31st Oct. 18

Making the most of splendid weather of late, the winter league matches are coming thick and fast for Herne Bay LTC.

The Men’s 3 team entertained Frindsbury Men’s 3 in Division 9A and got off to an excellent start by running out 4-0 winners. In the opening rubbers, Bay’s 1st pair Colin Thompson/Mark Townsend claimed victory in straight sets 6-2, 6-1 although the score did not reflect the closeness of the match with some lengthy rallies. Steve Howard/Jason Hollingsworth on the other hand had a rapid encounter with the visitor’s 2nd pair with most of the points being won or lost quickly and Bay again winning in straight sets. The reverse rubbers saw Thompson/Townsend trade games early on before romping home 6-3, 6-0. Howard/Hollingsworth had a much tighter match in two very close sets eventually closing out 6-4, 7-5.

The Men’s over 60’s Midweek travelled to Broadstairs for their opening match in Division 2. A strong wind and bright sunshine from one end made for difficult conditions but the players managed some fine tennis nonetheless. Bay’s 1st pair Ian Cooke/Mark Townsend taking the first rubber in straight sets with their consistent groundstrokes 3-6, 4-6 while the 2nd pair Bob Toye/Tony Blackall, the latter making his debut, forged a solid partnership and despite losing in 3 sets in their opening rubber, took an all important set that would prove pivotal. The 2nd round saw Cooke/Townsend lose just the 2 games whilst Toye/Blackall battled hard but came up short in 2 close sets. With the match tied at 2 rubbers each, Bay took the spoils 5-4 in sets.

Townsend and Cooke featured again in the Men’s Vets team that played host to Oakwood Men’s Vets 1 in Division 2A. Cooke this time partnered Graham Miles while Townsend teamed up with Gary Smith. Cooke/Miles proved to be too strong for both sets of opponents dropping just the 7 games in 2 straight sets victories. Townsend/Smith however were taken all the way in their 2 matches. Against Oakwood’s 2nd pair they fought back from a set down before narrowly losing out in a 3rd set championship tie break. Their final rubber was even closer, again going to a 3rd set after Oakwood’s 1st pair had drawn level in a 2nd set tie break. Bay went on to take the 3rd set and the rubbers for a hard fought 3-1 win.

There were good starts in the Ladies section too. The Ladies 3 team met Freedom Leisure Ladies 3 in Division 8A and produced a solid 3-1 win. In the first round of rubbers Sarah Pout/Tui Thain started well winning the first set only for their opponents to fight back to take the next 2 sets. Bay’s other pair Sheila Wyver/Lesley Taylor had an easier time of it playing consistent tennis to outplay Freedom’s 2nd pair to win 6-3, 6-2. In the reverse rubbers Herne Bay went from strength to strength with both pairs winning in straight sets to take the match 3-1.

Pout and Thain teamed up again for the Ladies Vets 2 side to take on Brenchley & Matfield at home in Division 2B. In the first round Bay’s first pair Denise Parrett/Debbie Holden fought back from a set down to win a topsy turvy match in a 3rd set championship tie-break whilst Pout/Thain again showed their class beating the visitor’s second pair 6-3, 7-5. Those close first round matches seemed to take their toll on visitor’s who only manged 6 more games for Bay to run out deserved winners 4-0.

The Ladies 1 team travelled to near neighbours Canterbury 1 in Division 1B whose very young team posted the narrowest of wins. Bay’s pairs Nicola Mileham/Danielle Miles and Louise Tucker/Sue Toye struggled against the hosts first pair but both then comfortably beat the second pair. With the match tied 2-2 in rubbers and 4-4 in sets, Canterbury just won by 29 games to 27.