Boroughbridge Extend Winter League Lead

Winter League leaders Boroughbridge were looking to extend their lead at the summit to four points this evening when they faced Collingham. This was the last fixture before the Christmas break and once again the table toppers arrived with a very strong quartet. Bridge captain Charlie Grasby rested himself with Simon Robinson making his first Winter League start of the campaign. He paired up with Nicola Scott whilst regulars Chantal Lancaster and Jamie Jarman were once again on show. With four members of the promotion winning Bridge team that will be looking forward to gracing Harrogate Division One next season it was going to take a high effort from Collingham . They had regulars Tony Cutler, Sally Johnson and Liz Douthwaite on duty whilst Wetherby second team men’s player Sam Moore, who resides in Collingham, kindly stepped in to make up the team this evening.

 The forecast had looked grim but an upturn in conditions meant that despite temperatures falling the weather was dry and ensured the contest could proceed. Sam Moore and Sally Johnson teamed up at seed one for Collingham and faced Bridge top dogs Nicola Scott and Simon Robinson. Robinson had looked confident in the warm up and was soon translating that as the rubber began as his big hitting from deep and excellent short game meant he would be extremely difficult to beat. With Scott the ever consistent and providing excellent support the Boro duo were playing some eye catching tennis and showing why they had been so successful during the summer. Sally Johnson is a real battler on court however and as usual was giving her all to the cause. Moore was enjoying his hard hitting mini battle with Robinson and ensuring the visitors could never rest on their laurels. However true to form it was Boroughbridge who carried too much weaponry and ran out cosy 3-9 winners.

Chantel Lancaster had proudly topped the Boroughbridge summer league player standings and alongside the excellent left hander Jamie Jarman looked another strong partnership. Collingham captain Tony Cutler was joined by Liz Douthwaite and once again they provided dogged opponents. The ability to bamboozle their higher rated  adversaries with some unorthodox play was certainly a useful tool but once the Bridge duo hit stride they began to show their class. Jarman was enjoying the freedom to express himself and with some lovely groundstroke play was able to build some lovely rallies which Lancaster was often able to deliver the finally killer blow. A good encounter with the visitors running out 3-9 winners which left them 6-18 ahead going into round two.

 Moore and Cutler knew they would have their work cut out to keep Robinson and Jarman at bay but were certainly not going to surrender without a fight. Moore was matching the big hitting opponents and with Cutler proving difficult to read the Collingham men were giving everything. However a three division summer league gap was ultimately going to prove too hard to bridge and the visitors ran out 2-10 winners.

Sally Johnson and Liz Douthwaite have long been playing partners and would use their experience to good effect in the ladies rubber. This proved to be the highlight of the evening for Collingham and left Chantal Lancaster and Nicola Scott mightily relieved after an epic encounter. The Collingham girls were on fire as they defended with gusto and attacked with determination which left the visitors having to find extra reserves to combat. Eventually the extra consistency of the Boro ladies was to prove the difference as they managed to secure a 5-7 victory.

 With the final round starting and the visitors ahead 13-35 it was just realistically pride left for the hosts. However with the cold beginning to increase Boroughbridge looked determined to close out victory and mindful of points difference were eager to turn the screw.

Johnson and Moore were able to build on their earlier debut with another promising performance against Lancaster and Jarman. They began to gain a good understanding and were rewarded with another three games as they went down 3-9. However this was an encouraging effort and against lower ranked opposition they would be a match for anyone. Fair play once more however to the Boro duo who made it often look effortless as they patiently picked off the Collingham pair with some impressive tennis.

Tony Cutler and Liz Douthwaite were also up against it as they faced Simon Robinson and Nicola Scott. Robinson was certainly enjoying his first Winter League game of the season and like a fine wine was maturing as the evening advanced. With Scott continuing to play at a high level the pair were irrestitable and with the Collingham duo running on empty the visitors showed no mercy to run out winners 1-11.

 Thanks to all players this evening for braving the cold conditions and some entertaining tennis was reward for a considerable effort. Boroughbridge now extend their advantage to four points after this 17-55 success and are looking the team to catch although champions Rufforth are the only team to lower their colours and still unbeaten, remain favourites to retain their crown.

Matches resume on January 16th when Starbeck play Boston Spa in a real eye catcher with Spa looking to close the gap on the leaders although Starbeck with games in hand, will feel they are still in the hunt. Only Rufforth remain unbeaten so we can expect some more competitive action in the New Year.

Happy Christmas to everyone and see you in 2018.

