Mixed Tennis Makes A Welcome Return

After their exertions in the men’s match this morning, Tony Cutler and Bradley Triffitt were back on court this afternoon as they turned out in the mixed battle and even Mike Triffitt made an appearance in the final round. Tony’s team, Cutlers Blades, took on David Rhodes outfit, Rhodes Runners, and pleasant weather greeted the players.

David teamed up at seed one with new member Lara Fawcett, who has been showing up well, but they faced a tough test against Bradley Triffitt and Bev Lyn. This was the first outing together for Brad and Bev but they were soon into stride with some excellent teamwork. Bev was happy to stay around the net whilst Bradley managed the baseline and playing backhand he enjoyed plenty of cross court winners once more. David is a tricky and crafty veteran and made some lovely returns whilst Lara didn’t need a second invitation to hit a winner which she often did with ferocious power. However it was Brad and Bev who remained the more consistent and they ran out cosy 9-3 winners.

Tom Harrington and Fiona Chantrey were at seed two for the Runners and they faced Tony and Debbie Vines for the Blades. Little between the quartet early doors but Fiona was showing some classy touches and with Tom a willing runner, the pair began to get on top. Tony was trying to force the pace and Debbie is very consistent but it was Chantrey and Harrington who exploited the gaps to record a 8-4 success.

On court three Lindsay Edgar teamed up with Anne Lillywhite and they took on another newcomer in Arun Manoharan and the vastly experienced Ann Jones. Arun has been a regular at social and was looking forward to the step up to match tennis but this was a tough introduction against such a strong pairing at this level. Arun is very quick around court and happy to extend the rallies but Anne has a lethal backhand and Lindsay has been improving all summer so it was no surprise they began to take control. Ann Jones was her usual competitive self and wasn’t giving any cheap points away and she and Arun were having good fun. Ultimately they came up short 3-9 but were smiling throughout.

Tom and Fiona popped down to the show court to start round two and their match with Brad and Bev promised to be very close and competitive. A tight opening saw the pairs tied at 3-3 with some real quality on show but Triffitt began to unleash his forehand and spray some nice winners about. With Bev solid and defending stoutly, they moved ahead and although Fiona and Tom battled bravely to the end they were unable to prevent a 8-4 loss.

David and Lara were looking forward to taking on Lindsay and Anne Lillywhite and this again promised to be a thriller. It didn’t disappoint and this was an end to end affair with some eye catching tennis on show. However it was Anne and Lindsay who were able to stay the more consistent duo and in a close contest they just held the advantage. There was good understanding between Lara and David but they couldn’t quite reach the finish line first as they lost 5-7.

Arun and Ann were still enjoying themselves but Tony and Debbie were far too clever in this encounter and used the width of the court to fashion some nice winners. Tony continued his great men’s form from this morning and with Debbie a rock, this partnership was strong and they ran out cosy 2-10 winners.

With the Blades building a useful lead, Lara was called away so Mike Triffitt stepped in off the subs bench to partner David against Tony and Debbie as the third round got underway. With the sun now beating down, conditions were tricky but Rhodes and Triffitt adopted a simple game plan and were happy to defend and pick off any loose balls. With the smell of her Sunday dinner in the air, Debbie looked keen to waste little time and hit some nice quick winners whilst the spin of Tony is always very tricky. However it was the men’s duo who took the rubber winning 8-4.

Tom and Fiona were once again in eye catching form in the finale as they proved too streetwise for Anne Lillywhite and Lindsay Edgar.  With Harrington chasing every lost cause and Fiona producing some lovely deft touches, the pair played extremely well and didn’t let their opponents have any time to compose themselves. Lindsay was serving well and Lillywhite hit many of her customary baseline winners, but it wasn’t enough to prevent a 8-4 reverse.

Brad and Bev rounded off a good afternoons work as they took on Arun and Ann. The underdogs faced a big ask but never threw in the towel and made the favourites work hard for the points. However Bev was gaining in confidence as each round went by and with Brad looking happy and comfortable they ultimately had far too much weaponry to run out 1-11 winners to bag 28 points overall.

A final score of 42-66 saw Tony celebrating at the end but this was another great example of in house tennis at its best with so many happy smiling faces and players enjoying themselves in the sun. Thanks to all who contributed and we look forward to another match next weekend thanks.   


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