In recent years we have had a number of good games against Cannock, so when they turned up for the Mixed game on Thursday with a weaker side than usual, it was something of a surprise. Consequently the result was always going to depend on how good our play was, and although Cannock won two of the nine rubbers, the end result rather flattered them.
So a 7-2 victory means the Mixed 1 are going along well. Stronger games will no doubt be had during the season, starting with local rivals Tiki in our next match, but for now we’re doing well.
The Mens 2 got their season off to a winning start with a long trip to League newcomers Yoxall. A start time of 7.45pm allowed time to get there, but it was only a one-court church hall – just about big enough for a court and a low ceiling (if that brings back memories, you’re showing your age!).
So a long night was expected, with plenty of waiting around making it difficult to ‘switch on’ when it was time to play. With plastics also added to the mix, some tough games followed and eventually it came down to the last rubber of the night. Thankfully the long night ended on a high, with a 5-4 win – however by that time the clock had run round to 11.30pm before they were able to start the journey home (ditto the memories).
Friday evening saw our Ladies travel over to Tipton to take on Hamstead Manor in their first game of the new season. With some new members now playing in the team, it was going to be a difficult test for the new pairings.
After the first four games it was all level at 2-2, so the result hinged on the two ‘split’ games. Sadly, however, neither new combination could pick up their remaining game to see the evening out. So a 4-2 loss in the end, but perhaps a sense of optimism for future games as the pairs get more used to playing together.
Our second home game saw BJF/Aston Villa arrive at the Grammar School – albeit half of them were disappointingly rather late. Fortunately they arrived just as the first game finished, enabling all six pairs to then play more or less continuously in order to get the games finished.
Once again we gave the opposition some good games but as at TP Riley-Norton, there were always a few more errors and cheap points given away than gained. Despite this uphill battle, we still managed to go into the last two games with a chance at 4-3 down. However it wasn’t to be, the match petering out to a final 6-3 loss.
Our Mixed 1 team opened their season last week, and with only one Mixed division this year, there will be plenty of games ahead. As well as being our first Thursday night home match, it was also sadly the last match for Simran before she leaves us for university.
Hamstead Manor were the visitors – always a friendly bunch and some good games guaranteed. Unfortunately an existing injury soon flared up, forcing one of their players to retire after completing only one rubber. The other games saw some good contests, but eventually we ran out 6-3 winners. So a good start to the season and something to build on for the rest of the season.
Tuesday night was our first match of the new season – rather earlier than we normally start – but necessary so we could fit all the games in.
The Mens 1 travelled away to play TP Riley-Norton, which is never an easy prospect, particularly after having been promoted up to Division 1 last season. The end result was a 7-2 loss but with three of the other rubbers going to a third game, we did have some chances to make it closer. Sadly the lack of match practice seemed to cause a few more errors – if we can reduce those it would make it so much easier!
So a slightly disappointing start – while it was unlikely we could have nicked the result, a closer result would have been nice, but it showed we’re not too far off the level we need to be playing at. Next up later this week is our first Thursday night home game, with the Mixed 1 hosting Hamstead Manor.
It’s that time of year where the new League season rolls into view once again – and this year there are a few differences!
The biggest change is undoubtedly the addition of a third night just for matches. With the large numbers now turning up regularly for club nights, and no possibility of booking extra courts on those nights, taking two courts away for matches wasn’t really an option. So the decision has been taken to book two courts on Thursday evenings for all our home matches. Club members are welcome to come down and cheer our teams on in any of the matches – pom-poms are optional!
As well as an extra night, we’ve also entered a second Mixed team in the League. Sadly other clubs have had to drop teams resulting in just the one division. This means plenty of games for each team including, of course, two inter-club matches – a chance for some friendly rivalry no doubt!
And finally the summer has brought some new faces to our teams for the upcoming season, the unfortunate loss of Alan Lee as his job search took him to pastures new and the exit of those returning to their studies away from home. Good luck to Simran and Beth as they start university, and to Isha, Dan and Sunil as they continue – we look forward to seeing you back at the club sometime in the holidays.
Friday saw our last match of the season, with the Ladies travelling away to Three Spires. As they had already won the Ladies title, it was never going to be an easy night! Three Spires weren’t taking it lightly either and unfortunately it resulted in another 6-0 loss.
So a difficult season for our Ladies – plenty of effort and endeavour, some close games in a good number of the matches, but sadly not much to show for it at the end of the season.
Tuesday night also saw the last match of the season for the Mens 2 – an away trip to TP Riley-Norton 3. Sadly they were only able to field two pairs, swaying the result, but we still managed to win four of the remaining 6 games to record a 7-2 win.
So a good result to finish the season and thank you to all those who have played a part. If we can continue the good work on improving the understandiung between our pairings, hopefully it will set us up for a potential challenge for promotion next year.
As we moved into April, so the end of the season looms. The last two matches for the Mens 1 were the two ties against Cannock – the Monday before Easter at home, with the return leg on the Tuesday after Easter. And after the loss to BJF, we needed to win both to claim the title and promotion to Division One.
The home tie saw some long games as both sides battled for the result. Eventually the stubborn resistance was overcome and we ran out 7-2 winners. Last night’s away tie saw a return to playing with plastics and some unexpected difficulties in some of the rubbers. Having got to a 4-1 lead there was a brief wobble that looked like it might come down to the last two games. But consistency eventually won out, resulting in a final score of 6-3 and promotion – with a celebratory curry afterwards!