Boston Squash and Racketball Club

News 2014/15

All website updates and club affairs from the 2014/15 season can be found here.

Club Championships complete season - 27th April 2015

Boston Squash and Racketball Club staged their annual club championship final over the weekend - with Mark Hildred winning the men’s title for the 25th consecutive year.

Mark ensured the trophy has had his name on it for a quarter of a century as he beat Jake Fountain in the final.

This was the much-improved Fountain’s first final.

However, he had already played a tough five-set match in the age group finals and Hildred’s accuracy and shots proved too much for the first time finalist, with Hildred running out a 15-5, 15-6, 15-4 winner.

Earlier in the evening, Fountain had contested what was probably the best final of the night, narrowly losing out in the final of the age group over 35 event to Ady Proctor 15-12 in the fifth set in a very tight and hard fought encounter.

Hildred had already retained the over 45 title earlier in the evening by defeating Stuart Dunlop 3-0, Stuart also lost out to David Stones in the final of the over 55 championship, with Dave running out a 3-0 winner to retain his title.

Ruth Simpson retained her ladies’ title when Tina Favell had to withdraw due to illness.

Stuart Dunlop did come out victorious in the plate for the first round losers, defeating Jason Green in the final.

Completing the honours in these squash events was Sam Booth, who comfortably won the junior event.

In the racketball competitions, Ady retained his title by defeating Sam 3-0 in the final.

Stuart fourth final of the evening was in the over 45 racketball competition; again Stuart retained his title by defeating Andy Baxter 3-0 in the final.

The racketball plate was a closely-fought encounter in which Andy gained some compensation for his loss in the over 45 final by defeating Nick Merrison 3-2.

Finally, the most improved player award went to Perrie Broughton.

Sharpes and Tomlinson take Open crowns - 15th December 2014

Top seeds Charles Sharpes and Millie Tomlinson both secured straight-set final victories to win the men’s and women’s titles at the 18th annual BSPA Boston Open.

In the men’s first round, Dan McGinn and James Peach recorded two straight-set wins to kick proceedings off on Friday afternoon. Mark Hildred achieved his first win in the tournament which he first entered in 1997. He recovered from being 2-1 and 9/7 down against Jeremy Harris to book his place in the second round after an 11/2 win in the fifth, and Gordon Harpur beat Sam Burton. Lincolnshire’s Harry Falconer lost 3-0 against Stuart George, but forced his opponent into long rallies and games, as shown by the total match time of 42 minutes.

At 6pm a busy second session commenced with the last 16 of the men’s and women’s draws. This resulted in matches taking place across four courts simultaneously – including one featuring the actual tournament organiser - Mark Hildred, who lost to Patrick Rooney.

The other men’s second round matches saw 3/4 seed Bryan Byrne dispatch Josh Turmel, while Paul Rawden managed to squeeze a win into 35 minutes despite having trailed 2-0 to Will Harris. Dan McGinn was competitive but lost a close third game 14/12 as top seed Charles Sharpes progressed into the quarters without dropping a game. Keith Timms beat Tom Chitty in the longest match of the day (48 minutes).

James Peach was playing well and did pull the score back to 2-1 with a third game victory, but ultimately he was unable to cause an upset against second seed Doug Kempsell. In the final matches of the day, 3/4 seed Nick Mulvey survived a close first game to beat Stuart George 3-0, and Robert Dadds beat Gordon Harpur as the clock ticked to 9pm.

The first women’s match of the tournament saw 3/4 seed Lucy Beecroft beat Hannah Shipley in a quarter of an hour. In an absorbing game Kirsty West beat Ali Hemmingway, who was agonisingly close to taking the match to a deciding fifth set, losing 14/12 in the fourth.

Emma Custace-Baker and Mari Taylor were next on the hardback rainbow court, with the latter winning 3-1. Emily Peach and Alison Thomson [3/4] followed on, with the latter booking her place in the quarters while Olivia Howell beat the returning Roxy Keshavarz 3-0.

The quarters went to seeding on day two. Lucy Beecroft recorded another straight-set win, this time against Steph Walton. Jessica Davis had a slightly trickier quarter-final against Kirsty West, but recovered from a second set defeat to win a close third 12/10 and eventually the match 3-1.

Millie Tomlinson recorded a comfortable win over Mari Taylor: 11/5, 11/6, 11/1. Alison Thomson came out on top in the last quarter-final, beating Olivia Howell 3-1 in a match of careful, steady rallies with few unforced errors.

The men’s quarters followed immediately. Charles Sharpes again won without conceding a game, while Bryan Byrne booked his place against Sharpes in the semis courtesy of a 3-1 win.

In an intense match Patrick Rooney presented second seed Doug Kempsell with a much sterner test than the 19 points he won would suggest, but despite getting to within a point of Doug at 9/8 down in the third, a nick left him to exclaim “oh no” as Kempsell progressed into the last four. Difficult three-game wins were a theme, with Nick Mulvey also winning a high tempo quarter-final against Robert Dadds 3-0.

The evening’s semis saw the women back in action. Jessica Davis twice levelled after Lucy Beecroft had taken the lead in games, but Beecroft built on the good short game that she displayed in the first four games and was on top form to take the fifth set at a canter, 11/1.

The other women’s semi was one of attrition. Top seed Millie Tomlinson proved very hard to win points against. This combined with Alison Thomson’s endeavour to produce some viciously long rallies, as proven by the fact that the match time for Millie’s 3-0 victory was the same as the other, five-set women’s semi at 35 minutes.

