Whistlers B are the early leaders in the top flight of the Doric Insurance Brokers sponsored senior leagues after they came through as 6-4 winners in their top of the table clash against defending champions Lions A.
A decisive factor in the narrow victory was the ability for the Whistlers side to convert all 4 of the matches that went to the full 5 set distance on the night. Lawrence Stacey spearheaded the charge strongly from the front with wins over Ben Foss, Ryan Bichard and Jamie Ferbrache. His win over Foss was one of the 5 setters and he withstood a fightback, having earlier led 2-0, to come through 11-6 in the decider. Matthew Casey provided good support courtesy of 2 very important 5 set wins of his own. The first came against Bichard in a match which he had led 2-0, before the Lions player forced the decider. Bichard had looked set to complete the turnaround when leading the decider 10-7, but Casey saved all 3 match points and finished it 12-10. His other 5 set win came in the very last match of the night against Ferbrache and was equally crucial. The first 4 ends were shared, but it was Casey who held his nerve to edge it 11-9. Ryan Gilson was the player to pick up the pivotal 6th win when he too overcame Ferbrache 11-9 in the deciding leg of their encounter.
Lions B emerged winners for the second consecutive week and now sit level with Lions A on 4 points. This week they squeezed past Whistlers C 6-4 in an encounter which saw Joshua Stacey unbeaten for the defeated side. Stacey defeated Phil Ogier, Dan Collenette and Andre De Carteret in singles action on top of his 5 set doubles win alongside Charlotte Casey over Collenette and De Carteret. Ogier, Collenette and De Carteret got the job done by virtue of them all beating Casey and reserve Paula Le Ber in singles action.
Lions C picked up their first points of the season courtesy of a narrow 6-4 win over Whistlers A and has seen them move off the bottom and into 4th position. Paul Hainsworth steered his team well on the evening and earned singles wins over Dawn Morgan in 5 sets and Ellis Tomlin and reserve Ian Fitchet in straight sets. He also combined well with Corey Brouard to defeat Morgan and Tomlin over 5 sets in the doubles encounter. Brouard added a straight sets win over Fitchet and this was mirrored by 2nd Division reserve Steve Ozanne to ensure the points went the way of the Lions side. There was also an entertaining clash between youngsters Brouard and Tomlin with the former clinching the 4th end 20-18 before losing the decider to his elder opponent.
Whistlers D are 1 point clear at the top of the 2nd Division but faced a tough test this week in the form of Ravenscroft Panthers A. The Whistlers side eventually emerged 6-4 winners. Kay Chivers won all of her singles matches, but she needed to come back from 2-1 down to get past Billy Ogier and 4 tight sets to overcome Albert Unden. Her other victory came against Brandon Ferbrache in straight sets. Keith Opie and Ben Sharp each earned wins over Ferbrache, but it was the doubles rubber which earned the Whistlers side the full 2 points on the night. Chivers and Opie combined well in this match to defeat Unden and Ferbrache over 4 sets.
Lions H are top of the table after they defeated Ravenscroft Panthers D 6-4. Peter Powell and Oscar Pearson each overcame Mark Windsor and Dave Kershaw in singles action and also won the doubles against Rob Vile and Windsor in straight sets, The 6th win came from Edward Rowe who beat Kershaw in 4 sets. Vile was unbeaten in singles action for the Panthers outfit and the Panthers side also earned a victory by walkover for Windsor over Rowe.
Lions J. Each of the opening fixtures were won via 10-0 whitewashes by the defending champions, but the absence of strong player Craig Dunning proved key in their demise this week. Lynn Finn, Graham Mallett and Derek Cave all defeated John Wills and Brian Le Cras in singles action to make sure of the win. Cave held his nerve well in the final fixture of the night during his 5 set win over Le Cras, 11-9 the score. Derek Carter was unbeaten all night for St Pauls and included with this was a 4 set doubles win alongside Le Cras over Cave and Mallett.