Border Reivers Triumph in Pre-season Clash with Strathgryffe Squash Club

Galashiels, Scotland — In a thrilling pre-season squash showdown, Border Reivers faced off against Strathgryffe Squash Club, delivering an evening filled with intense competition and impressive displays of skill. Hailing from Houston in Glasgow, Strathgryffe made the journey to Galashiels for this high-stakes challenge match as they gear up for the upcoming West of Scotland Squash league season.

The evening’s action commenced with a clash between Nick Jupp of Border Reivers and the youthful Oliver Currie of Strathgryffe. Both players were in their debut season for their respective teams, and the encounter provided a glimpse of the competition they will face in the leagues. Jupp showed his mettle by securing a victory with a score of 15-5, 15-6, 15-6, capitalizing on a quick start that kept Currie at bay.

The spotlight then shifted to the match of the night, featuring Reivers’ South African-born Derek Noffke against Strathgryffe’s teenage sensation, Craig Rafferty. Rafferty took an early 2-1 lead with scores of 13-15, 15-8, and 15-13, but Noffke, drawing from his 40 years of squash experience, launched a valiant comeback, taking the fourth set 15-8. The decider turned into an epic battle of skill and strategy, with Noffke’s experience and craftiness going up against Rafferty’s relentless energy and agility. The match reached a thrilling 13-13 stalemate before Noffke capitalized on Rafferty’s momentary lapse in concentration, securing the final two points for a hard-fought 3-2 victory.

In other matches, Border Reivers’ captain, Del Sharratt, emerged victorious in a captivating contest against Alan Rafferty, winning 3-0 (15-8, 15-11, 15-11). The left-handed duel between the two players added an intriguing twist to the match, as serves and rallies predominantly occurred on the right-hand side of the court. Pat Spence, a stalwart of the Reivers from Peebles, put in a commanding performance against Steve Carson, securing a 3-0 win (15-5, 15-8, 15-13). The top seeds continued to shine for the Borderers, with Sam Collin prevailing over Strathgryffe’s Michael Currie in a closely contested match that ended 3-0, although each point was hard-earned.

The evening concluded with Border Reivers securing a resounding 18-2 victory, with the match results as follows:

  • Sam Collin 3-0 Michael Currie
  • Del Sharratt 3-0 Alan Rafferty
  • Pat Spence 3-0 Steve Carson
  • Derek Noffke 3-2 Craig Rafferty
  • Nick Jupp 3-0 Oliver Currie

Reivers’ captain, Del Sharratt, summed up the night, stating, “This was not as straightforward as the scores suggest. We all had to battle for the victories. It’s great to see youngsters like Oliver and Craig getting involved in Team Squash, and I have no doubt they will win plenty of matches in the West Leagues. This will be our final warm-up before the season starts, and it was confidence-boosting to go into the season off a victory.”

The clash between Border Reivers and Strathgryffe Squash Club showcased the competitive spirit and dedication of these players as they prepare to embark on another exciting season of squash in Scotland.