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2007-2008 Season > Match Reports > Modern B v Modern A
Modern B v Modern A
Modern B v Modern A
The A team had a plan, firstly they had to play their strongest side and secondly the A team's youngest player (Trott) should deliberately play the B team's biggest threat (Birch) first, go to five and tire him out before he played Alsop and McConnell. Part A was easy to achieve apart from Alsop not being able to cough up the cash to sign on Des Douglas so had to once again rely on Trott. Part B impossible as the B team put on Nathan Forbes first and McConnell, in the absence of Alsop who was running late again, did a good impression of Kenny Roger's "Coward of the County" by saying "if I play him first I could lose and the league will be gone after 1 match". Trott remembering his Henry V English A level stepped into the breach and dispatched Forbes 4, 6 & 4 to get the A team moving.

At this time Alsop arrived and inquired why the plan wasn't being followed, unfortunately he received a reply similar to Epping Brunt. McConnell took on Tex Avery and poor old Avery was another to fall into the classic trap of thinking McConnell spun the ball, 3-0 McConnell. Alsop then took on Birch and this was a nerve wracker as Birch simply smashed anything Alsop tried in the first leg to take it 11-3. He tried the same tactics in leg 2 and missed to lose 11-5, but steadied up in leg 3 to take it 11-8. Alsop then led in the 4th and by this time Trott had already dispatched a dispirited Avery 3, 5, & 0. Alsop's nerves were fraught but he held on to take the leg 11-8. Time for some quick tactics which were simply stop letting him slap the backhand, move the ball to the middle, make him move. This sounded easy, lovely jubbly , which it was as Alsop led 7-2, however, this soon became 7-5, 8-7, and 10-9 before he finally won through in an exhausting encounter.

So it was 4-0 to the A team and Alsop after his scare was a convincing (though fortunate if you believe young Forbes) 3-0 winner over Nathan, whilst McConnell took on Birch. The first between Birch/McConnell involved more pushing than a good friend of Amy Winehouse would admit to, and McConnell took it by getting Birch's first loop back and aiming to tire him out by keeping the rallies going. The 2nd was won the same way but Birch was cannier in the third and picked his shots better only for McConnell to take a good lead in the 4th and hold out. The score was now 6-0.

Alsop cruised through the first two against Avery, somehow lost the third and then won the 4th, whilst all three games of McConnell/Forbes were loop/block/loop/block/miss, with Forbes obviously doing the looping. So the tally stood at 8-0.

Surely the title beckoned as when Trott last lost to Birch he was still in grey shorts (Trott that is), Sweet and Mud were top of the charts, Mick Harper had hair and John Alsop had grey and not white hair and probably Tiger Feet. The first two legs went to plan 4 and 6 to Trott, leg three 4 all and Birch starts blasting and Alsop/McConnell start fretting, the leg goes 11-8 to Birch. In the fourth leg it goes to 2-2, Birch still blasting but Trott replies with a couple of sneaky serves to get a three point cushion. Now 7-3 to Trott is it all over? Not quite as Birch pulls it back to 8-6 but an edge to Trott and a couple of winners later Modern A are 9-0 up.

So to the doubles Trott again partnered by the hapless McConnell (who I didn't realise was a famous actor who starred in Mutiny on the Bounty with Brando and looks just like he did when he died in 1987) versus Forbes/Avery. Well I'd like to say it was close but it wasn't and the A team took the title for about the 20th time and must surely be neck and neck with St Neots in the history of the league.

McConnell is definitely buying a new bat in the summer in time for next year when he can play County Vets for Beds against Rookie Vet Trott playing for Northants and Alsop is looking for a Tardis style book to put down all the names of his stupid losses.
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