A loss 3-1, 11/9 4/11 7/11 8/11, but a wonderful weekend of squash. Unfortunately David Palmer was too strong for me today and in all honesty there is no shame losing to a player of his caliber, Former World No. 1 and two time World Champion. Of course it’s never fun losing, but I played well and I was beaten by a better player on the day, so I’m extremely happy with the match and the tournament. There were no shenanigans or blocking during the match, it was perfectly clean and Palmer won fair and square. It just means I have to get fitter and stronger if I want to earn myself a victory against him next time.
I felt relaxed as I went on court to warm up and as soon as we started hitting the ball I was thinking, wow, this ball is flying. This could make things very interesting for me. It was a bit scrappy to start with, with the ball flying around the court and I didn’t actually mind it. The pace was high, but the rallies I felt weren’t too extended, which is what I was trying to stay away from. I didn’t feel like I was out of my depth at all and my confidence grew. The ball was ricocheting like a bullet, which didn’t allow me too much time to think, so that I could just react and let my body do what it’s been doing for so long. I won the first game 11/9.
It’s a shame that Palmer uses his brain so well, because he totally changed up how he was playing in the second game and started taking the pace off the ball, which I don’t like. It gives me too much time to think. It certainly rattled me and I was not happy with how I played the second game at all. Palmer dominated the “T” and just had me moving around the court and I felt like a slug. I didn’t feel like I was moving or reading him well and was getting frustrated. I lost that game very easily 4/11.
I wanted to try and lift the intensity again and try and suck him back into hitting the ball hard with me, but he kept his control and composure and the balls that I was firing in hard and fast were too short. He was still able to cut the balls off and work me around the court with what I felt was ease. My head was much better in that game, but I still ended up losing 7/11.
I figured for the fourth game, well if I’m not hitting great shots, I might as well get a good workout. So I went into the game determined to chase down every ball and see what happens. It ended up working out quite well. I was working ridiculously hard, scrambling around and managed to pull a few rallies together. I felt like I was back in the match again. I was exhausted, but hanging in there and was quite confident up to 8/8 where I thought I might be able to win that game, but either Palmer lifted into another gear or I dropped off a little I can’t say…………….I’ll just say Palmer stepped up a gear From 8/8 it went pretty quickly to 8/11 and even though I made a valiant, albeit once again unsuccessful, diving attempt the match was over.
So I’m a little bruised and battered, but overall extremely happy with the weekend and also on becoming the 2013 PST World Championship Finalist.
I would like to thank everyone for their support and kinds words before and after my matches this weekend. I’d also like to thank everyone that took the time out of their days to watch me play. l hope everyone enjoyed the weekend of matches as much as I did.