The final league matches prior to the 2019 Island Championships were contested this week. Following conclusion of the Championships, a final 3 fixtures will be completed, starting the week commencing 1st April.
Whistlers B are firmly in control of the First Division and hold a commanding 4 point lead at the top ahead of the final 3 fixtures. They are looking to become the first Whistlers team to win the top flight of the Doric Insurance sponsored senior leagues since 1995. They were in good form this week courtesy of a comfortable 8-2 victory over 5th placed side Whistlers C. Lawrence Stacey is looking to top the Division 1 averages and is in pole position to do so following another trio of singles wins. Crucially this included a 5 set victory over twin Joshua, who is just behind him in the averages. His other wins came against Mark Pipet and Charlotte Casey in straight sets. Matthew Casey and Ryan Gilson have provided solid support to Stacey this season and each was able to get the better of Pipet and Casey on the night in singles action. The pair also combined well in the doubles by overturning a 2-0 deficit against Stacey and Casey to win over the full 5 set distance. Josh prevented the whitewash due to his straight sets win over Casey and 4 set win over Gilson.
2nd placed side Lions B dropped a point this week after being held to a 5-5 draw by a bottom placed Whistlers A side, who are reaping the benefits of the inclusion of reserve Alice Loveridge for the final round of fixtures. Loveridge had a part to play in 4 of the Whistlers sides rubbers on the night, but had to do it the hard way. She comfortably defeated Andre De Carteret in straight sets, but had to be near her best to get past Phil Ogier and Dan Collenette. She led Ogier 2-0 before the Lions player battled back to force a decider, which she duly took 11-7, whilst Collenette also forced a deciding end in their encounter, having trailed 2-1. She clinched the final game of that encounter 11-6. Her final victory on the night came alongside Dawn Morgan as they earned a 4 set doubles win against Ogier and De Carteret. Morgan picked up the other Whistlers win with a comfortable straight sets win over De Carteret. Ogier and Collenette each beat Morgan and reserve Paula Le Ber in singles action, whilst De Carteret edged past Le Ber over 5 sets in the match opener.
3rd placed side Lions A are 4 points behind their B side, but reduced the gap by 1 point with a 7-3 win over 4th placed side Lions C. Ben Foss and Ryan Bichard led the way firmly for the victors due to their singles wins over Paul Hainsworth, Andy Gill and reserve Jonah Ingrouille. Jamie Ferbrache added a 4 set win over Ingrouille to extend the winning margin. Hainsworth and Gill each beat Ferbrache and also combined well to defeat Foss and Ferbrache in 5 sets in the doubles clash.
Division 2 looks set to have the most exciting finish of all as it still sees Whistlers D leading the way by a single point, but with 2nd placed side Lions D holding a game in hand. One remaining clash is the final meeting between these leading sides and will likely prove pivotal in deciding who the champions are.
The Whistlers side beat Lions F 7-3 this week in a clash where Kay Chivers was unbeaten. She overcame Andrew Ferbrache, Steve Potter and reserve Terry Trustum in singles action as well as winning the doubles alongside Keith Opie over Ferbrache and Potter in 4 sets. Ben Sharp defeated Trustum and Potter, whilst Opie beat Potter in a close 4 set encounter. Ferbrache was the best performer for the Lions side due to wins over Opie and Sharp, whilst Trustum defeated Opie in 4 sets.
Lions D were ruthless 10-0 winners over Lions G this week in a result which increases their advantage in the games ratio factor. Tim Le Page, Carl Le Tissier and Steve Ozanne all defeated Dave Finn, George Eker and Nye Matthew in singles matches. Le Tissier and Ozanne clinched the doubles encounter against Matthew and Eker in 4 sets.
St Pauls B remain 4 points clear at the top and are close to the 3rd Division title following their emphatic 9-1 win over Whistlers G. Derek Carter and John Wills were unbeaten with wins over James Crocker and Robert Naftel, whilst Brian Le Cras overcame Naftel. Carter and Le Cras beat Crocker and Naftel in 5 sets in the doubles.