MEN'S B - MATCH REPORT
Won - 1-7
As well as the long awaited return of our Captain we were also blessed with sunshine for our trip to Chinnor to do battle with their A Team who are second in the league by one point from Blewbury’s B Team.
With Andrea, Martino, Peter WY and Crispy we had a truly European/Antipodean/British feel to our squad. Even Article 50 could not dampen our spirits.
Andrea & Martino paired up as No. 1 whilst Peter & Crispy road shot gun as No. 2 Pair.
After a 20 min warm up we were ready.
Peter and Crispy had a nervous but solid start and it soon became clear what their strategy to win had to be “don’t hit it to the really good player!”
We were down 4-1 to the home team but implementation of our simple strategy began to bear fruit and we took the next five games to win the first set 4-6 against Chinnor’s 1st pair.
Perhaps just happy that we would at least split the first rubber we relaxed and Chinnor took a 4-2 lead. But Peter & Crispy both remembered and implemented their cunning strategy and won 5 of the next 6 games to take the second set 5-7. What a great present for our returning Captain.
In the next rubber the pace of Andrea & Martino was too much for Chinnor’s second pair that they were unable to participate in the second rubber due to injury.
Bit of a false victory but a win is a win as far as the records are concerned. It meant 0-6 and 0-6 to Crispy and Peter, four sets to zero in total.
On the other court Andrea and Martino had a fast start against Chinnor’s second pair, breaking their serve in the first game. It was only when the youngest member of their team broke his strings and started playing with Andrea’s racquet that they won a couple of games.
Luckily, a replacement racquet soon arrived, putting the set back on due course. First set: 6-3 Norham.
With no change of racquet, the Norham pair sailed through the second set for an easy 6-0. Later, it became clear that the victory was facilitated by an injury to their more experienced player. We just thought we were that good!
The second rubber turned out to be much more even. The sun and a football match just next to the courts became an added distraction.
Andrea and Martino alternated some good tennis and some unforced errors but they still managed to close the first set 6-4 in their favour.
The second set saw a lot of broken serves. Andrea struggled with several double-faults and the Norham pair dug themselves down to 2-5. They did manage to get back to 4-5 with some excellent returns on their strongest player’s serve only to concede the set 4-6.
Unfortunately, the Italian-Swiss pair did not manage to successfully implement the strategy the more experienced pair suggested beforehand. Too bad because the one set would have taken Norham to a 50% record.