The first team again found tough opposition in the two home counties of Essex (3-7) and Middlesex (2-8) with all-but-one sets going according to the TTE ranking list. Kevin Williams and Jason Papierz were drafted in at short notice and Kevin Edwards played in his first major competition in over 9 months after a significant lay-off from hip surgery. Despite Essex missing their original no.2, their two very strong no.1’s more than made up for this shortfall alongside a contribution from their no.3 Trevor Lloyd (remember him?) who stepped up into the no.2 spot on the day. The match against Middlesex was notable for an excellent individual performance by Julie Dean beating her opponent who is nearly 40 TTE ranking places above her; at 2-0 and 10-8 up, Julie injured her foot and whilst being able to stand, she was unable to move. Fortunately, Julie managed to win the third set and the match before retiring hurt for the rest of the day.
The venue was a great hit with all the visiting counties. I think if we offer to host in the future we will get the other counties support.
No reason for Westbury to get a long term acceptance.
With Eddie Roofe’s absence on Saturday we struggled to two 6-4 losses but very credible performances from all the team coping with a man short! Brenda in particular was on her game big time. Ian Packford stood in for Albert who had flu and despite some rustiness played well. I secured two unexpected wins against Somerset 1, but missed out narrowly in the afternoon singles.
Outcome means we need to beat Hants to avoid relegation now. At least its in our own hands. But Saturday would have been 4 points bagged giving us 5 and immediate safety for next season.