Sunday, 21 October 2018

Phyllis Court secure national final spot

PHYLLIS COURT reached the GC Inter-Club Championship National final for the first time last week.

Their semi-final victory over Dulwich was the club’s greatest competitive achievement to date.

Phyllis Court making light of the large gaps in the national rankings between the two sides. Top performer was Roger Goldring who won both his morning and afternoon singles matches, re-finding his form after an uncharacteristic poor couple of weeks by his own standard.

Goldring was the first on the score sheet with a two-game win over seasoned tournament player Andrew Dymond but Dulwich struck back smarty when their captain Simon Carter beat Helena Fensome also in straight games.

The first surprise came in the number one and two players’ doubles where Raouf Allim and Chris Roberts caught visitors Pierre Beaudry and Mark Daley cold with a first game win and followed with some good fortune in the second game as patient play froze out their chasing opponents.

Phyllis Court led 2-1 at lunch and with two wins needed from the four remaining singles matches to pull off the shock results.

First home was Goldring again, with a match winning long shot from the boundary to score the decoding hoop 13.

Allim put early match nerves aside to take his singles to a third game decider with his international opponent Beaudry, and their encounter included fine play from both players.

Roberts took his first game against Daley and had spotted Goldring’s win and as he was closing in on what he thought would be the fourth match victory that would close out the fixture for Phyllis Couth.

But with victory only four strokes away, a cheer went up from the other court as Fensome won her match, doing extremely well to close out a pressured third game against Dymond.

Roberts’s win moments later iced Phyllis Court celebrations and Allim’s deciding game was abandoned by mutual agreement with the fixture result in the bag.

The national final will be played on September 22 against Nottingham CC’s international laced team at a venue yet to be decided.

The previous day Phyllis Court’s lost their Southern Federation league title away to perennial rivals Winchester.

Allim and Goldring lost their morning doubles and Fensome also went down in her singles match, leaving only Roberts’ singles win to give hope for the afternoon session.

Goldring succumbed quickly and was followed soon after by Fensome at which point the fixture was lost before Roberts eventually won his second match and Allim tuned up for the cup match with a win against David Nicholson who is ranked in the top 20 the country.

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