Angela Crossley led her table topping York 1 mixed team into action on Wednesday when they hosted mid table Sherburn in Division Two. She partnered Tom Warburton but the duo were in for a rude awakening with the visitors top seeds Tristan Gretton and Rachel Hughes proving a very impressive opponent and winning 3-9. David Corbyn and Yvonne Mannall formed a strong looking pair at seed two and they defeated Stephen Duree and Sue Hudson 7-5. Emma Abel made another appearance at seed three and this time she was joined by men’s third team youngster Ollie Newsome. This young pair certainly enjoyed their time together on court as they produced some quality tennis to run out 9-3 winners over Peter Vause and Helen Haywood to ensure Wetherby led 19-17 after round one.
Crossley and Warburton dug deep to beat Haywood and Vause 8-4 at the start of round two whilst Corbyn and Mannall fought valiantly before narrowly losing 5-7 against Gretton and Hughes. Abel and Newsome were not disgraced in losing 5-7 against Duree and Hudson and Wetherby eased ahead 37-35 with the vital final round now going to be crucial.
Crossley and Warbs secured another important 8 in defeating Sherburn seed two to keep the hosts in the driving seat. Abel and Newsome did very well to bag 4 against Gretton and Hughes whilst Corbyn and Mannall ensured any nerves were dismissed with their best performance of the evening to dismantle Haywood and Vause 10-2 and keep Wetherby top of the pile with a 10-2 victory and an overall 59-49 victory.
Well done all on another hard fought success and the team remain a point clear at the summit.
On the Wednesday Ian Teasdale took his Wetherby B side to title favourites Harrogate Spa in Division Five. This was really a trip into the Lion’s Den as Spa are already top of the table with one hand on the trophy. They have been dismissing all their opponents with relative ease and even without star man Chris Dight fielded another strong six here. Once again the hosts were unstoppable. James Lofthouse stepped in at seed one and helped himself to an impressive and quite incredible 32 points as he made hey in the sun. Kath Keighley and Liam Lindley stepped in for their first appearance for the visitors with injuries and absence again forcing a number of changes to the line up. They were able to secure the bragging rights following a 6-6 draw with Jonathan Guritan and Margaret Jackson which stopped the hosts taking all the matches played however. Doug Harrison and Ann Jones gave their all again but against such classy opponents it was impossible to stop the onslaught whilst captain Ian Teasdale partnered by Judith Crossley also did their best under gruelling circumstances. A final score line of 84-24 put the Harrogate team four points clear after a sixth consecutive victory with the rest already playing for runners up spot I fear!
The A team played a day later and are currently sitting second and hoping to secure the runners up berth behind Spa. With just the one reverse away at Spa they are doing very well and entertained bottom side Harrogate Racquets at Castlegarth. Mike Triffitt was absent on holiday whilst Debbie Vines continued her recovery from injury so was missing too.
Mike Richards made a welcome return to the fold following a nasty eye injury and he paired up at seed one with the classy Fiona Chantrey. They quickly gelled and their power and guile proved too much for the visitors as the secured two wins and a draw in accumulating a useful 25 points.
Greg Vince stepped in to partner the ever reliable Louise Williams and it was a consistent evening for this duo. They ensured they kept the ball in play well and forced Racquets to commit the errors as they won all three rubbers 8-4 for an excellent 24 points on the night.
Once again the sun was shining which made the work heavy going at times. Barry Johnson teamed up with Dawn Steel to complete a strong home line up and this pair managed two wins from three but a more than useful 23 points to ensure there was never any danger of an upset in truth. Graham and Charlotte Wild are a father and daughter combination at Racquets and they have played for their B team in division three this season and proved best of the visitors players. Even in defeat they managed a very acceptable 18 points and showed why they are used to playing slightly higher up the league.
However the Wetherby good run continues and with the gap now closing to just two points on Spa, but more crucially widening to four on the chasing pack ,they are in a good position to hopefully keep up the promotion charge. They visit Ripon next Wednesday who were expected to be a major rival but have suffered three defeats already with the inability to name a consistent starting line up proving their Achilles heel. However they got to with 12 points of Spa when fielding their strongest side and on that form this will prove a difficult game for Wetherby who will need to be at their best to bring home the bacon. Well done to all concerned here and good luck next week.
From left to right – Louise Williams, Fiona Chantrey, Dawn Steel, Barry Johnson and Greg Vince.
The Harrogate first team have found life tough in Division Two but were taking solace from a tough opening fixtures where they have played the top sides. However they travelled north to Ripon on Thursday to face the leaders knowing another tough game awaited. Ripon boosted a 100% record following five wins and picked a strong line up once again.
The quality of tennis on show was impressive and the performances throughout were above average. Rachel Hill and Paul Archer continued at seed one and were happy with their showing as they remained extremely competitive in all three rubbers. They notched up a useful 17 points from a win, draw and a loss to keep the league leaders very much on their toes.
Helen Robinson and Marc Bickers are regular partners but found their Ripon counterparts too hot to handle. Neither was able to produce their usually strong all round game and with every error punished the pair were never able to build any momentum. They managed to add another 10 to the visitors tally. Nigel Williams resumed with Lucy Wright and they too were unable to produce their best. However they fought gallantly in two narrow loses and provided a useful 12 points to the Wetherby score board. Unfortunately Ripon showed why they are leaders and will be very hard to shift as they had few weaknesses and adopted a very clinical approach. A final score line of 69-39 confirmed the hosts supremacy but there was plenty of positives for the visitors who will surely find much easier opponents waiting in the following month. Well done this evening and good luck when Knaresborough are the visitors to Scott Lane next week .