Commonwealth Games: Squash: England's double joy
Monday 21 September 1998
As the crowd stood in obedient silence, the shoulders of one of the Australian silver medallists began to heave with suppressed mirth. The British pair, it seemed, would have something extra to remember their triumph by. "It was bloody disgusting to have that happen at what is supposed to be one of the proudest moments of your life," Wright said. "We had put in so much hard work to get there. But there you go, it was one of those things."
Not enough to spoil the warm feeling of beating Australians, though. It was Jackman and Wright's second competition in what is a new category within the sport.
Last December, at the inaugural world doubles tournament in Hong Kong, they took the silver medal. Here they went one better, defeating Robyn Cooper and Rachel Grinham, 15-10, 15-12 with a demonstration of dogged patience. "It's all about who makes fewer mistakes," Wright said. "We were prepared to stay out there all night to grind out a win."
The English pair's determination had been solidified by their performance in the semi-final, where they had saved a match ball against the Australian pairing of Carol Owens and Sarah Fitz-Gerald.
"We said to each other that we had not won that match to come and lose today," Wright added. "It's always special to beat the Australians - there's a friendly rivalry between us."
The rivalry was not so friendly in the concluding final of a sport making its Commonwealth Games debut, where England's Paul Johnson and Mark Chaloner overcame the often irascible challenge of Byron Davis and Rodney Eyles, last year's World Open champion.
Eyles did more than his fair share of jostling and several times delayed play during the 15-8, 15-4 defeat to query the umpire over lets. "Rodney was trying all his old tricks," Chaloner, a 26-year-old from Hertford, said. "He kept on coming up to us and making little comments. I didn't say anything to him. When they started doing that, we knew we'd got them."
Johnson added: "They were trying to find the chink in our armour, but we knew what to expect. We had a game plan, and it was all in our own hands."
There was fortuitous assistance, however, as the Australians appeared ready to wipe out the English pair's early lead in the first game. In walked the Duke of Edinburgh.
Latest in Sport
Arsenal have no plans to stock Petr Cech inspired caps in club shops - yet
Petr Cech blasts Chelsea supporters who sent him death threats after £11m Arsenal transfer: 'They are not true fans'
Nathaniel Clyne joins Liverpool: Transfer news live - Arda Turan decision, Petr Cech reaction, Sergio Ramos to Manchester United
Christian Benteke to Liverpool: Aston Villa striker ready to reject Tottenham
Arda Turan announcement expected on Friday: Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester United possible destinations
- 1 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 2 Greece crisis: Alexis Tsipras accepts troika bailout proposals with conditions
- 3 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 4 French woman dies in freak bungee jumping accident
- 5 Facebook rainbow profile pictures likely being tracked by social network
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato
They are neither a 'state' nor 'Islamic': Why we shouldn't call them Isis, Isil or IS
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a 3-4 month pro rata fi...
£16000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Telesales Executive is requir...
£25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity to join ...