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Tonights winning Boroughbridge quartet were – Simon Robinson, Jamie Jarman, Chantal Lancaster and Nicola Scott.

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Gallant runners up Sam Moore, Sally Johnson, Tony Cutler and Liz Douthwaite.

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Wetherby Youngsters A Real Credit To Club

Wetherby sent three pairs to the U16 Team Challenge at John Charles in Leeds today. There were two groups with participants playing four matches of twenty minute durations and sudden death deuce.

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Angus Harte and Max Svenson teamed up and competed in Group A. They managed to secure three wins and with only a solitary loss were able to top the section and take the title. A great achievement and well done chaps.

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Dan Wright and Ed Grogan have been key men for both the Wetherby U14 and U16 during the last few years and were expected to go well. Unfortunately due to illness Dan had to withdraw although Ed managed some tennis teaming up with those sitting out .

Henry Brown and Bradley Triffitt were members of the successful Wetherby U14 team that had finished runners up to Chapel Allerton during the Summer league season. They opened with a loss here but bounced back with a draw and two victories to finish runners up in Group B.

Well done to all our players and it was great to see the club having a strong turnout at junior level. Wetherby have long supported junior tennis and look forward with anticipation to further events. A big thanks to Tennis manager Rob Ratcliffe who is pictured above between Henry and Bradley for organising the event and ensuring smooth progress today.

 

Winter League Champions Show Their Class

Defending Winter League champions Rufforth were the visitors to Castlegarth this evening as they played Wetherby 2. The visitors had only managed one match this season so were thankful the anticipated rain didn’t emerge and on a dry but cold night play was able to continue without interruption.

Rufforth sent the big guns again with all four member of tonight’s team part of the successful mixed squad that had enjoyed promotion from York Division Two and who will compete in the top section next Summer.

Wetherby fielded Marc Bickers who had enjoyed success with the men’s third team in helping them to promotion whilst Mike and Jill Abel were regulars for the Mixed York second team who had done well in Division Four last season. Captain Janine Smith from the ladies second team completed the home quartet.

It was Smith and Bickers who resumed their promising partnership from last week who paired up once more as they faced Kate Lewis and Tom Shouksmith. Tom had been runner up in the highest rated couples in the mixed and with Kate at number five they would certainly form a formidable duo. However Smith and Bickers were quickly away and determined to put on a show of their own. Bickers was confidently hitting well from deep and with some excellent short play and superb court awareness had the visitors on the back foot. Smith was enjoying the hard hitting which she relishes and produced some fantastic tennis herself as the home pair began threatening a hugh upset. With great consistency they indeed made all to inflict a surprise 8-4 defeat on their bewildered opponents and give Wetherby a fantastic start.

Sue Yoward and James Edmond faced Mike and Jill Abel. The Rufforth duo had topped the York League Division Two Top 25 Couples section after an incredible campaign where they tasted defeat just once in 33 rubbers!. Mindful of the shock defeat of their other pair the couple looked determined throughout and the powerful aggressive tennis they both produced proved almost unplayable. The Abels were left shell shocked and despite a spited effort with countless deuce games and many extremely long rallies, they were on the wrong end of a 0-12 defeat.

So Round Two kicked off with the Champions ahead 8-16. Mike was determined to improve in the men’s rubber where he lined up with Marc. They knew they would be underdogs but both had played well for the Wetherby men’s teams last summer and were used to playing high. However Tom Shouksmith was also keen to avenge that surprise mixed loss and with playing partner James Edmond demonstrating a high array of quality shots and showing why he is one of the leading players on the circuit in the area, the Rufforth juggernaut began to roll. However this proved an excellent contest with no quarter given and the tennis continued at a very impressive pace and standard. Eventually the visitors had a little too much class but the home men were not disgraced in a 4-8 loss.

Janine and Jill knew they would also be heavy underdogs against the Rufforth ladies in their rubber and would soon find out the quality they both possess. Yoward is a very imposing figure and dominates with a great court presence. With Lewis covering every inch the Rufforth duo looked impossible to beat as they reeled off some thunderous shots and clinical net play. Smith and Abel battled away and once more had many moments they could be pleased with but the sheer efficiency of the Rufforth pair proved far too good as they ran out 0-12 winners.

With the tie put to bed the last round was a chance to relax and keep entertaining and none of the players failed in this. It proved to be two keenly contested affairs.

Jill and Mike produced their best tennis of the evening and were rightly rewarded for a big effort with a narrow 4-8 defeat against Kate and Tom.

