7 February 2010

All the leading players are beginning to show their hands in Soffe Cup after eight rounds of the competition, providing a slightly clearer picture in the race for the playoffs.
Sanfords Manaia put the stranglehold on Hareb Deken Oakura early in the match and never eased up as they completed an 11-5 victory in Manaia on Saturday.

Manaia clean-swept the men's singles- Cameron Koch and Jordan Fleming were both very impressive in their straight set triumphs against quality opponents Graham Mitchell and John Hardie Boys respectively.  Nicole Koch beat Sue Oldfield in the top ladies match 6-4 6-0, extending her unbeaten run in Soffe Cup this season.  Miaana Walden escaped a tight second set tiebreak over Sarah Kelly 6-1 7-6 (9-7).  Walden performed very well to earn three valuable wins for her side.  Grace Kelly thereafter edged out Louise Brankin 7-6 0-6 7-6 (10-6) at No. 4 for Manaia.

In the doubles Oakura managed to win both ladies matches to give themselves an outside chance of at least attaining a draw subject to winning all four combines ties.  Alas they could only manage to win one of the four combines- Hardie Boys and Walden teaming up to win 9-5 over Fleming and Sarah Kelly.  Manaia were simply too strong all day and it finally tolled in the combines.  The pairings of Mills/ M. Gopperth and J. Gopperth/ G. Kelly both chalked up straight-forward victories before C. Koch/ N. Koch came through in the top mixed doubles 9-7.  Manaia are beginning to assert themselves - as they usually do at the business end of the season- as real title threats, especially as a home semi-final and final loom larger with every victory.


AWE Huatoki beat Stumble Inn Waiwaka 13-3 at the Waiwaka courts on Saturday.

Jono Ussher exacted a tennis clinic in beating quality opponent Mike Lace 6-1 6-1.  The rest of Huatoki's men then followed suit: Amrit Rai toppled David Lace 7-5 6-4; David Geange overcame Michael Lloyd 6-1 6-0; and David Innes scrapped his way to victory 6-3 7-6 (7-3) over Simon Momich.

Waiwaka was lead in its defiance by Krystal Oakes who carried on her good form from rep duties last weekend to beat Saori Han in the top womens match 6-3 6-4.  She then teamed up with Michelle Lace to beat Han and Janice Taylor in the top ladies doubles match 6-4 6-4.  Oakes couldn’t quite manage to complete the trifecta however, just losing out in the combines with Mike Lace against Han and Ussher 9-8 (7-4).

The remaining women's singles were very closely fought: Alice Caskey pulled a get out of jail free card from her pocket to beat Michelle Lace 7-5 6-4 after trailing Lace 0-5 in the first set. Melissa Wong and Janice Taylor also achieved admirable comebacks, after appearing on the brink of defeat, to remerge victorious in third set super tie-breaks- Wong beating Chris Wilson 0-6 6-4 7-6 (10-3); and Taylor winning 2-6 6-4 7-6 (10-8) over Sharon Bruce.  Huatoki won the remaining three doubles convincingly before sneaking home all four combines to defy their recent chequered history having previously lamented their inability in that area.  Han and Ussher beat Lace and Oakes 9-8 (7-4), Rai and Wilson 9-6 victors over David and Michelle Lace, and Innes and Taylor beat Momich and Bruce 9-8.

Central Finance Rotokare and Tariki Icon Sports Pukekura played out an 8-8 draw at the Rotokare courts on Saturday.


Wilson Trophy

Waiwaka 10 Waitara 6, Inglewood 11 Huatoki 5, Okaiawa 11 Hawera 5,


Sumpter Trophy
Huatoki 10 Stratford 6, Okaiawa 12 Hawera 4,


Points Table
Soffe Cup
AWE Huatoki 90, Sanfords Manaia 87, Central Finance Rotokare 82, Hareb Deken Oakura 79, Tariki Icon Sports Pukekura 58, Stumble Inn Waiwaka 57