Max Trimble scooped the pool, taking both doubles and singles titles at the Ivan Pohe Memorial Doubles and McCoy and Thomas Kamo Open Singles Squash tournament last weekend.
The tournament, noted for the lighthearted mood created by players dressing up to play their doubles matches, was so well supported that matches overflowed to the Whangarei Squash Club courts as well.
A number of visitors from other provinces, including travellers from the Wanganui, Eltham, Manurewa, Panmure, Mt Maunganui and Lugton Park (Waikato) clubs, added interest to both the singles and doubles draws, as players turned out in record numbers to the Kamo Rugby and Squash Club for the latest of Squash Northland’s tournaments.
The Ivan Pohe Memorial Doubles final provided a fabulous exhibition of top level squash as Max Trimble (a Whangarei local now playing at Lugton Park) teamed up with Milton Brookland to defend their 2015 title. The title, a bit of a family affair, was no foregone conclusion however, with A1 graded Luke Jones (from Palmerston North but resident in Whangarei) and Brookland’s sister Olivia, making them scrap for every point in the match, which went to a deciding third set.
Mr Pohe’s sister Donna Wasson presented the trophy at Saturday evenings doubles prizegiving.
In Sundays Mens Open singles final, top seed Trimble met top Kamo player Bruce Smith, and while Smith showed his usual consistent hard hitting and retrieval skill, the polish and fitness of Trimble was too much on this occasion.
Travellers Nathan Wall, Murray Care, Mike Hebditch and Carl Matthews made their long trip to Kamo worthwhile, with a handful of five set matches throughout the weekend.
In the Ladies Open final Mackenzie Johnson put up a commendable fight against A graded Sacha Pou Tito, with the final score of 15/8. 16/14, 15/12 indicating that she will be a real threat before too long. Five set finals in both the special plate, and plate matches, also made for some great watching, with Northland team mate Iyra Stewart overcoming Annmarie Holst 17/15 9/15 15/13 9/15 15/9 to take third place. Kaitaia’s Cindy Hassan also took five sets to take the victory from Kate Wachop in the plate.
The longest finals tussle, although only a four set match, came in the Ladies Division One final. After a tough Friday night start when she scraped through against Sharon McDonald 13/15 17/15 13/15 15/6 15/5, second seed Julie Geange, from Dargaville, had to work hard for Saturdays 3 set win over Catherine Powdrell before treating the crowd to an epic 16/14 15/12 13/15 20/18 win over Tracey Klaricich.
Experience overcame youth, when third seed Neil Lewis from Mangakahia toppled Manaia’s Riley-Jack Vette Blomquist in Mens Division One. In this division the most court time was taken by ex Kamo player, Greg Prinsloo – now in Central Districts territory. Prinsloo came the closest to toppling Lewis from his prizewinning charge, before taking five sets to lose both his following matches. Tournament co-ordinator Gary Traill added to a marathon week of organisation with a couple of five set battles, including the removal of top seeded Kevin Austin on his way to winning the special plate.
The Ladies Division two final went with the seedings, with Debbie Pou Tito only just overcoming second seeded Racheal Morgan 15/10 6/15 13/15 16/14 15/12. The Special Plate final between Pippa Saunders and Shea Ferguson provided an indication of the competition within Northland’s junior girls ranks – Saunders winning 15/12 15/5 14/16 10/15 15/7.
Whangarei Boys High School Squash team mates Devlin Gurr (seeded fifth) from Mid Western and Manaia’s Ned Saunders were Mens Division two finalists, with Gurr the victor, Saunders having had a great five set battle with Andrew Johnson in the semifinal.
Ladies division three provided a reward for another hard working junior Amy Brown, who justified her top seeding in beating Kerikeri’s very experienced Debbie Shepherd for the title.
Kamo juniors Chelsea Traill and Jordyn Chapman had their habitual five setter to decide the plate winner – Jordyn winning 15/10 11/15 11/15 15/13 15/12 on this occasion.
