The best weather of the summer for tonight’s Division Four clash in the HDTL as Wetherby A travelled north to face Ripon B. Philip Longstaff and Debbie Vines came into the team to make their seasonal debuts and for Philip this was also a first appearance for Wetherby in the mixed after playing mens last week.
Richard and Fiona continued at seed one and faced a tricky opener as they met Tim Swiers and the league chairwomen Carol Tetlow with the pair notching an impressive 27 points at Thirsk last week. Tim is a strong server and hits hard from deep whilst Carol is extremely tenacious and like a wall is able to return almost anything!. However the Wetherby top pair made a strong start and were able to make all as they ran out 4-8 winners.
On court two Brad and Louise continued their flourishing partnership and once again they caught the eye. They took on David Latto and Colette Wilson and with great consistency were always looking good. Brad was happy to keep rallies going from deep whilst Louise was on the prowl ready to gobble any net chances that appeared. When they did she was clinical whilst Brad put many short ones in to switch things up and despite some big hitting from David and backs to the wall defending from Colette the visitors ran out 2-10 winners.
On court three there was little between the teams with Mark Bainbridge and Jo Salisbury facing Phil and Debbie. Some tremendously hard fought rallies and fittingly a 6-6 draw meant both teams came off smiling leaving Wetherby ahead 12-24.
Round two saw David and Colette move over to court one where they found Richard and Fiona in fine form and showing little mercy. This duo proved too canny for their hosts who again had their moments but were unable to convert the big points to suffer another 2-10 reverse.
Brad and Louise maintained similar tactics to the first match as they took on Mark and Jo. Mark was serving well and not afraid to put in a short one was playing well. Jo gave plenty too but the Wetherby pair dominated the net and had too much firepower to record a successive 2-10 success.
Phil and Debbie was also involved in another titanic battle but this time found the power of Tim and Carol too hot to handle. The score was harsh but Tim waited patiently to hit the right shot and often was celebrating with great accuracy as Ripon took this 9-3 which left the scores overall at 25-47.
Wetherby had one foot in the winners enclosure and Richard and Fiona wasted little time edging them nearer to the finish line. Mark and Jo once more were competitive and it needed clever play from the visitors to ensure a 3-9 success with Fiona producing some classy returns and Richard finding space out wide.
Brad and Louise knew they would need to be firing on all cylinders at they faced Tim and Carol and this clash was arguably the rubber of the night. Some endless rallies with the quartet refusing to be beaten meant this was great viewing and had everything. Wetherby led 1-3 and 4-6 but credit to the hosts who refused to lie down and as Wetherby couldn’t quite get over the line the 6-6 score line was a fair reflection of the clash which left all looking extremely drained.
Phil and Debbie produced their best tennis of the night in the last as they started to form a good understanding. Debbie covered every inch of the beautiful carpet surface as she made some amazing returns whilst Phil looked strong at the net. This really was a good clash with David and Colette also finding their form but it was a 4-8 victory for Wetherby to wrap up another impressive victory, this time 38-70.
A big thanks to Ripon for hosting and especially to captain Tim Swiers who kindly got the drinks in afterwards as the teams enjoyed refreshments outside together.
Three successive wins has taken Wetherby to the summit and they host Dacre next week, who could also have maximum points depending on their midweek match at home to fancied Harlow.