On a sunny Sunday in September, High Wycombe welcomed Hurlingham for the semi-final of the Longman Cup. Raghu Iyer and Jonathan Pound paired up for the morning's doubles fixture on lawn 1. They delivered an inspired performance to secure a comfortable 26-8 win. Robin Morrison and Ed Olhausen were involved in two hotly contested singles matches on lawn 2. With time running out, Ed finally managed to reach the finish line with a 26-17 win. Robin couldn't quite find his usual winning form, losing 16-20.
The semi-final was finely balanced with High Wycombe holding a slender 2-1 lead at the half-way point.
The afternoon matches were underway. After a shaky start, Ed hit a purple patch and with some confident and composed break-building, quickly wrapped up his game with a 26-0 win. 3-1. Raghu's game was next to finish but despite his best efforts he suffered a 13-26 loss. 3-2.
With the remaining two games being far from in the bag, tension levels were reaching boiling point. Both Robin and Jonathan had built up solid leads, but their opponents were steadily clawing their way back. As the clock ticked on, we knew that one win out of the remaining two singles matches would be enough to book our place in the final.
Despite the pressure, Jonathan certainly didn't show it, which was even more impressive given his lack of match play experience. With some patient and shrewd safety play, Jonathan managed to hold on to his lead, enjoying a 22-20 win. Phew!!! HWCC were through to the final!!
But Robin didn't know this as he headed into the last few minutes of his match. Having built a strong lead, he calmly and intelligently managed the closing stages of his game to secure a 25-18 win giving HWCC a 5-2 victory.
Congratulations to the players! Bring on the final!
P.S. Keith Pound, supporting, needs a new set of finger nails.
P.P.S. The action photographer arrived after Raghu and Ed had finished their games - sorry.