Matchbericht ¦ Nationalliga B ¦ Schaffhausen I vs. Grasshopper I ¦ 1:3

After struggling to get a team together (Woodi seriously injured, Valpi still not free from fever despite various attempts to sweat it out just days before, Sergio [Sertschio] still recovering from a knee niggle after having won a masters series final) the team composed of Mäsi, Luc, Mic and replacement Fernando Ferreira finally arrived in the empty, dark and seemingly out of order squash center Schaffhausen. We learnt that it indeed will soon be lights out for good with Squash Schaffhausen and that their team (and only their team) has special permission to enter the building for home matches in their last IC season. First thing we did though is to check out whether there was a fridge with cold beer. Confirmed, what a relief.

But first the matches:
No 2 seated Mäsi started off against Nico Bruno. It was obvious that both players have seen better days. Mäsi reluctant to move much due to a tweak in the back and an unfit Nico Bruno seemed to have agreed before: let's go for kill shots only and not run. After a wild shoot out Mäsi surprisingly lost the first set. Once coach Luc revealed that Nico struggled even more with his movement and thus advised to not hit the tin but extend the rallies, Mäsi showed his class and secured the first match win 3/1.
Simultaneously no 3 seated Mic Hendriksen faced veteran (profession: butcher) Felix Stamm. Mic was on fire, and it seems no one ever told him that the goal in squash is to win the match not to bagel your opponent. But so he did in the first set. One could almost feel sorry for the almost 60 years old Felix. The hands and deception of Mic proved too much for Stamm also in sets 2 and 3, so the match was over in about 18 minutes, and a draw for GC was secured.

Mic's game was followed by the match between the no 4s of the teams. Our Portuguese wheeler-dealer (he sells squash balls and everything else one can imagine) made his 2019/2020 NLB debut and once again proved his unconventional badminton-style shot making abilities. Michi Tanner probably didn't expect Fernando to move so smoothly (almost farag-like!) and really didn't have much to offer in return. Clear 3/0 win for Fernando. Well done, the writer has a feeling that given the health status of the team, it will not be FF's last appearance for GC1.

Finally, Luc on position 1 came to play Daniel Hoffmann, a former pro and German Top Ten player. Any hope of Luc that Hoffmann had not yet recovered fully from a recent injury was destroyed quickly once Dani at score 7/7 raced away to win the first set. Hoffmann playing immaculate length and perfect drops on a very dead court, Luc soon knew that it will not be the day to get his first set ever against Dani, let alone to create a surprise win. That may or may not have been due to the fact that Fernando's win had already secured a win and 3 points for GC1.

GC1 now on secure rank 3 of the standings of Herren NLB Gruppe A. Great team and great fun as always.