Title-chasing East Anglia beat champions to storm clear at top of Norfolk Premier Division


Squash. - Credit: Archant

East Anglia have moved into a 10-point lead over Diss at the top of the Premier Division of the Norfolk SRA Squash League following their 17-5 victory this week over champions Potters.

East Anglia have still got to host Diss in a rearranged match and whoever wins this could well take the title. East Anglia II, meanwhile were not so successful and remain in the second relegation spot after losing 16-6 at home to Broadland. In a rearranged match Bannatyne's beat Potters, who were without Jamie Goodrich, 18-6. Bannatyne's also went on to win 17-7 against bottom of the table Bob Carter Centre to consolidate their third place in the league.

In Division One Barnham Broom moved to within nine points of the leaders North Walsham after winning 18-5 away to Bannatyne's II. Beccles won their rearranged match against bottom of the table Broadland III 20-4 in Division Two but then went on to lose 14-10 at home to Rossi Rebels.

The big match in Division Three was at Barnham Broom where Barnham Broom III were narrowly beaten 16-10 by top of the table Bannatyne's III. The Bannatyne's team are now well clear at the top of the table but Barnham and Bob Carter Centre II, whose match at Cromer was postponed, are level on points in second and third places. In the mid-table match UEA II beat Fakenham II 14-9.

Finally bottom of the table Oasis won 15-6 at Fleggburgh against Broadland Hunter. Keane Pye, Ben Serruys and Dave Horrex all won their matches 3-1 while Richard Hatch was too strong at number one.

- Having won nine Norfolk Closed titles between them since 1999 it was no surprise that this year's final featured defending champion Jamie Goodrich of Potters and David Youngs of East Anglia.

Youngs, who was seeded at number three and had previously announced his retirement from tournament squash, played exceptionally well but Goodrich was too good and clinched his fourth title with a 11-7, 11-7, 11-7 victory. In the semis Goodrich overcame the 2011-12 champion and number four seed, James Pickles of Broadland 11-9, 9-11, 8-11, 11-1, 11-8 while Youngs defeated the number seven seed and 2005-06 champion Matthew Bolt of North Walsham 11-4, 14-12, 10-12, 11-9.

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The Ladies championship was won for the second time by Nicky Green of Fakenham, 19 years after her only previous success. In the final she was too strong and too experienced for the highly promising Norfolk Under 15 champion Katie Cox, 13, of Broadland, coming out on top 11-4, 11-4, 11-5.

Rob Hambrook of Potters won his first county title when he beat the 2010-11 veterans champion Robin Chipperfield 11-5, 11-2, 11-6, to win while the Vintage title went to Simon Cullum of East Anglia who added to his vets title of 11 years ago by beating David Cook of Potters 11-9, 11-6 ,11-5. Martin Pearse of North Norfolk won two more titles as he beat both Pieter Bothma of Potters and Clive Slater of Barnham Broom 3-0 in the finals of the Over 60 and Over 65 events while Jordan Creed of Bannatyne's beat Tom Hunt of Diss 11-5, 12-10, 11-6 in the under-23 final. In the two subsidiary events young Hunt showed that he could qualify for the main event next year as he narrowly lost the B final to the veteran Chipperfield 15-17, 11-4, 3-11, 11-7, 9-11 while another youngster, Connor Doy of Fakenham comfortably beat the Norfolk League Secretary Kevin Blake of North Norfolk in straight games in the C final.