter v Scott Handley and on court 6 we Azlan Iskandar v Alex Phillips.

BSPA Solent Classic Quarter-Finals:

Azlan Iskandar bt Alex Phillips 11/4, 11/8, 11/4

On court 6 Azlan starts the match not in full flow with Alex striking the ball well in his usual skilful manner but as he ploughs through to take the first game 11/4.

Second game - this could be the third gear of the Lamborghini from Malaysia moving on to the ball with speed and accuracy taking the game to the front with no margin of error probably the furthest Alex has been up the court, taking the game 11/8. Azlan then up into fourth gear to take the third 11/4.

Scott Handley bt Steve Siveter  11/7, 11/6, 14/12

Just reading between the lines it looks like Steve and Scott’s game could be well contested by both players. The first game which Scott wins 11/7. He seems to have adjusted well to Steve’s low game, getting Steve to retrieve a lot more rather than making the play.

Steve starts to play a few two wall boasts which makes Scott move to the front with more severity but he seems to handle it and takes the second 11/6. Steve hanging in big time in the third 11 all Scott hits the tin with a drop 12/11 to Steve but Scott hangs in with a back hand drop shot and finally Scott runs out winning 13/11 taking the match 3/0.

Wan Adnan bt James Huang 11/5, 18/16, 11/7

On court six we have unknown James Huang who came through late last night against Ben Coleman. And Wan Adnan who is in his designer t-shirt to show off his tan, looking to be favourite James seems to be feeling the effects of last night’s match. First game to Wan – 11/3.

James seems to have go the blood flowing in the second keeping neck a neck with Wan but the game going to Wan 18/16.

Into the third game, Wan with some excellent retrieving and counter drops going on to take the match 3/0.

Tim Vail bt Phil Nightingale  14/12, 11/7, 11/8

Next up on court five we have the long and the short – Phil Nightingale and Tim Vail. Who must be taking this seriously as he has never been seen to stretch before! Could this be a bit of the number one seed rubbing off on him?

The first game starts to develop with Phil taking the ball into the front and Tim hanging on to the game with some precision lobs and forcing some loose shots from Phil – game to Tim 12/10.

Another tight game with Tim starting to hit those trademark kills to take the second 11/7.

In the third game there was consistently good play from Phil but he could not overcome the magic shots and racket technique that Tim put forth. Tim goes through to the semis.


Azlan Iskandar bt Scott Handley 12/10, 11/4, 11/6

Down to the semi-finals, Azlan and Scott. I’ve been reminded by some people in the crowd that Scott has beaten Azlan on numerous occasions! Scott producing some of his best squash in the open game staying with Azlan all the way, only for Azlan to take it 12/10.

Good opening rallies with Azlan taking the ball short across Scott and taking two cheap points giving Azlan a 4/2 league. Scott re-focuses, getting more height on the ball but some beautiful straight shots from Azlan taking him 11/4 to win the game.

Into the third, “this is top-ten stuff” is the cry from Scott – think he could be right as Azlan runs out a 3/0 winner. A quote from Scott “I think I bottled it, I felt I could have pushed through a bit more. But his counter-stuff made a big difference. I’m a bit disappointed but he is 13th in the world and he showed why. Well played Azlan”. I think we could look out for a rekindled Scott in the future.

Wan Adnan bt Tim Vail  11/8, 11/9, 1/11, 11/5

Down to the last semi-final, Wan v Tim. This could be interesting. Tim into an early lead only for Wan to drag it back 11/8. The same in the second, Tim in the lead 7/6. A great back-hand straight kill from Wan to take it to 7/7 and then a very disputed point to Wan to take an 8/7 lead. A great top spin drop from Tim 8/8 and then a fiercely contested stroke - 10/9. For-hand kill, game to Wan 11/9. Could this be it?! Tim takes the third 11/1 – wow! Wan then comes out firing in the fourth to take a 6/1 advantage and puts in some super drops 11/5. Match 3/1.






BSPA Solent Classic Round 2

Azlan Iskandar v Kirby Sinclair 11/2 11/1 11/2 (18mins)

Lamborghini like showing why he’s no.1 seed and 13 in the world against Kirby Sinclair who was showing the effects of a 5 setter earlier in the day and losing easily 3-0.

