Last night (21st Jan) the John Ford Quarter Finals were held at Sandbach Boys School. Sadly one team (Holmes Chapel) had to withdraw leaving Canute with a bye to the semi final. That left us three matches: Crosses A v Weaverham, Goostrey v Northwich and Crosses B v Knutsford. As always there was a tremendous standard of badminton with every point contested as is the essence of John Ford. Also, as usual, there was a mix of player standard from relative beginner to seasoned professional. With judicious handicapping this is what makes John Ford so entertaining. This is what happened:
Crosses A fielded an experienced team with only Simon Geary as a relative new comer to the competition. Simon is an ardent Leeds United and Leeds Rhinos fan so with difficulty one handicapper had to maintain absolute discretion in difficult circumstances. That done, Crosses were awarded 90 points handicap against what is the definitive consistency of Weaverham. As expected Weaverham dominated the match losing only 4 of the 18 games. Within the games the scores went much to forecast, with the exception of (once again) an inspired effort on the Chairman's part to take 17 points in one mixed game. The difference in scores before handicap was 93 in favour of Weaverham so the handicap was just short of that needed. Weaverham progress by 3 points (0.16 per game). This morning Crosses will be asking where those 3 points went. Veteran campaigners David Sumner and Alan Holmes salvaged only 10 points in their two games with Kevin Asley and Andrew Lewis - I wonder!!
Goostrey and Northwich was a great battle. Again two experienced sides went toe to toe. Handicapping could only separate them by 20 points so an hard-fought affair was predicted. So it turned out to be. Four of the events were halved and one went 21-20, 21-20. Goostrey got to 351 points and Northwich 297. So even with a 20 point bonus Northwich fell just short by 34 points (2 per game)
In the other Crosses match versus Knutsford we had two teams fielding several inexperienced players. Knutsford (as predicted) were the stronger team on paper to the tune of 133 points handicap given to Crosses. Knutsford dominated in terms of games winning 15-3. Their score before handicap was 363 to Crosses 254. With Handicap that edged Crosses in front by 24 points - just over 1 per game.
So congratulations to the successful semi finalists and we look forward to another good night next month.