The Wetherby men’s first team were in action again this morning looking to complete a hat trick of wins to start the season. A sunny day greeted the players although a cool wind helped keep temperatures pleasant. Visitors to the lion’s den today were Knaresborough who were propping up the early table.
The hosts made three changes from the side that had won last week with David Corbyn, Josh Bayliss and Paul Godden absent and replaced with David Woon, Roger Fawcus and Rob Payne.
Captain Fawcus teamed up at seed one with the youngster Woon who has been in scintillating form for the York 1 mixed team recently and played an influential role in two consecutive victories for Angela Crossleys outfit. He was keen to continue that form in the men’s and this duo had the look of a dream pairing. Both men play a very aggressive style and are very big hitters with excellent serves. They would need to be at their best however against the useful visiting two of Alex Krag and Andy Cousins. This pair can handle power and pace and the contest proved a real beauty with some excellent tennis on display. Luckily for Wetherby Fawcus and Woon ultimately carried too many big guns and finally wore down their spirited opponents for an 8-4 success.
Jeremy Reddish and Tom Warburton were looking to continue their good start to the campaign together at seed two. Another couple of big hitters but with soft hands to provide some silky short game shots they met Matt and Andrew Walton. This was to prove a ding dong affair and Wetherby were pleased to record a narrow 7-5 success.
Rob Payne was looking forward to his seasonal debut alongside Nigel Williams who was starting to acclimatise after a two week break in warmer climes. The duo would struggle for consistency early on but were soon in their stride against the useful Dave Hewson and Trevor Cook. Payne was producing some excellent net play to complement Williams baseline efforts but they just feel short losing narrowly 5-7.
Round One concluded with Wetherby leading 20-16 but Fawcus and Woon were just starting to go through the gears and were eager to put Hewson and Cook to the sword. The Wetherby hot shots were now finding a good length and line and giving their bewildered opponents few opportunities. The visitors did well to bag 3 but a convincing 9-3 score left the hosts in a good position.
Reddish and Warburton took on the impressive Boro seed ones but would enjoy the high quality action. This really was a superb encounter with the quartet on show all demonstrating a high level of competitive tennis. A good effort from the home chaps but they finally were just touched off 5-7 in a battle royale.
Payne and Williams certainly benefited from their opening rubber and felt more at ease in the second. The improved teamwork and communication reaped dividends as they secured a vital 7-5 victory which left the team ahead 41-31 and a nice 10 point advantage to protect.
The match was soon put to bed as Fawcus and Wood showed no mercy in demolishing the Walton’ s 12-0. They demonstrated a real killer instinct and were in no mood to surrender. A terrific and clinical display in all honesty.
Reddish and Warburton were certainly enjoying themselves too as they started to play some exhibition stuff to run out convincing 9-3 winners against Hewson and Cook. Payne and Williams were expecting a tough finale and they got it with Krag and Cousins proving a little too canny and street wise for the Wetherby pair. They added another 3 however to the hosts total which had now reached a winning score of 65-43 and a final match result of 9-3 meant Wetherby secured a third straight win.
Wetherby appear to be hell bent on successive promotions and with a strong squad and quality off the bench will certainly have a very good chance. They visit Rowntree Park next Sunday and will fancy themselves to maintain this impressive start. Well done chaps and good luck with future contests.
The Ladies first team were also playing on this lovely Sunday and would enjoy the opportunity to top up their tans and soak up the sunshine. They travelled to York 2 but were missing Angela Crossley, Sue Jacklin and Charlotte Todd from their ranks. Rachel Butterworth kindly stepped up from the second team after helping them to success yesterday. The team have made a decent start following promotion with two wins and a loss last week to title favourites York 1.
The Standard is high in this top section so it was remarkable that captain Yvonne Mannall and regular partner Rachel Hill should acquire a fantastic and most welcome 28 points. Helen Robinson and Sue Perkins teamed up at seed two and added another 17 points from three extremely close and hard fought encounters whilst third pair Lucy Wright and Rachel Butterworth battled away manfully to record a further 9 . The match was extremely close and competitive throughout with the contest taking on a roller coaster effect. For those quick on the maths you will realise the sides therefore could not be separated and Wetherby record a useful point from a 54-54 draw. The team are looking to consolidate this term and avoid relegation so will be delighted with their start from their opening four games. Next week they face another of the title challenging teams when they visit Dunnington 1 so it will need another big effort to come away with anything from that particular trip.
Well done to all on show today and good luck with the rest of the campaign.