Warsash resources stretched – but they still claim a double success in Portsmouth Tennis League action

Most social club tennis is played as mixed doubles and so it is not surprising that the mixed leagues are the most popular and enjoyable, as well as producing some high-class action.

Friday, 18th June 2021, 9:19 am
Updated Friday, 18th June 2021, 9:22 am
Warsash 1sts v Canoe Lake 1sts. From left - Lee Harvie-Wood, Mike Harold, Ross MacPherson, Jacky Gregory, Malcolm van Rooyen, Paul Whittingham, Karen Downie, Vicki White

Warsash were asked to stretch their resources when they had to field two mixed teams on the same day, writes ALAN BEST.

The 1sts faced a strong Canoe Lake outfit while the 2nds took on an almost equally strong Avenue 2nds side. And it was good to see that in the 1sts match both clubs fielded teenagers as the female partner in their top pair.

Isla Hignett and Martin Wilkinson won both their rubbers for Warsash while Grace Saunders, partnering Alfie Reynolds, battled to a match tie break win against Warsash’s second pair, Andy Herrod-Taylor and P G Udal. But with this latter pair overcoming Ryan Anders and Danielle Waters in straight sets, Warsash claimed a 3-1 success.

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Rowlands Castle v Carlton Green (from left) Robin Young, Dawn Wears, Russell Lewis, Caron Howe, Gwen Isaacs, Matt Bennett, Tina Leighton-Smith, Chris Weatherill

Warsash’s 2nds won by the same margin, but had to fight much harder - three of the four rubbers decided by tie breaks.

Warsash won both the opening rubbers, but Vicky White and Paul Whittenham won the 2s v 2s encounter against Karen Downie and Malcolm Van Rooyen.

And when Ross MacPherson and Lee Harvie-Wood levelled their match with Jackie Gregory and Mike Harrold at a set all, it looked like Avenue might escape with a point.

The home team’s experience on the tarmac surface, though, saw them claim the match tie break 10-7 and with it all three points for the match win.

The final match in the mixed leagues was even closer still. Rowlands Castle and Carlton Green shared the rubbers 2-2, with Carlton’s top pair, Russell Lewis and Gwen Isaacs, winning both their rubbers in straight sets.

But with Matt Bennett and Caron Howe edging a three-set marathon with Tina Leighton-Smith and Chris Weatherill, and then Robin Young - making his debut for Castle - and Dawn Wears claiming a straight sets win against Leighton-Smith and Weatherill, the rubbers were tied at 2-2.

The match was decided in favour of Carlton 5-4 on sets.

In the Ladies leagues, Chichester claimed a 4-0 victory over Warsash 3rds, while Rowlands Castle scored a 3-1 victory over Avenue 3rds.

Rowlands fielded teenager Emma Pearce and she and partner Lynne Foster set the base for the Castle win by taking both their rubbers - a straight sets one against Yin Cheng and Julia Baker and a hard fought three-setter against Avenue’s top pair Sarah Long and Becky Howarth.

Long and Howarth beat Lynda Pine and Liz Marenghi in straight sets, but Pine and Marenghi took the final rubber to seal the three points.

Canoe Lake ladies won both the opening rubbers against Lee in fine style, but Lee stormed back in the reverse rubbers. Donna Davy and Patsy Scarborough took the 1s v 1s rubber in straight sets while Barbara Parodi and Barbara Wilkie triumphed 6-1 6-1.

When combined with the sets won in the first round of rubbers, Lee took the winning draw points 6-4 on sets.

There was another 2-2 draw in the men’s midweek masters match between Canoe Lake and Warsash, with Lake taking the winning draw points by winning 36-33 on games.

David Lloyd West End (WE) continued their domination of the mixed midweek masters with a 3-1 win over Wellow.

WE claimed both the mixed rubbers, together with the ladies’ match, but Wellow took a hard-fought men’s match when Sheridan Easton and Mike Bevan won a tie break against Kevin Peat and Barry Moorman.