JUNIOR DEVELOPMENT DIVISION 1 – 16.03.19 - DAY 5
RACE FOR RUNNERS-UP SPOT LENDS SPICE TO FINAL MEETING
Before play began on Day 5, Cleeve Park A on 39 had already claimed the title but that didn’t diminish anyone’s enthusiasm for the competition. Tandridge A had 26, Darenth A 19, Amherst A 17 with Cleeve Park B on 11 and South Croydon A on eight.
All the matches were decided by large margins but nonetheless keenly contested with several sets going the distance and many to four games.
Probably the best match of this Round was the Cleeve Park derby – B (Jake Murrison-Waller/Nick Hurst) and A (Ben Turgoose/Chris Chin). The opening singles typified what was to follow – a cracking five game set between Murrison-Waller and Turgoose. The lefthanded Murrison-Waller led 2-1 by virtue of pinching the third 12-10. Turgoose responded and took the next two. The second set was no less close, a four game affair between Hurst and Chin. Chin dropped the first but battled his way through in four. The A won the doubles for a winning lead. Murrison-Waller was in for more hard work against Chin who eventually pulled through in five, having been pegged back to two games all. Turgoose wasn’t letting Hurst off the hook either so it was a 5-0 for the A.
Darenth A (Ben McKay/Matthew James) began well against Tandridge A (Izaac Duncan-King/Tom Byrne) with McKay beating Duncan-King. Byrne then beat James in four so it was one set all. Tandridge won the doubles and then added both the reverse singles though they needed a fourth games in each to achieve their 4-1 victory.
South Croydon A were at a disadvantage from the outset as they only had Dominic Faulkner. Someone was found to keep him company and they took on Amherst A’s Yiannis Papadopoulos and Daniel Henderson. Amherst therefore had three bonus points but the sets that counted were quite close. However, the end results was 5-0 to Amherst A.
Prior to the final Round Cleeve Park A had 44, Tandridge A were on 30, Amherst A on 22 and Darenth A on 20. Cleeve Park B and South Croydon A remained on 11 and eight respectively.
There were a number of changes in line up for the final Round and Tandridge A (Byrne/Duncan-King) found themselves up against Amherst A’s pocket rockets Sam Arnott and Felipe Fujimori. Although Amherst won this match 5-0, they couldn’t and didn’t take too many risks as being taken to a fourth games in three sets shows.
South Croydon A were at last at full strength when Gosinachid Egbeama arrived – having missed the turning off the M25 earlier. He joined Faulkner for the match against Cleeve Park B who had a completely different line up – Tayo Hing and Vaibhav Ashwin. It was a 5-0 to Cleeve Park B but what a scrap Egbeama put up for South Croydon, taking his two sets to five games.
Darenth A likewise had a change, Konrad Johnson coming in to partner McKay. It was a bit of a tough one playing Cleeve Park A (Turgoose/Chin). Cleeve Park looked comfortable for the first three sets but then had to go up a gear or two as Chin lost in four to Johnson and Turgoose got a real run for his money where he only just managed to pull through against McKay 12-10, 11-8, 14-16, 12-10.
Cleeve Park A were thus declared champions on 48, Tandridge A claimed second spot on 30 and Amherst A had 27, Darenth 21, Cleeve Park B 16 and South Croydon A eight. It was a pity Amherst A had to concede 10 points in the fourth Round because they were representing Kent at the English Schools South Region finals in Bristol – it could so easily have made a big difference. However, whoever plays on the final day, if they didn’t collect a “pot”, gets a participation medal, now a Sevenoaks tradition. Congratulations to those who achieved 100% and to Cleeve Park A on becoming champions.