17th Sep. 12

Herne Bay tennis club had mixed success over the last few weeks in their remaining Kent league matches. The mixed 2 team played their last 2 matches in division 3 with depleted teams and lost them both. They had a very close game at home to Hythe 1 losing by just 1 game and then lost by 3 rubbers to 1 away to Tunbridge Wells 3. The unlucky team against Hythe was Danielle Mile/Chris Lambeth and Keith Clark/Nicola Mileham. Both pairs won against the Hythe second pair but lost to their 1sts. In the away match 2 youngsters deputised for the missing senior male players and played very well. James Ley played with Danielle Miles and they won their rubber against the Tunbridge Wells 2nd pair while Dan Walker/Nicola Mileham were unlucky to lose both rubbers. The team finished 4th in the division. Mixed 4 played their last 3 matches of the summer in division 7 in quick succession. Their season had been disrupted by the bad weather earlier in the summer. They won 2 of them to finish 5th in the division with 2 wins, a draw and 3 defeats. The 2 wins came at home to Maidstone 2 and Shooters Hill 2 and they were both by 3 rubbers to 1. In the match against Maidstone, Sarah Pout/Dave Lawrence, won both rubbers and Vanessa Webb/Dave Clements won 1 and in the match against Shooters Hill Caroline Packer replaced Pout. This time Webb & Clements picked up the 2 rubbers.
In the midweek Kent League matches the ladies1st team played their last match in division 1 away to Bearsted 1 knowing that the winners would claim the league title. After the 1st round things were not looking good for the Bay as both their pairs, Anne Gibbs/Sarah Pout and Sue Toye/Danielle Miles, had lost in championship tie-breaks. In the 2nd round Gibbs & Pout beat the Bearsted 2nd pair 6-4, 6-2 and Toye & Miles, enjoying the much faster pace, beat the number ones in another championship tie-break. The team had thus recovered from their 2-0 deficit to win the match 2-2, 6 sets to 5 and clinch the title! The ladies 2nd team finished off with 2 3-1 wins in division 3 against Bromley CC 2 away and Bearsted 2 at home. The team for both matches was Diana High/Mary Gibbon and Liz Harvey/Mary Haldin and they shared the rubbers. High and Gibbon won 2 against Bearsted and Harvey & Haldin won 2 against Bromley CC. The team won 4 of their 5 matches and missed out on winning the division by a couple of rubbers. The mixed veterans team completed their matches with 2 wins to retain the division 1 title for the 15th consecutive year. The match against Sevenoaks was the closest of the season with the Bay winning 3-1, helped by one of the Sevenoaks players having to concede at the end of the 2nd set with the match poised at 1 set all, when he felt too ill to continue. Keith Clark/Debbie Holden won both their rubbers and Anne Gibbs/Brian Cooper won one. In their last match the team beat Broadstairs 4-0 but they were made to fight very hard by the Broadstairs 1st pair. Clark playing with Kay Mileham won 6-4, 7-5 and Gibbs with Jerry Loader won in a championship tie-break.
In the East Kent league ladies 1 played 2 matches in division 1. The 1st was away to Canterbury on a very hot afternoon. In the 1st round Denise Parrett/Anne Gibbs won in straight sets against the powerful hitting but erratic Canterbury 1st pair, while Debbie Holden/Christine Hanson won 15-13 in a championship tie-break. The team needed a toilet break before the start of the 2nd round but were surprised to find some of the Kent men’s 45 squad in the ladies changing room. Still recovering from this shock Gibbs & Parrett won their 2nd rubber in straight sets and Holden & Hanson stopped at one set all because Hanson was exhausted by the heat. In the 2nd match the team travelled to Hythe to play their 1st team on the grass. In the 1st round Sarah Pout/Christine Hanson, won very easily against the Hythe team’s weak 2nd pair while Gibbs & Parrett struggled to get used to the uneven bounce of the grass courts. They lost the 1st 9 games before they finally won a game and from that point on the match changed with the Herne Bay winning the 2nd set 6-4 and then the championship tie-break. In the 2nd round they were much more formidable winning without dropping a game. Pout & Hanson had a good game against the Hythe 1st pair but lost in straight sets, The team have won three matches and lost 2 with one left to play. The ladies 2nd team also had an excellent win away to Hythe in the same division. Both pairs beat the Hythe second pair and lost to their 1st but the team won enough games to clinch the match by 3 games. The successful team was Vanessa Webb/Judy Wright and Mary Haldin/Anja Stileman. The team finished with 2 wins and 4 defeats. The men’s 1st team played Faversham at home in division 2 and won 3-1. Greg Pearson/Bryan Packham won both their rubbers and Dave Lawrence/James Ley won one.