11th Feb. 14

Herne Bay tennis club had a successful couple of weeks with wins in 4 out of 7 matches played in the Kent League. The mixed 1st team played Bexley 1 at home in division 2 and won by a set. The match was played in warm sunshine with no hint of rain, a rare event this winter. In the 1st round the new pairing of Peter Elsden and Caroline Packer made an excellent start taking the 1st set 6-2 against the Bexley 1st pair. The opposition fought back adjusting to the heavy balls and damp conditions and took the second set 6-3 and the match tie-break. The Bay’s second pair, Martin Beckley/Louise Tucker, played 2 close sets against the Bexley second string winning 6-3, 7-5. They then went on to play the Bexley 1st pair and with Beckley tiring due to illness they lost 4 and 4. Elsden and Packer recovered from the disappointment of the 1st round to win their second rubber 6-3, 6-3 and clinch the match for the team by 5 sets to 4. The team are currently 2nd in the division with one match to play. The ladies 1st team travelled to Bearsted to play their 1st team in division 2 on a gusty but sunny afternoon. They managed to win the match 3-1 despite the challenging conditions being made even more difficult when a hail storm swept the courts while the sun still shined brightly. In the 1st round the Bay’s 1st pair, Louise Tucker/Anne Gibbs played a long match against the Bearsted 1st pair finally winning 6-7, 7-5 and 10-7 in the tie-break. Their 2nd pair, Nicola Mileham/Debbie Holden won much more quickly and easily 6-2, 6-3. In the 2nd round Tucker & Gibbs also won 6-2, 6-3 and Mileham & Holden narrowly lost to the Bearsted number ones 6-4, 2-6 and 10-12 in the deciding tie-break. The team are currently unbeaten and top of their division with one match left to play. The ladies 2nd team travelled to Blackheath to play their 2nd team in division 3 on a showery and windy morning and narrowly lost on games. Both Herne Bay pairs, Sue Toye/Kay Mileham and Debbie Holden/Caroline Packer, beat the Blackheath second pair and lost to their first. The mixed 4th team also experienced horrendous conditions while playing their home match in division 7 against Bexley 3. The team of Sarah Pout/Lionel Hoskins and Vanessa Webb/Dave Clements were driven from the courts by the heavy rain twice during the match and finally had to stop playing at the end of the first round when the courts were too flooded to continue. The team recorded their 1st win of the season by just 1 game. Pout & Hoskins beat the Bexley 2nd pair 3-6, 6-2 and won the deciding tie-break and Webb & Clements lost 3-6, 6-3, 0-1. The teams were level 1 all on rubbers, 3 all on sets but won by 19 games to 18. The ladies veterans 1st team played Bearsted 2 in division 2 on a very windy afternoon at Herne Bay and won 3-1. Bay’s 1st pair, Nicola & Kay Mileham were very impressive in the challenging conditions dropping just 3 games when winning their 2 rubbers. The second pair was Sue Toye, returning to competitive tennis after 5 months out with a foot injury, and Debbie Holden and they won one rubber and just lost their other. Both rubbers were decided by 10 point tie-breaks. The team have won their 1st three matches and are still in contention for promotion to the top division. Finally in the DITC indoor league at Deal the mixed team played Sandwich and won 4 – 0. Graham Miles/Caroline Packer beat both Sandwich pairs 6-4, 7-5 & 6-0, 6-3 and Dave Lawrence/Sarah Pout won 6-1, 6-3 & 3-6, 6-2 and 10-4 in the match tie break.