After last week's clean sweep of tied encounters in the top flight of the Doric Insurance sponsored leagues, this week saw a trio of victories for the 3 top sides.
Whistlers C are yet to lose and they lead the way by a single point. This week they powered their way to an 8-2 win over the side at the foot of the table, Whistlers A. Lawrence Stacey led his team strongly courtesy of wins over Dawn Morgan, Ellis Tomlin and reserve Paula Le Ber, dropping just the single end to Morgan in the process. Matthew Casey and Ryan Gilson each defeated Tomlin and Le Ber, but neither could get the better of Morgan. Gilson also needed to be near his battling best against both Tomlin and Le Ber, as the left-hander trailed both matches 2-0 before coming through to win over 5 sets. Stacey combined with Casey in the doubles and they edged past Morgan and Tomlin in 5 sets, having trailed 2-1.
Lions A continue to chase and they ended out 7-3 winners over Whistlers C this week. Ryan Bichard, Jamie Ferbrache and reserve Jez Powell all defeated Mark Pipet and Charlotte Casey to make sure of the points. It was not plain sailing in those encounters though, with Powell needing to come back from 2-0 down to get past Pipet in 5 and Ferbrache battling back from the same score to win over the distance against Casey. A 3rd deficit of 2-0 was reversed by the defending champions in the doubles where Bichard and Ferbrache defeated Josh Stacey and Casey. Stacey was relentless in his singles matches for the defeated side, dropping just the single end during his 4 set win over Bichard in the opener.
Lions B are a further 4 points back and they secured a narrow 6-4 win over 5th placed side Lions C this time out. Phil Ogier led his team strongly due to singles wins over Paul Hainsworth, Andy Gill and Corey Brouard, the former win coming over the full 5 set distance. Dan Collenette added wins over Gill and Brouard, whilst Andre De Carteret picked up the pivotal 6th rubber courtesy of his 4 set win over Brouard. Hainsworth defeated Collenette and De Carteret in straight sets, whilst Gill overcame De Carteret in 4 sets. Hainsworth and Gill also combined well in the doubles where they battled back from a 9-5 deficit in the 5th end against Ogier and De Carteret to edge it 11-9.
Whistlers D remain top and added a further 2 commanding wins this week. First up was a 9-1 win over Whistlers E, the only loss coming from Ken Falla's excellent 5 set win over Keith Opie, after having trailed 2-0. They followed up on that with a 10-0 whitewash of Ravenscroft Panthers C. Opie, Kay Chivers and Ben Sharp all defeated Richard Edwards, Juliette Yeaman and reserve Mark Windsor in singles action and Chivers and Opie finished proceedings by defeating Edwards and Yeaman in straight sets in the doubles clash.
Lions E are 2 points behind and the team of Jez Powell, Caden Brouard and Jonah Ingrouille also won both of their fixtures this week.
Finally, Lions D are 3 points behind with a game in hand on the leaders and they too kept the pressure on, with the team of Tim Le Page, Steve Ozanne and Carl Le Tissier also adding a further 2 wins.
St Pauls B have opened up a commanding 3 point advantage at the top of the third Division after their important 7-3 win over title rivals Lions H. With strong Division 2 standard player Craig Dunning in their team, they are always going to be a force to be reckoned with and he showed his quality this week by contributing to 4 of the rubbers earned by the victors. He breezed past Peter Powell, Edward Rowe and Oscar Pearson in singles action without dropping an end and he finished his evening with an unblemished record following a straight sets doubles win alongside Derek Carter over Powell and Rowe. Carter added 2 singles wins over Pearson in 5 sets and Rowe in 4 sets, whilst Brian Le Cras added a 4 set win over Pearson. Powell defeated Carter and Le Cras, whilst Rowe earned himself a straight sets win over Le Cras.