There was a clear Portsmouth seafront v Ryde theme to last weekend’s local tennis.
Canoe Lake men’s first and second teams hosted rivals from Ryde Lawn and Ryde Mead respectively, and both produced thrilling encounters.
Lawn started in style, narrowly taking both the opening rubbers.
But Tim Clark and John Saunders hit back with a rubber victory over Rick Spink and Matt Olive, before Justin Biggs and Pete Reynolds sealed victory for Lawn by beating Tim Lawrence and Adam Ankorn 6-4, 6-1.
Meanwhile, on the adjacent courts, Lake II and Ryde Mead shared the opening rubbers, with the former taking a slender one-game lead.
But Ian White and Rob Fairall won a close tie-break to take a straight-sets win against Josh Pietack and Ben Urquhart.
And they were backed up by another straight-sets rubber win for Ryan Anders and Carl Maxim to give Lake a 3-1 win.
Lake’s third men’s team were also in action – and again against a Ryde team – Lawn III.
This time it was the Southsea-based team who crossed the Solent, but they came back with all three points after a comfortable 4-0 victory.
Most of the matches in men’s division one have been closely fought this summer, and last weekend’s contest was no exception.
Denmead’s top pair of Aaron Blackman and James Sillence recorded two straight-sets victories.
But Avenue took both the rubbers involving Denmead’s second string pair, James Craven and Scott Salway.
However, Craven and Salway won a set in each rubber and that was enough to preserve their unbeaten record and keep them at the top of the table.
After last week’s record-breaking match, Avenue men’s II had a much easier time this week, easing past Warsash II 4-0.
Chichester produced a fine performance to beat JEM Tennis II in division three, while Ryde Mead II and Avenue IV shared the rubbers in division four.
Mead claimed the winning draw points by 38 games to 33.
JEM’s ladies’ team were also in action.
Their second pair of Jane Sherwood and Sophie Christia edged a close third set against Wickham’s Maggie Allan and Yvonne Richardson, giving them a 3-1 win overall in ladies’ division two.
Meanwhile, in division three, Southsea kick-started their season with a 3-1 win over Ryde Lawn III.
Mixed division two is another which looks like being very closely fought.
Avenue 2 halted the progress of league-leaders Ryde Lawn II by recording a 3-1 win, while in division three Canoe Lake made full use of their father-and-daughter combination of John and Grace Saunders to win two rubbers against Rowlands Castle.
Their margin of victory was enough to secure the winning draw points.
Ryde Lawn III also shared the rubbers with Seacourt and took the winning draw points on games countback.
Fishbourne won the bottom-of-the-table clash with Avenue four.
And with Wickham surprising league-leaders Ryde Lawn IV 4-0, Alverstoke edging past Avenue V on games countback and Warsash III beating Active Academy, also on games countback, just four points separate the top-five teams in division four.
Mid-week action saw Warsash gain revenge for their recent narrow loss to Canoe Lake with an emphatic 4- 0 victory in ladies’ division one.
Meanwhile, Rowlands Castle repeated their winning draw over Avenue II, with first pair – Jane Whitaker and Jane Mellor – losing just five games in the four sets played.
Other results saw Ryde Lawn maintain their challenge in mixed division one with a 3-1 victory over Warsash, while Fishbourne got off the mark in mixed division two with a 4-0 win over Lee.
Lee’s men also went down in division one, losing 4-0 to Avenue.