The Wetherby ladies first team opened their campaign at Castlegarth this afternoon when they hosted Fulford. The visitors had been unbeaten in division two last season when they took the title with Wetherby promoted as runners up. This then was going to be a tough baptism of fire in the top section but captain Yvonne Mannall picked from strength and the team looked good on paper!.
Mannall teamed up with former Wetherby coach Charlotte Todd and this duo would combine power and precision to form a useful partnership. As expected all three rubbers were extremely tight affairs and the hosts would be happy with two draws and a narrow loss to secure 17 points for the team.
Sue Jacklin and Rachel Hill brought a wealth of experience to the table and after resting up in the off season were chomping at the bit to get back on court for some competitive tennis. The duo were in fantastic form and dominated two rubbers winning both 11-1. They narrowly lost 5-7 in the other but a contribution of 27 points was an excellent return .
Sue Perkins had missed last season through injury but made a welcome return to the ranks to partner Helen Robinson. The pair found it tough in losing two rubbers but crucially still contributed 8 points in those narrow losses and with an 8-4 success in the other game a final score of 16 was most welcome and ultimately ensured Wetherby recorded a tremendous win by 60 games to 48 to surprise their York based opponents.
A cracking team effort and a great start to the season so well done to all. Next week the squad travel to Poppleton for a Saturday morning clash commencing at 10am. Poppleton finished fourth with 7 wins from their 14 games last year. They started this season with a 76-32 loss at Bishopthorpe so let’s hope our girls can inflict further pain next week!
The ladies second team were also in action as they travelled to play David Lloyd of York who are based on Hull Road. Like the first team they too enjoyed promotion last term as runners up and who could forget the dramatic last day when they won and Copmanthorpe lost to ensure it was our girls cracking open the bubbly.
The hosts had suffered relegation from division one last year so this promised to be a tough opener with two divisions separating the sides last season.
Fiona Chantrey has taken over the captaincy from Rachel Butterworth and was missing key personnel from the squad due to injury and holiday commitments. Ginny Hinds was called off the bench to make her debut after a couple of seasons out through injury and teamed up with Butterworth. Hinds is a steady player with good groundstrokes and a deft drop shot and she and Butterworth combined to good effect. Against a very strong home squad the couple were delighted to record one win from their three contests and obtain a commendable 12 points.
Also making a welcome return from injury was Angie Bell who has been in good form pre season but was looking forward to some competitive league play. Teaming up with mum Trish, the Bells formed a strong partnership with Angie as ever dominating the baseline whilst Trish took care of things at the net. They were involved in three excellent close rubbers and in managing a single success they secured a useful and much appreciated 16 points.
Captain Chantrey teamed up with Marise Richfield and this quiet but no nonsense pair fought hard but with little luck. They couldn’t manage to trouble the judges but contributed a further 8 points to the cause. However David Lloyd were very impressive and likely to be amongst the favourites for promotion this term and they finally ran out comfortable winners 72-36. Plenty of positives on the morning and hopefully the team can bounce back quickly when they host another relegated side Starbeck next Saturday afternoon with a 2-30pm start. Well done to all involved and good luck with the season.