In the first of the men’s semi-finals top seed Charles Sharpes beat Bryan Byrne 9/11, 11/8, 11/6, 15/13. The fourth set was certainly the best game of the event. After Charles came from behind to lead 2-1, Bryan was fighting to stay in the tournament – and it showed. With Sharpes on a matchball at 10/9 a magnificent rally was played which was over 50 shots long. After the top seed tinned the ball, a topsy-turvy tie-break concluded when Sharpes won two consecutive strokes to take the game 15/13 and the match 3-1. 52 minutes the match time.

The one match to beat that semi-final for length was the last one of the day, between Doug Kempsell and Nick Mulvey. The four-set clash was a remarkable 61 minutes, with only 15 refereeing decisions made in that time. After Nick Mulvey levelled the games score at 1-1 following a tie-break victory, Doug dug deep to win the third set 14/12 after both players had wasted gameballs. That appeared to break the back of the challenge for the second seed, as he then took a significant lead in the final set, which he took 11/4.

Sunday’s finals belonged to Sharpes and Tomlinson – two young class acts. Millie won the final as she had every other match – without dropping a game. Lucy Beecroft had played well to upset the seedings and beat Jessica Davis to the final courtesy of the only five-set match of the ladies’ event, but found it difficult to compete with the pace and movement of Tomlinson, who took 19 minutes to win 11/4, 11/5, 11/3.

The men’s final was just under half an hour. Despite Sharpes taking a 4/0 lead in the first game, Kempsell brought it back to trail 6/7, but the top seed then pulled away to take the game 11/6 and the second set comfortably, 11/2. The final game took much the same shape as the first, leaving Sharpes to take the winner’s cheque: 11/6, 11/2, 11/6.

The presentations took place afterwards, and tournament organiser Mark Hildred thanked the volunteers and officials.

Charles Sharpes also said a few words, “Thank you to everyone’s who has helped organise the tournament, and all the referees for coming down. It’s been a massive help having the good quality of refereeing.

“It’s the event’s 18th year which is incredible. Thanks for the continued support and hopefully there’s another 18 years to come.”

Boston Open returns - 12th December 2014

The BSPA Boston Open returns for an 18th consecutive year this weekend, with world #68 Charles Sharpes and World University Champion Millie Tomlinson leading the draws.

Boston Squash and Racketball Club is hosting the prestigious professional tournament once again, and it is open to the public. There will be another host of world and nationally ranked squash players competing for their share of a 4-figure prize pot. The Boston Open is one of eight events on the British circuit, which also includes tournaments in Wimbledon and Edinburgh.

This year’s men’s draw is headed up by world #68 Charles Sharpes. Charles played at the Boston Open in 2011, when he reached the semi-final before losing a close five-set semi against Andy Whipp. The 22-year-old won the British U23 National Championship in April. His main competitor will be Doug Kempsell, who is already Scottish #3 at the age of 21.

Spectators this weekend could well be watching one of the game’s future superstars as 22-year-old Millie Tomlinson leads the women’s draw. She is already world #77, and won her first WSA (Women’s Squash Association) title just last month in New York. The achievement was all the more remarkable given that she was unseeded. The second seed is Lily Taylor, herself in the world top 100 despite only celebrating her 18th birthday this year.

Looking ahead to the tournament, organiser Mark Hildred said: “The Boston Open puts the town and the club on the sporting map. We’re delighted to welcome once again some players of outstanding quality. We are as ever thankful to all our sponsors who make this possible, and in particular Moore Thompson Chartered Accountants who are continuing their long involvement with the competition.”

The tournament, which is held at the club down Rosebery Avenue, is open to the public and free to attend. Full draws with times are available online at, but play is generally from 2-4pm and 6-9pm on Friday, 11.30am on Saturday, and 3pm on Sunday.

For full coverage of this weekend's event, including all the results, reports and pictures, go to

Hildred's Hong Kong showing - 17th July 2014

Boston Squash and Racketball Club’s Mark Hildred achieved some notable scalps when he competed at the World Masters Squash Championships in Hong Kong last week.

The Boston number one was one of 126 players in the over 50s age category, and won three matches before being knocked out of the tournament.

After a straightforward 11/9, 11/3, 11/4 win over South African Bryan Hodgkinson on the all-glass show-court, Mark beat the former US number one Will Carlin in a tough second round match, 11/8, 5/11, 11/9, 11/5.

The third round saw what was arguably the Bostonian’s best performance, as he knocked out 9/12 seed Francis Bradford of South Africa without dropping a game, 11/8, 11/8, 11/5.

Mark’s run was eventually halted by Australian 5/8 seed Dale Robbins, who won through to the quarter final 11/9, 11/3, 11/7. He was nevertheless pleased to have made the fourth round, and commented on the interest shown by the locals in the event, which saw him playing one match in front of over 100 spectators.

New club steward - 10th July 2014

Boston Squash and Racketball Club is delighted to announce that it has appointed Pete Andrews as its new club steward. The move follows Paul Smith's decision to reduce his hours, and the club's new staffing arrangements will ensure that the club is now manned seven days a week.

Paul will continue his stewarding duties on Wednesdays-Fridays, while Pete will begin weekends, Mondays and Tuesdays.

The club would like to thank Paul for his continued dedication, and to welcome Pete to his new role, for which he has plenty planned.