It took Manaia’s Freddie Jameson two five set wins to get to the Division three mens final, but after Brad Moselen took the first game of that match, Jameson was able to keep his nose in front and take the win.
The mens Fourth Division was won by second seed Flynn Venmore, with the match of that draw perhaps an earlier pool game when the ever improving Paddy Ferguson beat William Steenkamp 6/15 15/10 15/11 14/16 15/9.
Some mixed Junior Divisions rounded off the draws. In the First Mixed Division Ethan Hare and Olivia Rhodes won through to their final with two four set matches each, before Ethan powered his way through to a three set win in their final match.
Darcy Holwell and Hayden Turner had an epic final for the plate, which was won by Holwell 15/12 16/18 8/15 15/13 18/16.
Tane trail made Hugo Waldegrave work for his Consolation plate win – also a five set match.
The second Junior Mixed round robin draw was won by third seeded Hayley Rhodes, who must have slept well after a hard weekends work where she beat Alex Greatorex 4/15 13/15 15/10 1917 15/7, Izzy Jameson 6/15 15/12 15/8 13/15 15/13 and Lauren Storey in a close three set match on Sunday 15/11 15/12 15/12. A huge game on Friday night, won 11/15 15/9 15/11 14/16 16/14 by Lauren Storey over Alex Greatorex, proved the decider of the third place.
The Angus Player Series Lucky draw winner of $100 was Kamo player Catherine Powdrell.
Special Plate: Ari/Sacha
Cons Plate: Jerrie/Willie
Special Plate: Gary/Wayne
Cons Plate: Andrew/Rhyce
Special Plate: Eugene/Sharon
Cons Plate: Gemma/Gavin
Special Plate: Gary/Pippa
Cons Plate: Frank/Jill
Ladies Not So Serious
Dads, Lads and More
Winner: Max Trimble
R/up: Bruce Smith
Special Plate: Shayden Toka
Plate: Nathan Wall
Consolation Plate: Carl Matthews
Mens Division 1
Winner: Neil Lewis (in 3) 35th seed
R/up: Riley Jack Vette Blomquist
Special Plate: Gary Traill
Plate: Shane Vinac
Cons Plate: Bryce Phillips
Mens Division 2
Winner: Devlin Gurr
R/up: Ned Saunders
Special Plate: Andrew Johnson
Plate: Rhyce Brittain Clark
Cons Plate: Claude Shepherd
Mens Division 3
Winner: Freddie Jameson top seed 3/1
R/up: Brad Moselen
Special Plate: Jeremy Waldegrave
Cons Plate: Druvi Ghaniah
Mens Division 4
Winner: Flynn Venmore (2nd seed)
R/up Paddy Ferguson
Special Plate: James Griffin
Plate: Brian Smith (mangakahia)
Winner: Sacha Pou Tito
R/up: Mackenzie Johnson
Special Plate: Iyra Stewart
Plate: Cindy Hassan
Consolation Plate: Crystal Rhodes
Winner: Julie Geange
R/up: Tracey Klaricich
Special Plate: Catherine Powdrell
Plate: Sharon McDonald
Consolation Plate: Anna Moselen
Winner: Debbie Pou-Tito
R/up: Racheal Morgan
Special Plate: Pippa Saunders
Plate: Ella Holwell
Consolation Plate: Maddie Jameson
Winner: Amy Brown
R/up: Debbie Shepherd
Special Plate: Jo Mason
Plate: Jordyn Chapman
Consolation Plate: Rebecca Lichfield
Mixed Junior Divisions
Winner: Ethan Hare top seed
R/up: Olivia Rhodes
Special Plate: Oscar Waldegrave
Plate: Darcy Holwell
Consolation Plate: Hugo Waldegrave
Winner: Hayley Rhodes
R/up: Izzy Jameson 1st seed
3rd: Lauren Storey