Marc Bickers and Janine Smith couldn’t quite match their unbelievable efforts from the first round but showed what a good partnership they have unearthed as they ensured opponents Sue Yoward and James Edmond had to pull out all the stops to run out narrow 4-8 winners.

So Rufforth continued the defence of their Winter League crown with back to back opening wins and move into second in the table, two points behind leaders Boroughbridge who they have already beat. They still have two games in hand too so continue to be the team very much to beat. They have no further games before the Christmas break before an eagerly awaited clash with dark horses Boston Spa in late January.

Wetherby 2 are still searching for their opening win but can now put their feet up until February before returning to action.

Well done to all on show for producing some more memorable tennis and good luck in the remainder of your games.

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https://wetherbytennis.org.uk/winter-league/

2017 AGM Report

20171122_193118The 2017 AGM was held at the tennis club Wednesday evening with a number of speakers hosted once more by chairman Steve Jones. Jones kicked off proceedings with his chairman’s report in which he explained that the club remains in a strong position despite ongoing riverbank erosion works which the club have funded with the help of various grants. He outlined the plans and expectations for the forthcoming year and thanked the committee and those who have also helped play a role in making the club an ongoing success. Adding in his treasurer report speech he noted the club remains financial sound although mindful of caution and the need to prepare if flooding hits the premises once more. An excellent speech which captivated the audience and was clear and concise and left no stone unturned. Jeremy Reddish was making his first appearance on the top table and ensured the agenda was followed and introduced various members to the floor.

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Secretary Jill Abel spoke about the positive season the teams had with four promotions and no relegations showing the quality and strength in depth the club now has. She has clearly enjoyed her first season in the role and has done an excellent job organising .

Angela Crossley spoke about the coaching team and junior set up with both going well and despite a number of new arrivals her team remains solid. The summer camps were popular and the junior coaching strong and with over 70 adults taking out individual lessons the coaching is an important and integral part of the tennis club. Many of the juniors that have come through under Angela’s team are now developing and as well as coaching themselves are playing significant roles in team tennis and maintaining and improving the squad depth.

 Mike Richards and Mark Vines have been developing plans to introduce a computerised membership system whereby all members can renew and pay online via clubspark which is already used for court bookings. This will have a positive outcome when unveiled and allow the club to interact with members far easier than at present. Mike discussed the system and how he hopes we can implement it before the next renewal time in May next year.

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Mike Triffitt spoke about the Winter League and how it goes from strength to strength with more teams competing and extra games played which ultimately bring additional revenue to the club whilst Peter Johnson discussed the forthcoming erosion works and how it will affect members without disrupting play on courts.

Bob Kirby presented Doug Crawford with a gift to thank him for his tireless work behind the scenes dealing with membership and hopefully he will reap the rewards of automation.

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Trish Bell and Bob Kirby stepped down from their roles whilst Ginny Hinds, Declan Grogan and Roger Fawcus are new recruits who will be welcome assets to the committee.

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The evening concluded with wine, cheese and biscuits.

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Boroughbridge Extend Winter Lead Advantage

Winter League leaders Boroughbridge were looking to extend their advantage at the summit Tuesday evening as they drove South to face Wetherby 2. Once again they travelled with a strong quartet with captain Charlie Grasby teaming up with Chantal Lancaster and Jamie Jarman paired with Nicola Scott. All four players were part of the strong Boroughbridge squad that gained promotion from Harrogate Mixed Division Two last summer with Grasby and Lancaster the leading male and female players in the team.

Wetherby were able to field a competitive looking four themselves with first team men Nigel Williams and Marc Bickers boosting the ranks along with ladies second team duo Louise Williams and captain Janine Smith.

Smith and Bickers were teaming up for their debut together and took on Scott and Jarman in the opening mixed doubles. Bickers had made many appearance for Wetherby in the same Harrogate Division Two last season whilst Smith had been competing in Division Five. However this turned into a fascinating affair that was extremely close. Bickers is strong from deep and his excellent court coverage allowed Smith to patrol the net where she was seen to good effect. Jarman was proving a strong opponent however whilst Scott is a crafty player and very consistent. Finally the boro duo ran out narrow 5-7 winners after a good contest.

Nigel Williams was also seen on many occasions for Wetherby in Division Two whilst Louise tasted promotion with Wetherby A from Division Five. The husband and wife duo took on Lancaster and Grasby which was always going to be a massive ask. However they produced some attractive tennis to certainly keep their higher ranked opponents on guard. Grasby is improving each season and has been one of the leading Winter League players this term. He was enjoying his duel with Nigel whilst Chantal proved an able accomplice with some excellent tennis of her own. The couple showed why they will be gracing Division One next season with excellent teamwork and great play. Louise was hitting well from deep too and her punishing shots kept the Boroughbridge pair pinned back on many occasions. Eventually the visitors ran out winners 4-8 after another keen fought match.

