The first of Hamilton Tennis Club’s handicap tournaments was played last week, with 24 men involved in round-robin doubles matches.
The format is designed to use as many pairs as possible of a similar standard, divided into two groups, to promote long and close games.
The top two pairs from each group went through to knock-out semi-finals where Group A winners Dan Belcher and Nathan Morgans beat veterans Edwin Shufflebotham and Keith Galloway 5-1, and Group B winners Fraser Rabbit-Dalby and Graham Brown saw off Ciaran Boylan and James Greenberry 5-2.
Dan and Nathan started off like an express train in the final to take an early 3-0 lead, but after some encouragement from spectators, Fraser and Graham took their first game, followed by the next two to level.
But Dan and Nathan controlled some of their attacking play and ran out 5-3 winners.
* In league fixtures, Hamilton’s third mixed team of Doug Hacking and Cindy Coulter, Barrie Farnsworth and Jude Plumb, and Graham Hall with Nicky Herbert lost 6-3 to Gynsill.
Doug and Cindy led the team with two sets.
* The fourth mixed team of Steve Plaistow and Davina Adams-Hughes, Graham Brown and Nicky Herbert, and Patrick Whenham-Bossy with Pat Woolston found Hinckley’s third team much too strong for Group 7B and lost 9-0.
* The ladies’ second team of Tracy White and Pat Woolston, Cindy Coulter and Lesley Greaves, and Adele Yanlun with Margaret Shufflebotham lost 8-1 to David Lloyd Seconds.
Tracy and Pat took the consolation set, and the result was enough to retain their position in Group 4B for next season.