Wetherby 1 Crowned Champions

Wetherby 1 were crowned the 2022 Kendall’s Winter League champions this evening after a cosy success against Rufforth 2 at Castlegarth. Captain Lucy Wright along with Richard Franks were late withdrawals with Covid so a big thanks to Charlotte Todd and Andy Roberts for stepping in and proving very useful deputies.

Todd was playing her first competitive match since welcoming her daughter into the world recently and paired up with Adrian Lobley whilst Roberts was joined by Louise Beasley.

The visitors had the ever-reliable captain Philippa Page on show alongside Dan Russell whilst Maggie Zhang was joined by newcomer Danny Adams for his first Winter league runout.

A warm, dry evening ensured conditions were near perfect as the action got underway. Charlotte and Adrian began against Philippa and Dan and the Rufforth duo knew early doors they faced an uphill challenge as the Wetherby top dogs were soon into stride playing some eye-catching tennis. Adrian has been an excellent recruit since joining and his crafty, elegant style allows him to create plenty of openings and dictate play. Charlotte was relishing her return to action and showed some nice deft touches at the net as the pair continued to turn on the power. Philippa and Dan can always be counted on to give everything and chasing many lost causes and refusing to throw in the towel they provided good opposition but the classy home pair were in no mood to let up and ran out worthy 11-1 victors.

Andy and Louise entertained Maggie and Danny and this proved a tight tussle between the strong quartet. Maggie has made some impressive performances during the winter league season and will surely enjoy success this summer whilst Danny looks promising with a great attitude and a keen runner, happy to cover every inch of the court.

Louise is always strong at the net and with Andy a terrific baseliner the duo began to exert pressure forcing their opponents onto the back foot. A good rubber but Wetherby finally prevailed 8-4 and the champagne was on ice as they led 19-5 after the opening round.

The ladies’ rubber looked intriguing and tough to call and so it proved as there was little between the pairs. Maggie and Philippa are a strong pairing and with great teamwork and good court coverage they looked confident. Louise and Charlotte were combing well too but the visitors looked sharper and despite some nice angles from Louise and powerful ground strokes from Charlotte, Rufforth ran out narrow 5-7 winners.

Adrian and Andy are a formidable partnership for Wetherby and Dan and Danny were right to think they faced a very tough task in the men’s contest. A lovely contrast of styles for the hosts with the aggression and hard hitting of Roberts providing the heavy weaponry whilst the craft, guile and general consistency of Adrian had the visitors reeling. Credit the Rufforth men for giving plenty but this was proving a joy to watch from the big guns as they took the tie 12-0 in a very impressive showing.

36-12 meant victory was all but ensured but the last round proved extremely tight and Rufforth would prove they have a strong mental attitude in refusing to buckle. Charlotte and Adrian may have taken the foot off the accelerator but in fairness Maggie and Danny did not allow the favourites to settle and got their tactics spot on as they attacked from deep and pinned the hosts back forcing errors. No one could argue with a 6-6 result and this was probably a moral victory for the plucky away team.

Louise and Andy were having to dig deep to keep Philippa and Dan Russell at arm’s length and once again this was a very entertaining and tough battle. Andy was serving well and his extra power ultimately proved the difference although Louise was confident at the net and happy to patrol that area with authority. A great effort again from Rufforth this time just came up short as Wetherby recorded a 7-5 rubber success and clinched overall victory 49-23.

Therefore, with a seventh straight win Wetherby can now not be caught at the summit and can celebrate their title win. They finish the campaign next Tuesday at home to Harlow looking to complete a perfect season but assured that the silver where will be in their trophy cabinet!

Always great to welcome Phillipa and her Rufforth 2 squad and thanks for your support in the winter league this season.

 Winter League | Wetherby Tennis Club

Congratulations to Charlotte Todd, Adrian Lobley, Andy Roberts and Louise Beasley for a great win tonight which helped clinch the title for Wetherby 1.
Thanks to the gallant effort from Rufforth 2 captain Philippa Page, Maggie Zhang, Danny Adams and Dan Russell who proved spirited opposition tonight.

Role of Honour

Louis Glaves

Lucy Wright

Yvonne Mannall

Harry Full

Charlotte Todd

Adrian Lobley

Louise Beasley

Andy Roberts

Sue Jacklin

Jo Coverdale

Mike Park

Jill Abel

Mick Abel

Helen Robinson

Bradley Triffitt

Jeremy Reddish

Rachel Hill

Marc Bickers

Adam Turner

Thanks to all of the above for representing the team this season

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