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Wroxall B’s Disappointing Start

Wroxall B’s opening match of the season was away to Newport B at the Drill Hall Newport on Thursday 19th October.

This newly formed team, comprised of some well established Wroxall players and two who were not only new to Wroxall but to League competition as well, did not, unsurprisingly, perform as well as the ‘A’ team have currently been doing.

It always takes a new team a few games to find their feet and develop their own style of play and that was certainly evident here.

The 1st set saw the new kids on the block, Simon Jilley & Callie Hatcher up first, and considering it was their first time playing together in a League competition, they put on a fine performance. It was a close fight with a lot of really good rallies, but unfortunately Simon & Callie just lost out in two games 21-16, 21-19, to put Newport in front 1-0.

Set 2 saw newly appointed team Captain Harry Rann paired with Jill ‘Tiger’ Osborne, and even Harry would agree that it is fair to say that he wasn’t on the best of form for his season opener. Whether it was a slight case of nerves at being captain for the first time or simply being a little bit rusty after the summer break, he & Jill couldn’t quite find the form needed and lost in two games also at 21-14 and 21-12 respectively to put Newport further ahead at 2-0.

The 3rd set saw Trevor ‘Three Games’ Duffield & Jenny Gardner on court next and in this instance Trevor couldn’t quite live up to his soubriquet as he and Jenny also suffered a two game, 21-15, 21-13 loss to bring Newport now up to a 3-0 lead in the match. The question now was, could Wroxall make any inroads into Newport’s lead?

The result of set number 4 would suggest a positive in that regard as the first men’s pairing of Simon Jilley & Harry Rann were up next and gave Wroxall some hope.

The first game didn’t go to plan and went to Newport at 21-16. However, Simon & Harry quickly found their rhythm as a pair and set about rescuing the set in the subsequent two games, 16-21, 15-21, to bring the match score back to 3-1 in Newport’s favour.

Set 5 saw another close match involving another first time pairing of Callie Hatcher & Jill Osborne, who, despite losing the set; fought for it every inch of the way. They lost the first 21-14, but fought back in the second to win 18-21, but couldn’t quite maintain the pace in the third and lost 21-10. Match score now 4-1 to Newport.

This was now looking like Newport’s match to lose, but Wroxall weren’t going down without a fight and the 6th set demonstrated that clearly as the pairing of Simon Jilley & Trevor Duffield almost pulled another one back for Wroxall. But it was not to be as the Wroxall pair fought an incredibly tough 22-20 first game and an almost as close 21-18 second game to just lose out. Close but no cigar! 5-1 was the score now, and the match to Newport.

Unfortunately the 7th set provided no relief for Wroxall either as, the ladies pair of Callie Hatcher & Jenny Gardner struggled to find their feet as a team and went down to a straight two game loss at 21-11, 21-11 to put Newport even further ahead at 6-1.

However, Wroxall weren’t quite finished for the evening and produced one final hurrah, with Harry Rann & Trevor Duffield putting in a great performance.

The first game was a really tight, point for point match with Harry & Trevor emerging the eventual victors at 20-22, and then picking up the pace to take the second in a slightly easier 13-21 win to claw another set back for Wroxall to bring the score line to 6-2.

With the 9th and final set now upon us the question on everyone’s lips was, could the final ladies pair of Gill Osborne & Jenny Gardner add to Wroxall’s meagre tally for the evening?. Sadly, alas, for Wroxall the answer was no, as, despite putting up a good showing Gill & Jenny lost out in this last set by 21-14, 21-10 to leave a final result of 7-2 to Newport.

Many congratulations to Newport B on their fine win, I’m sure they’ll do well in the League this year.

Wroxall B and their supporters shouldn’t, however, be disheartened by this result. It is, after all, as previously stated; a brand new team with some players who are new to league competition. Overall it wasn’t a bad first outing and on first look showed a lot of promise for the rest of the season. I’m sure that once Harry Rann settles in to his new role as team captain and the team find their own style and rhythm of playing together, we will rapidly see improvements in their performance.

Their next match is a home one at Wroxall Community Centre on Monday 30th October against Cowes B starting at 7:00pm, so we’ll see what happens then.

See you there!

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