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Bonus point victory keeps men's first team in the hunt for promotion

Oakham Tennis Club duo Debbie Powell and Jane Wood produced one of their finest-ever performances as the ladies first team ran out 7-2 winners against Roundhill.

They were 8-0, 8-0, 8-0 winners in their matches to help the ladies cement their hold on third spot with one match remaining.

In one of their rare appearances together this season, Wood and Powell worked so well together as the latter drove to within centimetres of the base line while the former cut off the return.

Dan Potter (13571274)
Dan Potter (13571274)

Time after time and, no matter what the opponents threw at them, Powell and Wood had an answer in an impressive display.

Second strings Sam Harris and Helen Foster had few problems until they faced the Roundhill firsts.

It was nip and tuck all the way with testing tennis from corner to corner until a tiebreak sent the Rutlanders tumbling to defeat.

Jane Gilmore and Jackie Staines also found the Roundhill firsts awkward at the start of play as they battled to keep up with them, reaching 6-6 before losing the last two games. They won their following rubbers though without a problem.

The ladies seconds went to top-of-the-league Leicestershire with a slightly-changed side but returned with a 6-3 success.

Mel Jarret and Laura Reekie took time to get used to the sandy courts but, once settled, they beat the thirds and went on to defeat the seconds 8-0.

Their game against the firsts looked like running away from them when two or three forced errors by their opposite number brought them back to 7-7 where another tie-break eventually went to Oakham.

Captain Anne Boyce and Jackie Staines began well, beating the first pair 8-5 and kept up their steady tennis, winning by the same margin all night.

Sara Clifford and Kay Copeland had a taste of a higher league standard but didn’t cave in. They stuck in to make the opposition play carefully and the experience will help them next year if their usual team is promoted.

Richard Breag (13571277)
Richard Breag (13571277)

A hastily-rearranged Oakham men’s first team took the bonus point after a 6-3 home success over David Lloyd at the Vale.

Without skipper Jack Hubbard, Dan Potter partnered Richard Breag and together they made a forceful pair.

They overpowered the seconds and thirds before facing the firsts in a last rubber which was exciting to watch with testing rallies from all parts of the courts.

The visitors were left wanting though as Potter and Breag worked tirelessly to force errors.

Gordon Reekie and Peter Farrar joined forces for the first time in this team this year.

They took little time against the thirds, winning 8-0, but the visitors’ firsts exposed their weaknesses before Farrar and Reekie made short work of the seconds, winning 8-3.

Third strings Jeremy Wood and substitute Ally Orr had no problems with their opposite number, but were overpowered by the firsts.

Their rubber against the seconds nearly went to them, but a couple of close calls went against the Oakham duo.

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