I LOVE PSA…
sue me, alright?
Yes, exhibition matches are great fun, wouldn’t miss them to save my life,
the atmosphere is great, spectators are impressed, you meet all your
mates, but a PSA event (WISPA ditto), an official event, has an edge to
I saw all the Canary Wharf events, the first one with the surprise victory
of James Willstrop aged 20 against Thierry Lincou in up to 9 scoring and 7
games. Then last year, a superb final where Whity came back from 2/0
against Intense Anthony to win the second Canary Wharf.
But this year... It was... more electric, more life and death, more... PSA.
The fact that it was so close to both the British and French Nationals
meant that certain players were a “bit” more tired than others, and no
offence to Alex Gough who could have won the match anyway, the exhausted
new British Champion Nick Matthew didn’t have much chance. Same difference
for Lee Beachill who made a “quick” exit against top form Peter Nicol.
No one was really expecting Karim Darwish, a brilliant player but
sometimes with some shortness of fitness, to get through to the semis, and
he went pretty close to taking Anthony out. And you punters, how many of
you put money on Thierry Lincou beating his bogey player 3/0….
The final was also great. A determined but finally exhausted Ricketts
against a fresher and maybe more hungry for victory former world number
one Lincou. Once again, not sure how many would have put money on the
Frenchman to win at the start of the event….
Yes, a real success, the 2006 Canary Wharf event was….
The crowd came in great numbers, and there was a “New York” feel to the
place. Why New York? Because it’s the only tournament I’ve ever been to
where all the seats are taken from the first round.
The compere, Mr Alan Thatcher was as professional as ever, and provided
the press with invaluable information as the matches finished. Linda
Davie, perfect tournament referee, was as busy a bee as ever, and this
year, her colleagues John Massarella, Wendy Danzey, Roy Gingell and Jason
Foster (plus Peter Laurence and Mary Scott-Miller in Wimbledon for the
qualifier) provided a superb refereeing.
Angus ensured the well being of all the people involved in the event, The
Boss, in the background, working away both on his squash and on the event,
Ben Garner, brother of, and Andy Bunting, from Prince, giving a hand to
sell tickets, distribute badges, handle all floor requirement, and the
usual suspects, drivers, volunteers, Pat, Matt, John, Ken, etc…. And the
Canary Wharf Events staff, efficient as ever.
But sorry, guys, the winner is Mr Tim Garner. Still calm in the tempest of
requests, whinging and demands coming from the four corners of the Winter
Garden, always smiling, never apparently stressed, he is the heart and
soul of Eventis. I do declare he is a gem of a man, of a professional, and
of a friend.
In the words of the sponsor …… during the presentation, “let’s make this
event better and bigger next year”.
Well, that one was good enough for me.
See you next year…