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WP Squash

Contact PersonGlenda Erasmus

Tel:  021 674 6717
Fax: 021 674 6717
Email: administrator@wpsquash.co.za

WP Masters:
President: Andre Naude
Cel: 076-370-5436
Email: andrefnaude@yahoo.com
 

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SQUASHAHOLIC

Hi! My name’s Alan but people call me Stapes. I am a Squashaholic. It’s my Dad. He’s to blame. He used to bribe me with Chips and Coke to come and watch him play in his white shirt and baggy rugby pants and Bata tackies, and funny wooden racquet. I was tiny and we were still in Rhodesia, and who was I to say “No”. I didn’t watch much, chowed my chips, sucked on my Coke and played with my bag of balls, my comfy blanket. I quite liked those squiggly little trickle boasts he used to play.  And maybe I can blame him for my chipaholism as well. And maybe he fed me beers at the courts. Can’t remember. But it sort of makes sense.

Some love that thwack of leather on willow, or the swoosh-tink of a glorious golf drive. Others, the doef of leather boot on ball or the oomph of human against human, grunting into a scrum or a tackle. Some think the thunk-woer of a topspin tennis backhand, or the whoosh of a wave breaking around your ears, is music. Many ponder over the poof of a snooker cue and the pink of pool balls clinking together.  Bowlers rumour over the clunk of bowls as they ruminate over their next shot and for hockey players, the tick-smack of stick against ball, is heaven. But me, I love the whack that little rubber ball makes, as it smacks into the strings, and smashes into the wall. And sometimes, I get to hear that whack, and “Aaaggh”, as that little missile sears into a soft upper thigh, smoking. And I giggle.

Some go ga-ga over the freshly cut green grass of hallowed cricket arenas, many are in awe over the immaculate beauty of our soccer stadiums. Gyms, for some idiots, are inspiring, and for others a pool - cool, smooth and serene, is the symbol of architectural beauty. The wide open veld, peaceful, tranquil with wild animals and guns, is a place of sanctity for lovers of the wild. But for me, my St Pauls, my Stonehenge, is that virgin white, rectangular box, accessorised with romantic red touches and smears of black rubber. The cold cavernous courts, with notice-boards, pinned with old AGM notices, snippets of coaching info and lists of non-paying members. There, I find my Zen. My Alpha and Omega.

Not for me, Supporter 23, or yellow Bafana top. Not for me, the white flannels of Lords or the colour-coded attire of a 17 handicapper. Uggh, those bright, body-hugging, self-adoring, psychophantic, psychedelic, size-showing skins the cyclists wear. And speedos? Naah, not with this body. Me, I need a shirt, a baggy one. Never new. It must smell of sweat. It must have licked at defeat, chewed at competing and rolled in victory. It must have spent a night, locked up, wet, sweaty, and forgotten in my black squash bag. Shorts – baggy and best un-ironed. Socks - yes and squash shoes, buggered, bent and blistered. Aaaah! Comfort.

Not for me, the hurly-burly of Humewood Links in a howling South Easter, not for me a crowded, smoky pool bar. Not for me, tossing serves into gusty gale force winds, or a four hour fine leg/mid off shift and an embarrassing duck walk in the blazing summer sun. Not for me, standing around,  practising line outs on a cold, rainy winter’s evening, or  that 4.30 a.m. alarm buzz for the slow burn up Brickmakers in a lashing 5am storm. Not for me a bond extension on the latest, lightest bike or those four-digit membership fees of the golfing fraternity.

For my little fix, irrespective of weather, unrestricted by time, day or night - even a  lunch-time quickie is still rewarding - all I need is a racquet, a ball, squash shoes, and R20 bucks - which will probably get me a beer as well. I feed my addiction in the comfort of my court. Having a partner is best. Anyone will do. And if no-one is willing, alone, I can still spend time, running routines, sweating and growing my game. The drug is devilish. It’s all consuming. All it takes is 45 minutes, sometimes less, sometimes more. It sucks me in, swirls me around, and like the yellow submarine, whisks me away from the worries of work and the world, the whims of my wife and the chunking of my children. And I am spat out, depleted, tired, sweaty and soppy but happy, exhilarated, relaxed. Feeling Good.

I have dabbled in the addictive dens of various sports and sought sanctity there. Cradled in the fables of cricket, its traditions taught me much and brought me many friends. Injured and gristled  in the glory and honour of school 1st XV rugby, and a once-lover of languid soul-searching long-distance running, till the jarring , lock-jawed my knees. As a child, I dreamed of being worshipped at Wimbledon and I have experienced the fantasy-world of Fancourt, the splendour of Sun City and the poise of Pinnacle Point, but am always mystified by the mysteries of golf.

But only squash has offered me the all-inclusive package of speed, power, guile, chess-like thinking, the competitive verve, the convenience, the economy, the “tores” and tournament camaraderie, the individual drive within the team spirit dynamics, the comfort of hot shower on squash-sore body, the cold post-match beer, win or lose, rolling down a thirsty throat, and that stiff bum, as you rise, next morning……  My beloved, addictive friend - SQUASH.

For a slower, languid fix, I have also dealt in coaching. How glorious to watch as a beginner buzzes with the excitement of actually hitting consecutive shots? How rewarding to see the hard-working, ambitious players climb that ladder? How stimulating to see a side, gelling, and growing, and for an addict like me, to see others joining and enjoying my addiction.

So, as the Winter leagues wither, we head into the quiet time of the season, and before the splash of Summer League begins, a desperate call to all my other squash junkies. Heed my desperate SMS’s, voicemail messages and e-mails.  And know you are serving society, and keeping crime off the streets by feeding this junkie with just a jab of your time.

 Anyone for a game today? Booked a court at 5.15pm. Kit’s in the car!!!

 
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