The Handicap Tournament came to a close with well fought matches in the five draws.
As the scoring system allows players to be put on a more equal footing in the matches, this competition generally favours new members to the club and improving players as it did this year.
In her second final this year, Emma Olby had a cautious start in the ‘E’ draw against new member Tom Stripp before the points’ difference evened the play after a number of long rallies. Despite Emma missing out on the final point in the second in a close game she won the third, before Tom made a desperate effort to close a points deficit in the fourth and keep the ball in play to win 3-1. In the ‘D’ another new member Nick Batholomew played consistently, reaching some testing boasts to win in three against Martin Penstone.
Henry Doyle had a tough draw in the ‘C’ against Marco Soares whose play has been improving this season. Marco’s strength and drives to the back made the difference as he won in three. There was a huge battle in the ‘B’ as Jon Skipper took control of the first game only for Paul Cox to settle in the second, getting a late run of points to even the scores. The next two games went Jon’s way as he kept the pressure on with good lengths to win 3-1.
In the ‘A’ Ben Nelson and Dave Jump were neck and neck as Dave’s drops were covered by Ben who countered with hard cross-courts. Two games went to the final ‘sudden death’ winning points before Ben drew ahead in the fourth to win 3-1.
In a good run of results in the Sussex League matches, the Weald first’s took away a emphatic 4-1 win over Corals, while the third team had to dig deep on the warm Hove courts to pull back games, eventually winning 4-1 in a very good result. The fifth team also won 4-1 against Dolphin 5.