September 29th, 2016

Stratford are the runaway leaders

Updated: 4:16 pm, May 07, 2015

WEEK ten of the Wildmoor Spa Tennis League saw Stratford move 15 points clear at the top of the Premier Division and they are almost out of sight after another 4-0 win, this time over bottom side Inkberrow.

Meanwhile, nearest challengers Ardencote Manor were beaten 3-1 by Evesham who move to third above Henley on sets difference. Both are on 21 points and trail Ardencote by only two points.

Henley enjoyed a 4-0 victory over Claverdon which leaves the latter only one point clear of the relegation zone. Their nearest rivals for the drop, Littleton, did themselves no harm with a great 3-1 win over Alcester.

Stratford’s Callum Bailey and Chris Marrow overpowered Jim Richardson and Matt Saunders (Inkberrow) 6-1, 6-1 and beat Gordon Keir and Chris Dixon 6-2, 6-1. Tim Page and Will Moreley (Stratford) beat Keir and Dixon 6-2, 6-3 and beat Richardson and Saunders 6-2, 6-3.

Evesham beat previous league challengers Ardencote with a surprise 3-1 victory. John Clarke and Chris Francis (Evesham) began by losing to Ben Summers and John Brain 2-6, 6-7, but then beat Phil Silk and Christian Hardy 6-4, 6-1.

Heroes for Evesham were Andy Crowther and Simon Wall who won both their rubbers, beating Silk and Hardy 6-3, 6-1 and then defeating Summers and Brain 6-3, 6-2.

Henley-in-Arden continued their winning ways with a good 4-0 win over a Claverdon team struggling for consistent form. Neil Supperstone and Jon Hunt beat Pete Thomas and James Courier 6-2, 7-6 and beat Richard Butler and Andy Ashley 6-1, 6-3.

Brett Mackay and Sam Turner beat Butler and Mackay 6-3, 3-6, 1-0 (10-8) on a championship tie-break and then defeated Thomas and Courier 6-2, 3-6, 1-0 (10-4) in another close match.

In the final Premier match Littleton surprised Alcester with a 3-1 win. Littleton opened with a defeat as their pair Richard Herborn and Simon Blewitt lost to Oliver Allman and Matt Poole 4-6, 2-6, but then beat Arthur Bennett and James Morley-Cotterall 6-1, 6-0.

The Littleton coaching pair of Sean Witheford and Dave Rudge proved too strong for both Alcester pairs, beating Bennett and Morley-Cotterall 6-1, 6-1 and then Allman and Poole 6-0, 7-6.

Division One again had only two fixtures with both leaders Studley A and sixth placed Shipston-on-Stour having no matches.

Studley A held on to the lead on 20 points, but had their lead cut to just two points by sister side Studley B when they comfortably beat fourth side Snitterfield 4-0. Third placed Pershore drew 2-2 with fifth placed Aston Cantlow.

In Division Two there were a plethora of matches with a late result seeing leaders Moreton-in-Marsh A drawing 2-2 with Bidford A, but beating Redditch side HDA A 4-0 in their scheduled match to open a ten-point lead at the top.

Whitnash stayed second just ahead of Stratford B on sets difference after both teams drew their matches 2-2 – Whitnash with Alcester B and Stratford B with Claverdon B.

Finally, in a rearranged match bottom side Claverdon B managed to draw 2-2 with mid-table Bidford-on-Avon A.

Division Three saw Ardencote B stay five points clear at the top with 21 points despite a 2-2 draw with bottom team Chipping Campden B. This was because second placed Inkberrow B were also held to a 2-2 draw by third placed Wildmoor Spa A.

Ilmington did their bid to avoid the drop no harm when they beat FISSC 4-0 and have now caught them on 12 points each.

In Division Four leaders Henley-in-Arden B hold a six-point lead after they beat second placed Claverdon C 3-1. Third placed Studley C took advantage to close the gap on Claverdon C to just a solitary point after they had a good 4-0 win over fourth placed Snitterfield B.

Alcester C beat Chipping Campden C 3-1. Littleton B had no match.

In Division Five leaders HDA B of Redditch stayed one point clear on 29 points by beating Wildmoor Spa B 4-0. Challengers Pershore B kept up the pressure with their 4-0 victory over bottom side Inkberrow D 4-0.

Third placed Inkberrow C on 22 points had no match but fourth placed Moreton-in-Marsh B were unable to move up after they were well beaten 3-1 by Bidford-on-Avon B.

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