14 Jan 2014
Soffe Cup tennis resumed on Saturday with Sanfords Manaia, previously in equal top place with AWE Huatoki, increasing their lead at the top of the table, albeit by 2.5 points.
The South Taranaki side had a comfortable win over Central Finance Rotokare 12-4 at Manaia. After leading 7-1 after the singles it was almost game over. Manaia's women all had comfortable wins, led by Nicole Koch who didn't drop a game against Frances Gray. At No 2, Alesha Ford dropped only 2 games against Tania L'Ami. It was L'Ami's first appearance since the 2011/2012 season due to injury. Maree Gopperth and Trudy Vince were equally as convincing against Julie Foley and Hannah Trevis. In the men's singles Cameron Koch had a tough first set against Ben Pollard before taking it in a tiebreak. He then won the second set 6-0. Kyle Crowley clawed one back for Rotokare beating Beauden Fleming 6-4 6-2. Jacob Gopperth and Josh Murdoch accounted for Shane Devlin and Jaden Hareb respectivey. The men's doubles were shared and both went to 3rd set tie breakers, while the women's doubles were shared.
AWE Huatoki will be pleased with their 9-7 win against a weakened Hareb Deken Motors Oakura side at Huatoki. Although the city side wasn't at full strength they set up the win with a strong singles display to lead 6-2. Huatoki's No 2 Tracey Old beat Bec Scott in three sets and No 3 Georgia Bartosh also won in three sets against Chris Davies. Oakura's No 1 Miaana Walden had little trouble against Huatoki stalwart Chris Wilson, winning 6-3 6-0 and youngster Bailey Bruckner easily beat Chris' daughter Jae Wilson 6-3 6-3. In the men's singles, Huatoki made it a clean sweep, led by No 1 Alaister Nairn with a 6-2 6-4 victory over Len Adamson and No 2 Chris Avery accounting for Heydon Young 6-2 7-5. The Ritchie brothers Jono and Aaron completed the drubbing with easy wins over Keegan Bruckner and Chris Elder respectively. Oakura got the better of Huatoki in the doubles, taking out the top men's match in two tight sets 6-4 7-5 and both women's matches in three set tie breaks. The mixed doubles were shared.
A full-strength Naki Racquets Pukekura moved back into 2nd position on the points table after a resounding 14-2 win over a somewhat depleted Farmlands Okaiawa at Pukekura Park. All matches went to Pukekura in straight sets victories until Pukekura's Michael Fleming had to withdraw from the tie due to injury thus gifting 2 doubles matches to Okaiawa.
As many players are competing in the Naki Raquets Taranaki Junior Open next Saturday there will be no Soffe Cup. The tournament, based at Pukekura Park Tennis Club runs from 18-22 January. It is part of the Tennis Central Points Race.
All A grade divisions resume competition on 25 January.
Soffe Cup Points
Sandfords Manaia 77, Naki Raquets Pukekura 74.5 , AWE Huatoki 74, Hareb Deken Motors Oakura 69.5, Central Finance Rotokare 54, Farmlands Okaiawa 29