Hamble edge Seacourt to boost title push

Avenue fours and Seacourt seconds, Ian Collier, Ian Marks, James Graham, Chris Anderson, James Crook, Robert Haines, Mark Dipple, Vince Venus

Avenue fours and Seacourt seconds, Ian Collier, Ian Marks, James Graham, Chris Anderson, James Crook, Robert Haines, Mark Dipple, Vince Venus

John Taylor competing in the Portsmouth event last year. Picture Ian Hargreaves (160333-4)

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JEM Tennis Hamble were pushed to the limit by Seacourt to maintain thir unbeaten record in Portsmouth & District League men’s division one on Saturday.

James Green and Rob Fearnley won both their rubbers for Seacourt.

But Mark Turl and Andy Long replied for JEM so the match was decided on games, Hamble edging it by 36-30.

Their battle with Warsash on August 8 now looks like it will be the league decider.

Lee condemned Priory to their fourth defeat in succession in the same division.

With Priory now looking certain to be relegated, it’s odds on that Southsea will replace them.

They continue to see off all opposition in division two, their victims this time being Ryde Lawn seconds, who returned to the Isle of Wight empty-handed after losing all four rubbers.

Southsea’s second string secured a double for the club with a 3-1 win over an Avenue thirds.

PTA seem to have the division three title in the bag after a 3-1 win over nearest rivals Lee seconds.

Seacourt second string won for the third match in a row as they beat Avenue four.

However, Seacourt thirds lost 4-0 in a marathon match against Warsash’s third string.

The winners’ captain, Nick St John, who was playing his first match for four months after an injury lay-off, was hoping for a gentle return but finished up playing six sets in four hours.

He did at least have the consolation of winning both his rubbers.

In the same division, Chichester seconds all but sealed the championship when they beat Wickham by 3-1.

JEM’s mixed team are creating almost as much of a stir in mixed one as the men’s team.

They were strong enough to see off a stiff challenge from Warsash, who fielded Solent Cup winners Jake Norris and Matt Pond.

Norris and partner Victoria Pine fought out six sets and 60 games in a long afternoon, winning one rubber and losing the other.

But JEM’s second pairing of Zander Woodford-Smith and Natalie Campbell were just too strong for Pond and partner PG Udal, giving them the edge three rubbers to one.

The only team left with a realistic chance of stopping the JEM charge are Ryde Mead.

They are also still unbeaten, having whitewashed neighbours Ryde Lawn 4-0 on Saturday.

Chichester’s second string beat Alverstoke seconds in ladies’ four.

Lee fours, who defeated Warsash thirds in a thrilling match, which was decided when Lee’s Jan Russell and Jackie Hyde took the first set off Janet Beale and Elaine O’Donnell in a losing rubber, remain in with a promotion chance.

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