The final of the plate competition in the 2018 Summer Handicap was played between Richard Patrick and David Sledge, both having been previous winners. These two last played a handicap match in the final of the 2016 Winter Plate which Richard won 100 - 99. That time around, David squandered 7 of his initial 10 point advantage in consecutive points at the start and so Richard didn’t bother giving him any this time around.
Starting at 75 all, David got this final of to a belting start by serving into the tin then followed up with an equally nervy return of service into the same place before the pair settled down to play a fairly decent game of squash provided you aren’t particularly interested in short stuff. Having found his rhythm, David fell into his usual routine of chasing everything down and trying to keep the ball alive whilst Richard tried to direct proceedings from the T and pick off any loose balls. After several attempted kills from Richard hit the tin, David took the lead and from that point was never behind until the latter stages of the match.
David was still 5 or 6 points ahead going into the 90s but then Richard found a purple patch and pulled back to overhaul him before he made 95. Another push from David saw him regain the lead and serve for the trophy at 99 - 98 but a lapse of judgement saw him gift the point when he ought to have called for a let. So, Richard regained the serve on the magical 99 all score and served up a corker which David only just managed to dig out offering a simple opportunity to kill the ball. There are no simple chances on double match point, however and the ball hit the tin once more gifting David the trophy in a direct reversal of that previous final.