Alex Phillips v Chris Rand 11/7 11/8 11/8 (24mins)

Now to the local derby. Alex takes the 1st after being 5-0 down with Chris finding the tin on numerous occasions. The 2nd goes the same way, “c’mon Chris” shout goes out from the Lee Mafia hoping to see their player rise up but Alex has different ideas and shuts the door to win 3-0

Steve Siveter v Mick Biggs 11/3 9/11 11/5 11/5 (35mins)

Steve was really quick out of the blocks tonight not letting Mick settle keeping the ball low and tight to the front and back taking the 1st game 11-3. A better 2nd game for Mick 9-9, Steve returns into the tin and Mick wins the game with a low f/h boast. A few errors creep into Mick’s game and Steve is still very steady and takes the 3rd and the same pattern follows in the 4th for Steve to win 3-1.

Scott Handley v Brandon Hanley 8/11 11/3 11/4 11/6

Brandon takes advantage of a slow starting Scott to take the 1st. Scott comes back to win the 2nd game 11-3 really easily, Scott then shows why he has a been a top ranked player for so long moving Brandon all over the court and tiring him to take a comfortable 3-1 win. Not a good day to for Brandon to leave his inhaler at home as he said to me afterwards.

Wan Adnam v Jason Pike 11/3 11/5 11/6 (17mins)

Wan looking untroubled in the 1st game playing with accuracy and strong movement not letting Jason settle into his hard hitting game. Wan strolls to a 3-0 win

Ben Coleman v James Chang 8/11 4/11 12/10 11/5 11/9 (59mins)

And so to the last match of the day Ben’s british junior karate years shining through his combative approach never say die attitude takes the 1st 11-8. Ben races to a 7-1 lead in the 2nd and then some well contested rallies from both but Ben wins 11-4. James fighting for his life goes 3-0 up playing with much more conviction unlike the previous 2 games. They get through to 10-10 but James sneaks it 12-10. Good opening exchanges early doors of the 4th game but James pulls away to take it 11-5 with some uncharacteristic errors from Ben. So to the 5th and final game now the crowd are getting divided as both players are making their mark with fantastic exchanges at the front. Why does the game of the day always have to be the last, james gets through 11-9, well played to both players with an hour of great squash.

Phil Nightingale v Richard Birks 11/8 11/4 8/11 12/10 (27mins)

Apologies to Phil as only got to see the last game. He got home 12-10 in the 4th

Tim Vail v Jamie Matthews 11/3 11/7 11/1 (16mins)

Lee’s very own head coach and sussex and hants top player vs Jamie Matthews World Deaf Squash Champion. C’mon guv’nor is the cry from his assistant coach high in the crowd. The Vole straight into the stride and not letting Jamie get a sniff of the ball, nicks coming in form all angles, it mut be something in the sea air 11-2. Jamie starts to get into the 2nd game managing to get past Tim but it didn’t last too long as it quickly went away from Jamie as did the 3rd.

Welcome to sunny Lee for the first BSPA tournament of the season.
Martin Collins-Ballands reports

mick biggs v ryan jewer , it was back to business mick biggs today looking in good form controlling his opening match against ryan and taking the match 3-0.

unlucky draw for gary nesbitt coming up against an inform steve siveter, gary having to retrieve for a lot of the match with steve keeping gary at full stretch for 3 0 win. could be an intresting match tonite against mick.

alex phillipsv rory Pennell this looking to be the match of the round if both players bring their game to the party. 1st game alex turns up but no rory half way through the 2nd rory began to find his rythym and took the game 11 8 but after that alex took control and the match 3 1.

brandon handley v abid khan Brandon arriving with all his shots of deception and accompanied by his height and reach made the games very difficult for abid Brandon taking the match 3 0.

simon white v Kirby Sinclair, aussie Kirby showing good racket skills and crafty court awareness (simon's words) against simon to take a tight first game and then a second .is there a comeback from simon yes there is taking the next two 11 9 ,11 6 and so to a 5th Kirby taking an early lead and never looking back taking the game 11 7.

niall engerer v Richard birks Richard the more mature b.s.p.a player against niall who is making head roads in the junior ranks Richard who takes a 2 0 lead just takes his foot of the gas but that’s just enough to let niall playing with bundles of energy to take the next two could this be an upset? No Richard steadies the ship and wins 11 6 to take the match 3 2.

ben coleman v ahmed el-refe ahmed being the x-factors jamie archer look alike perhaps hoping simon cowells marking, against a very fast and mobile ben coleman who now in his final year of the juniors first two games quite tight going in favour of ben and then pulling away in the third and taking the match 3 0.