With Round Two starting Bridge led 9-15 and looking to build on a six point lead. Nigel Williams and Marc Bickers looked confident of laying down a marker in the men’s against Charlie Grasby and Jamie Jarman and they attacked with aggressive play from the outset. Both men are powerful hitters and not afraid to advance to the net where they executed many winning smashes. They had Grasby and Jarman on the back foot with the visiting men struggling to gain a foothold. The Wetherby men looked assured as they secured a welcome 8-4 success to reduce the arrears.

However the Boro ladies Scott and Lancaster would prove a very strong partnership in their rubber with Louise Williams and Janine Smith. The gulf in class was going to be tough but the Wetherby ladies hit hard and with some aggressive play were trying to stay in the tie. However Bridge would prove a very accomplished pairing and with some clever consistent play were able to keep the scoreboard ticking over. They ran out cosy 2-10 winners despite the best efforts from the home ladies.

The final round started and thankfully after rain during the day the match was going to complete. The table toppers had extended their lead to 19-29 so the finishing line was now in site.

The Williams were determined to go out on a high and began promisingly against Scott and Jarman. Nigel was using all his experience to ensure he produced many punishing winners and with Louise enjoying the freedom of the park and executing confidently they were certainly enjoying themselves. Scott and Jarman responded with some attractive tennis of their own but were always just a little off the pace and couldn’t prevent a home 7-5 win.

Fortunately for the leaders Lancaster and Grasby had saved their best tennis for the finale and were now really moving through the gears. They really turned on the style which left Bickers and Smith struggling to contain the duo. Despite their best efforts they were unable to prevent a 3-9 loss but should be proud as they will unlikely face a stronger pair this winter.

Boroughbridge therefore moved onto six points and two points clear of the chasing pack following this 29-43 victory. A real big thankyou to all players for ensuring the match was played after weather looked to have derailed any chances earlier in the day and it was a credit to all that the game was played in a great spirit with good tennis on show.

It doesn’t get any easier for Wetherby as they host champions Rufforth next Tuesday whilst Bridge play Collingham in the final game before the Christmas break where they will be strong favourites to ensure they are still the Xmas leaders.

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https://wetherbytennis.org.uk/winter-league/

Quiz Night A Memorable Occassion

The annual and very successful ACTC Social evening and quiz night hosted by Angela Crossley and Jo Coverdale took place Saturday evening with once again a full crowd in attendance. There were six participating teams each with six members although one team did consist of eight and the result was a close run affair which went down to the wire.

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Table One featured ‘We’ve all slept with the quiz master’ from left to right – Rachel Hill, Paul Hill, Jo Coverdale, Angela Crossley, Guy Wood and Nathan Brook.

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On Table Two it was Debbies Diamonds from left to right we had – Nigel Williams, Debbie Vines, Mark Vines, Louise Williams, Lucy Wright and Charlie Wright.

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On Table three we had Geriatrics from left to right – Carl Binns, Gill Rowe, Nicola Chapman, Carole Womersley, Andrew Palfrey and Hilary Burton.

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Table Four was Here for the food left to right  – Greg Vince, Helen Vince, Walter Skubiak, Jo Skubiak, Peter Johnston, Carolyn Johnston, Tasneem Watson and Simon Watson.

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Left to right on Table Five were Smart Aces featuring Roger Grigg, Deila Wells, Ian Wells, Ann Jones, Gary Jones and Mike Triffitt.

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And finally on Table Six we had from left to right Wetherby Wanderers – Norma Harrington, Tom Harrington, Bev Lynn, Fred Lynn, Ann Lillywhite and Carol Christie.

Tim Coverdale once again did a superb job behind the mic with a very enthralling list of questions and intriguing puzzle pictures which left the audience captivated.

Jo Coverdale and Louise Williams produced the superb food which was appreciated by all and the delicious cakes were the highlight for many.

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Lucy Wright and Peter Johnson were left battling it out in the stand up / sit down True or False round before Lucy came through to take the box of chocolates.

 

 

 

 

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Finally as tension mounted and the room was hushed the results were revealed. In sixth place were Wetherby Wanderers picking up the wooden spoon closely followed by Smart Aces. We’ve all slept with the quiz master took fourth and Here for the food bagged third. Debbie’s Diamonds went agonisingly close but finished runners up as they were left trailing winners Geriatrics by a mere three points!!!

