The Wetherby men’s third team made the trip over to Leeds to play Alwoodley this evening. The team have yet to record a victory this term and find themselves second bottom of the table but the hosts are propping up the rest so this was a real wooden spoon dogfight.
With captain David Morris unavailable, Barry Johnson took over the armband and partnered Jeremy Branton. The pair opened up the evening with a competitive rubber against a useful home pairing of Simon Pexton and Dave Robson and after a titanic struggle honours were even.
The Wetherby duo won the opening set 6-3 but the hosts bounced back to record a 6-2 win to level the match.
Over on Court Two Mike Triffitt and Tom Harrington teamed up. The pair have played many times socially but this was their debut together in league action. A shaky start, with no player winning serve during the opening service games, meant it looked like a tight game but with Harrington bamboozling the opposition with his switching from left to right hand play regularly and Triffitt dominating the net, the chaps ran out 6-3 winners. The beleaguered hosts couldn’t live with the Wetherby men during the second set and a 6-1 win was as convincing as the scoreline suggests.
So at the interval Wetherby led 3-1 and knew two rubbers would secure a vital road win.
Johnson and Branton soon set about Rob Garlick and Roger Shipley and after some impressive tennis resulted in an opening 6-0 win they followed up with a 6-2 success to quickly bag the winning rubbers.
The pair were back in the bar watching the Euro 2016 match between Portugal and Austria as Triffitt and Harrington were still playing their first set. After storming into a 3-0 lead, Triffitt suffered an injury which slowed the pair down but after opening a 5-2 lead they capitulated to lose 7-5.
Determined to bounce back and improve the team points difference the pair refocused and with Harrington bossing the baseline and Triffitt the net again, they levelled the rubber with a 6-2 victory.
The overall final winning margin of 6-2 meant a first success of the season and put daylight between themselves and Alwoodley.
This is still quite a tight section and with numerous weekly changes in personnel from most teams, it’s often quite difficult to call a result. Wetherby return to action on Saturday when third placed Wakefield make the trip North. This promises to be a tougher game but buoyed by victory tonight hopefully back to back wins can be achieved so the team can start climbing the table.
Well done to all concerned on a pleasant evening with superb hosts.
The men who earned Wetherby a first win of the season from left to right were – Captain Barry Johnson, Jeremy Branton, Tom Harrington and Mike Triffitt.