Ladies brave Storm Ciara to play out some close matches in the Portsmouth & District League

Storm Ciara reduced the Portsmouth & District League weekend programme to just four ladies matches.

Sarisbury Green and Ryde Lawn 3rds players from left to right: Cheryl Goater, Penny Redwood, Mary Hart, JLo Moore, Sue Cox
Sarisbury Green and Ryde Lawn 3rds players from left to right: Cheryl Goater, Penny Redwood, Mary Hart, JLo Moore, Sue Cox

But the bad weather did not restrict the excitement, with three of the four encounters ending up with the rubbers being shared and the overall result decided on countback.

Canoe Lake and Ventnor ladies braved the conditions to battle it out in Division 2.

The opening rubbers were shared, but Lake took a one-game advantage into the reverse match ups.

Lynne Candlish and Wendy Evans teamed up to give Canoe a win in the second rubber, losing just four games.

But Daphne Curzon and Rosie Rodley fought back for Ventnor.

They took the first set 6-2 and, needing a 6-1 win in the second set to claim a tie, they raced to a 4-1 lead, only for Alison Wakelin and Claire Keiditsch to dig deep and level at 4-4.

The Ventnor pair eventually won the set 7-6 to earn a share of the points, but Lake had done enough to take the extra winning draw point by four games.

Avenue 3rds' meeting with Rowlands Castle followed a similar pattern in Division 3.

Again, the opening rubbers were shared with Rowlands edging two games ahead.

The first sets in both the reverse rubbers were also shared with the same game score.

Castle's pairing of Caron Howe and Liz Marenghi went on to wrap up their rubber against Edwina Acason and Lisa Giles, but only after winning a tie break in the second set.

Sarah Long and Sara Robson then defeated Dawn Wears and Dreen Chestnutt 6-2, 6-1.

The six games won by the Avenue pair would prove crucial, enabling them to claim the winning draw points by four

games - and with it the divisional championship.

In Division 4, Warsash 3rds went into their match with Alverstoke knowing they needed a clear win to

give themselves a chance of avoiding relegation.

Top pair Jan Grant and Noelle Brannigan won both rubbers.

They were backed up by Karen Harrison and Jill Scott, who won their first rubber and took the second one to a match tie break before being defeated.

Sarisbury Green christened their new home courts at Abshot where they entertained Ryde Lawn 3rds.

Penny Redwood and Cheryl Goater won both their rubbers for the hosts, but Ryde took the other two.

Sue Cox and JLo Moore forced Redwood and Goater to a tie break in the first set and the six games they won as a result were enough to give Ryde the winning draw on games countback.

The weather relented for the midweek matches and Chichester took full advantage to avenge their early season defeat by Avenue.

A final scoreline of 4-0 in their favour was an exact reverse of the previous meeting between the pair.

It now means just three points separate top and bottom in what is a highly competitive division.

In mixed Division 2, the competition is hardly any less competitive.

After Fishbourne’s 3-1 victory against Avenue 3rds, just three points separate the top four teams.

David Lloyd West End 2nds have more or less wrapped up midweek mixed Division 3 title, but the second

promotion place is still available.

Canoe Lake 2nds, Ryde Lawn 3rds and Carlton Green all maintained their chances of claiming that spot with 4-0, 3-1 and 3-1 wins over Fishbourne, Rowlands Castle and Southsea respectively.