17 Dec 2017
It was a Saturday of tight tussles in each of the three Soffe Cup ties.
Oakura managed to do just enough with a sets countback win over Pihama. Jordan Fleming will be lamenting the set he dropped to Graeme Mitchell. As will Ngakura Osbourne and Laura Edmonds, with the set they dropped to Jackie Keenan and Poppy Mitchell before winning 12-10 in the deciding tie breaker.
Huatoki managed to head off Okaiawa/Manaia 9-7. After the singles Huatoki were up by 5 matches to 3. They then extended the lead by winning 3 out of the four doubles rubbers. This left Okaiawa/Manaia needing to win all the mixed doubles matches to force a count back. They won three and the match they lost was decided in a tie breaker. Another tie where the result would have still been in doubt at the very end of the day.
Rotokare overcame Pukekura 10-6. Whilst this might appear a relatively
comfortable win, on closer inspection of the score sheet it is clear to see that
the day would have felt much closer than that for the players. Pukekura was
actually leading after the singles by five matches to three. Rotokare then took
the lead by winning all of the doubles. Mark Belcher—in his first Soffe Cup
outing—and David Barnard will be wondering where they went wrong. Having
collected the first set 6-4 they then went on to lose 7-6 in the second set and
10-8 in the deciding tie breaker. It is extremely frustrating to lose two tie
breakers in a row. Malcolm Elder and Blair Crowley tipped the tie Rotokare’s way
with this win.
Cleverly, Rotokare chose to play their top woman in the second mixed doubles pairing, as Rai was more than capable of dominating the match at number one. Beattie did her job well in the second pairing and the tie belonged to Rotokare. To top things off, Shane Devlin (team captain) and Chantelle Peters also won to stretch the margin of victory even further.
Soffe now takes a break until after Christmas.
Starting on Wednesday 27th December and Concluding on 30th December is the 2017 NZ Lawn Tennis Championships & Tier 3 Taranaki Open. This event is played on the grass in Hawera. Entries must be received no later than 5pm on Friday 22nd December 2017.
Huatoki 9 Okaiawa/Manaia 7, Oakura 8 Pihama 8 (Oakura win 19-17 on sets countback), Rotokare 10 Pukekura 6
Huatoki 2 Rotokare 14, Matapu 9 Inglewood 7, Stratford 9 Hawera 7, Oakura 4 Pukekura 12
Pukekura Green 4 Pukekura Yellow 12, Oakura 1 Waitara 15, South Combined 9 Waiwaka 7, Huatoki bye
Cup as 17 December 2017
Oakura 50.5, Pukekura 46.5, Rotokare 40, Huatoki 31.5, Okaiawa/Manaia 30.5, Pihama 30
Trophy as 17 December 2017
Stratford 64, Pukekura 60.5, Inglewood 60, Hawera 46, Rotokare 44.5, Matapu 42.5, Oakura 28, Huatoki 23
Sumpter Trophy as at 17 December 2017Pukekura Yellow 51, South Combined 48, Waitara 46, Waiwaka 32, Pukekura Green 27.5, Oakura 16.5, Huatoki 5