Rise to the occasion?

Well it has been a strange 3 weeks.  One, we haven’t had much training due to unavailable facilities. Two, our match against SOAS (School of Oriental & African Studies) had been postponed and three, I dropped a 20kg gym plate on my right foot resulting in a 2 week injury. Not only was it painful physically, it was also painful mentally as there was a chance that I would miss the game against SOAS. Luckily for me, that match was postponed and I am back to match fitness. COME ON!!!

Yesterday we played RUMS (Royal Free & University College Medical) at home. Based on RUMS’ previous results, on paper, we were favourites. But that was only on paper. We still needed to bring out our A game; unfortunately, we didn’t bring our A game. Maybe it was due to not training properly and consistently. I was a little cautious of my recent injury as well. It was like there was a little Mohammed within my subconscious telling me that I could not TOETALLY move around the court freely and confidently. I must admit, I was a little rusty having not played for 2 weeks.

Enough of the excuses. So as usual our singles pair were strong and got us off to a flying start. 2 out of 2. Lesh and I didn’t get off to a flying start. As a matter of fact, we didn’t take off. 2-1. Our other doubles pair of Nizam and Tousif have struggled with their form this season; not winning a match in several weeks knocked their confidence. They needed a win, not only for the team but for themselves. The partnership hasn’t been performing to the best of its ability recently, but yesterday they regained their form and made the game look very easy. Tousif continued to be strong and Nizam decided to come to the party. 3-1.

Having lost our first match, Lesh and I needed to win to make it easier for the rest of the squad. I had to get rid of the little Mohammed lurking around in my head and I did. We smashed them; it wasn’t even close. 4-1.

So it came down to our last 3 matches. We were facing a possible upset or a win. Losing was not an option – even a draw would have been fatal to our title hopes and would probably be more painful than a loss. Unfortunately, Nizam and Tousif’s revival was short-lived. 4-2. Suddenly the nerves kicked in. BUT, once again our singles pair showed their mental strength. Chris scraped a win and Captain (Mansoor, we call him Captain) led the squad once again by upping his game when he needed to. His injection of pace was quite scary. 6-2.

The score doesn’t really reflect what actually happened on the courts. The score would suggest a comfortable win, but I assure you, dear reader, it was anything but. Speaking of scores, City Univeristy, our main rivals, were in a better position to win the title, even though our match win, loss or draw records are the same. Or were they?

Last night I checked the BUCS site to see how City got on. For us to win this title, we needed City to lose or draw their last game. WELL, they drew to SOAS!!!! GET IN THERE!!!!! All we have to do is win our last match and we bring the title home. BUT we have SOAS next. Interesting, very interesting. Be sure to tune in next time to see how we got on….

Mohammed

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