Published 03/22/2018 23:40 by Carl Furness.
Premier Div match report MK Bandits v GR Kings
With only 6 teams in the Prem this season and going by last season's results, it looked like Bandits were only ever going to be bottom. Forecasts were that they would struggle to win a game all season.
There only positive was the signing of the young Jamie Hendy who had a good season in Div 1 last year. But the step up to the Prem is a very big one.
Game 1 was Dave Buckley v Mark Beaumont (who is also new to the Prem after a comeback in Div2 last season) Mark many years ago was one of the best players MK has ever had. But we all know it is hard to come back after 20+ years away.
There weren't many rallies in this game, with both players winning points on serve or 3rd ball. I think in hindsight they were both just warming up.
Dave winning in 4 ends so a good start for Bandits.
Game 2 saw Jamie Hendy on his debut v Guy Chieff SparrowGuy
Jamie playing with no nerves and winning straight 8,8,2
2-0 to Bandits a nice surprise.
Game 3 was captain Michael Wilkins v Nick Howard Although Michael managed to win the 1st end Nick was far to consistent. Not just in retrieving Michael's attacking shots, but also his devastating forehand winners. Score 7,-6,-8,-7
The decision for the doubles was whether to play Jamie with Michael or play a trusted pairing of Michael and Dave. Michael decided on the latter and it paid off winning 5,5,-12,5
3-1 to Bandits good start but could it continue.
Game 4 was Jamie Hendy v Mark Beaumont with a good win for Mark 3,-7,6,6 This got Kings back into it and a possible draw on the cards
Next was Dave v Nick with the expected outcome, although Dave
made it a very close game. Nick won in a 3 dueces 10,14,10
3-3 Bandits now hanging on and Kings looking for the win.
Game 7 was Michael v Guy Michael winning in 4 ends to regain the lead 6,6,-7,8
4-3 Bandits Getting closer to a draw which would have been a good result for Bandits.
Game 8 was Jamie Hendy v Nick Howard which on paper was a win for Nick. But after 4 ends it was tied 2-2. In the final end it was nip and tuck. But Nick had the edge. But Jamie came back in the last few points to snatch an outstanding win 12-10.
5-3 Bandits and a draw at least (better than I had hoped for)
Game 9 Michael v Mark. There was some very good rallies in this game and Mark turned back the clock with some very good points. But Michael eventually winning -10,8,8,7 in a game that was much closer than the score suggests.
Last game saw Dave v Guy with Dave dispatching Guy 7,5,8
Final score 7-3 to Bandits.
All I can say is, I have been playing for 51 years and I didn't expect that result. I was hoping for a draw at best, but a win gives us a very good start to the new campaign.
That might turn out to be our only win of the season. But at least it is a good start.