Promotion to the top tier is within Bourne’s grasp

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Bourne A, the tennis club’s junior team, survived a scare in their double-header against bottom-half Baston to scrape a 5-3 win.

Still at the top of division two, they remain unbeaten but were tested throughout.

Matt Hassall and June Ross looked to be in for a tight clash against Baston’s first pair, and so it proved as the first set followed serve until a break in the eighth game handed Baston the first set.

In the second set, Matt and June made a much more promising start but couldn’t quite close out the match from 3-1 and 4-3 up, passing up two set points in losing 4-5, 4-5.

Tom Hill and Jack Mangieri’s rubber followed a similar vein, but their greater match experience shone through as they pulled clear from 3-3 in both sets to win 6-3, 6-3 and leave the match level at the halfway point.

Matt and June stepped up a gear in their second rubber, out-hitting their opponents in an untroubled 8-1, 8-1 win that left Tom and Jack needing just a single set from their final rubber. However, having dropped the first set, they let slip a 4-1 lead in the second before an intelligent, gritty service game from Jack at 4-4 claimed the set and the match for Bourne in the day’s very last game.

The 5-3 victory will count as two separate wins because of previous postponements, and promotion to division 1 for the first time is now well within Bourne’s hands.

Deeping C’s promotion aspirations were dealt a huge blow in the winter tennis season as, after a 2-6 loss to Bourne A last week, Bourne B repeated the scoreline at Langtoft.

Iain Ross and Keith Wallace proved too strong for Deeping, dropping just seven games as their experience proved decisive. They managed to reinforce a 6-3, 9-0 opening rubber win with an 8-1, 6-3 victory.

With Iain and Keith in such imperious form and never in danger of dropping a set, Nigel Bridgewater and Richard Worth provided the finishing touches, racing away with the first set on both occasions before being pegged back in a tight second, drawing first 8-1, 5-4 then 8-1, 6-3.

A second successive 6-2 defeat for the previously undefeated Deeping C leaves them off the pace set by Bourne A in the title race.