The Wetherby ladies first team were in action this afternoon when they hosted Bishopthorpe at Scott Lane. After a loss away at Pocklington last week the girls were determined to put that defeat behind them. Two wins and a draw from their opening six games is satisfactory especially following promotion and consolidation and avoiding the drop are realistic targets this term. The forecast was mixed but luckily the expected showers didn’t materialise and in fact the afternoon was dry and even quite muggy.
Sue Jacklin and Rachel Hill, fresh from helping the Harrogate One mixed team to a draw with Knaresborough on Thursday teamed up at seed one today. They took on the impressive visiting pair of Ellie Page and Laura Rhodes who are one of the stronger pairs at this level. The Bishopthorpe ladies were indeed very classy and controlled the rubber throughout to run out cosy 3-9 winners. Captain Yvonne Mannall was joined at seed two by Charlotte Todd. Todd has had an interrupted campaign but looked eager for action and this looked a useful combination with a nice mixture of styles on show. They were in no mood to allow Jane Parkin and Sarah Hawby any sniff of victory and soon started dominating play. Some delightful tennis ensured they ran out comfortable 9-3 winners. Helen Robinson was the third lady from Thursday’s mixed game when she produced a man of the match performance in her final rubber to help secure the draw. She teamed up with Sue Perkins and this popular couple were soon into stride. Perkins was enjoying the baseline and Robinson the net and they had too much quality for a spirited Krysia Clack and Elizabeth Opie in securing a useful 8-4 winning margin.
This left Wetherby four ahead entering round two at 20-16. Jacklin and Hill were frustrated by their first round showing and it was the visitors third seeds who were to feel the full force of their anger. The experienced Wetherby duo ran riot and controlled the contest with a wide variety of wonderful tennis. Hardly putting a foot wrong they demolished their bewildered opponents 12-0 to put Wetherby firmly in the driving seat. Todd and Mannall were also not intending to take the foot off the pedal and knew it would take a big effort to thwart the Bishopthorpe top pair. This rubber was hard fought and extremely competitive with the quartet producing some real quality. Wetherby were determined and just managed to get their noses in front 7-5 for an excellent success. Robinson and Perkins found the going much tougher against Parkin and Hawby and were never able to control matters as they had in their opening clash. However they were certainly not downhearted and a 4-8 loss meant more crucial points to add to an ever increasing total.
As the final round began Wetherby led 43-29 and it was very much in their own hands now. Thorpe knew hopes rested with Page and Rhodes and indeed this excellent pairing again produced some eye catching tennis as they defeated a spirited Robinson and Perkins 3-9. But that was never going to be a wide enough margin with Todd and Mannall comfortably holding Clack and Opie 8-4 and Jacklin and Hill scoring by the same margin over Parkin and Hawby.
Wetherby secured a useful 62-46 victory and the two match points moved them five points clear of Bishopthorpe . This was a very impressive performance all round and means Wetherby are nicely placed mid table with other sides struggling below them. One of those sides are Fulford who Wetherby visit next Sunday and victory there will see them move well clear of the bottom two.
Well done today and we look forward to bringing you more positive news from next week’s trip north.