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Well done Geriatrics and enjoy your prizes.

A big thanks to all who contributed to a memorable evening and thanks to all who supported the event with proceeds benefiting Wetherby Tennis Club who are extremely grateful.

Knaresborough Defeat Collingham In Winter League

A cold but thankfully dry evening ensured another Winter League match would take place this evening with Collingham and Knaresborough doing battle at Castlegarth. Boro had lost their only previous game against Wetherby 1 whilst Collingham had defeated Wetherby 2 but lost to Boston Spa. Collingham arrived with captain Tony Cutler once more leading his troops into battle. He was joined by fellow Wetherby member Barry Johnson and regular Collingham ladies Sally Johnson and Liz Douthwaite.

For Knaresborough Tony Graham, who has played in Harrogate Mixed Division Two last summer, would captain and he was joined by father and daughter Dan and Ellie Wilson along with Sheree Ashman who were leading players for the B team who just missed out on promotion from Division Six.

With the team news and line-ups revealed this had the look of a close encounter with Boro slight favourites thanks to Graham been present.

The opening round saw Cutler and Douthwaite take on Graham and Ashman and it was quickly evident that Graham was going to have a very influential role on the nights proceedings. Serving well, hitting hard from deep and dominating the net he was quickly out of the blocks to ensure Boro would keep the points ticking over. Ashman proved a good partner with consistent tennis and some crafty play and they had their opponents on the run. Cutler was chasing plenty of lost causes down however and with Douthwaite also showing a never surrender attitude they certainly didn’t go down without a fight. But the class of Graham was impressive and he and Ashman proved a strong duo running out cosy 3-9 winners.

Barry and Sally Johnson, no relation, were making their Winter League debut together and faced Dan And Ellie Wilson. This pair had enjoyed a good summer where they topped the player stats for the club in Division Six and looked very comfortable together. Dan is a strong no nonsense player and was quick to take any chance that came his way. Barry Johnson who had led Wetherby A to promotion from Division Five was his equal however and was enjoying the dual between these two big hitters. Sally was adopting a safe but secure approach and keeping to a simple game plan took the sting out of many rallies with some clever play. This rubber proved close and with little to separate the quartet it eventually was the better teamwork of the Wilsons that saw them home to a narrow 5-7 win.

Round Two began with work to do for Collingham therefore with Boro ahead 8-16. Liz and Sally are regulars together on the ladies circuit and they would use this to ensure they had the upper hand in their ladies clash with Ellie and Sheree. However it was certainly a very entertaining and close contest throughout as the pairs battled for supremacy. Eventually it would be Collingham who ran out narrow 7-5 winners to close the overall gap to just six points.

Barry Johnson and Tony Cutler can often be seen together on court and needed no introduction as they prepared to face the big challenge of lowering the colours of Tony Graham and Dan Wilson. Graham was moving up the gears nicely and proving very difficult to contain. The hard hitting Knaresborough pair looked confident and despite Johnson unleashing many backhand winners and Cutler carefully surprising his opponents with unorthodox play, it was Boro who began to dictate matters. Another impressive performance from the Boro pair saw them restore parity running out 3-9 winners which increased their overall lead to 12 points.

As the final round began it was going to take a massive effort to produce a turnaround but Collingham still were looking sharp and confident they could make things interesting. Cutler and Douthwaite were finding time and space to enjoy themselves against the Wilsons and as confidence increased they produced their best tennis of the evening. Dan and Ellie responded well and this rubber was always destined to go down to the wire. Finally it was Collingham who clinched a 7-5 success in another thrilling match.

However with the deficit still at 10 hopes were rapidly fading of a great escape but Barry and Sally Johnson were now finding their form and starting to gell well together. Barry was enjoying the hard hitting of Graham and matched his aggression shot for shot. Sheree and Sally were determined to get the better of each other and this rubber was developing nicely. With some tremendous winning shots on show it was perhaps fitting that honours were eventually shared following a 6-6 tie. This meant Knaresborough ran out winners 31-41 which on the balance of play was indeed a fair reflection of events.

Well done again to everyone in another well contested Winter League affair and good luck with your remaining games.

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Well done to Knaresborough on tonights success. From left to right captain Tony Graham, Ellie Wilson, Dan Wilson and Sheree Ashman.

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A good effort from Collingham who lined up from left to right with Sally Johnson, Barry Johnson, captain Tony Cutler and Liz Douthwaite.

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https://wetherbytennis.org.uk/winter-league/