The weather was really the winner in the end although the two Wetherby outfits manfully battled the elements to ensure the first round was completed to at least enable a result to be obtained. With the forecast changing late afternoon to a dry but cloudy evening hopes were high as the match commenced but as the rain began to fall it quickly became heavier and there was no alternative to finish after the opening round was completed.
Wetherby 1 captain Mike Triffitt paired up with the evergreen Ann Jones and they took on Wetherby 2 couple Greg Vince and Trish Bell. This had the look of a close contest on paper with four very different styles on show!. It proved very much the case with the rubber remaining close throughout and neither couple managing to open up anything but a one game lead. Ann Jones may very well have set a new Winter League record for the number of deuce games during her opening service game which remarkably reached 15!. Jones was in great form however as she faced a barrage of returns from the Vince and Bell but managed to defend manfully with Triffitt able to gain some winning smashes at the net thanks to her battling efforts!. Greg Vince is proving himself an accomplished player this season and on top of an all action game, where he covers every inch of the court, is returning shots with interest and proving difficult to pass. Trish Bell was very menacing at the net and was proving difficult to handle and with Triffitt returning well and trying to keep the error count low this developed into a real cat and mouse affair. A 6-6 draw was eventually a more than fair outcome of the proceedings with no one deserving to be on the losing team in a real good battle of wits.
On the showcase court Jeremy Reddish and Helen Robinson were teaming up for Wetherby 1 with husband and wife combination Mike and Jill Abel providing the opposition. This also looked a close match up on paper with some quality players on show. Reddish was showing why he is a regular in the men’s first and mixed teams and plays aggressively with some hard forehand returns and excellent net coverage. Robinson, who is one of the leading females at the club, has a superb forehand and devastating backhand and produced some wonderful winning shots. However the Abels are a match for any couple and with Mike his dynamic self also covering every inch of the surface and Jull extremely confident and well organised this rubber went down to the wire. Reddish and Robinson had threatened to run away with proceedings at 4-1 up but the Abels battled back and a final scoreline of 7-5 in Wetherby 1 favour left them breathing a big sigh of relief at the end.
Unfortunately with rain halting proceedings and despite a consertated attempt to replay, this will not be possible. Time restraints and unavailability means both teams are happy to accept the overall score line after the minimum one required round. This left the first team narrow 13-11 winners. Neither teams is challenging at the summit and so the result will not greatly impact the table but for now Wetherby 1 improve to second place on 8 points having finished their campaign. Boroughbridge are two points behind, but with three games in hand are favourites to reclaim the runners up spot unless they beat leaders Rufforth in a potential title decider!
Thanks to all the competitors this evening and hope you all have dried out now!!
From left to right Wetherby I – Captain Mike Triffitt, Ann Jones, Helen Robinson and Jeremy Reddish.
Wetherby 2 from left to right – Mike Abel,Captain Jill Abel, Trish Bell and Greg Vince.