Grafton scores tightest of wins over Wigmore

In contention for final place…

On another perfect Millennium Cup day Grafton kept themselves in the frame for the final with the tightest of wins over Wigmore on Saturday 9 June.

Wigmore made the early running taking the first round 3-1: Pratha Mehandran allowed Alan Sheehan a single game and John Maclean proved ‘die-hard’ tough as he gave Grafton’s Paul Flatters little opportunity taking the vets 6-2 6-2.

Amelia Cornish clawed a vital rubber back for Grafton with a gritty 6-4 6-2 win over Elsie Fairn digging in from 1-4 down in the first. 

This left the boys battling out what proved to be one of the matches of the day: Michael Sotillo (G) v Billy O’Dwyer (W).

The match hinged on a monumental game with Billy serving at 5-4, with 6 deuces, long rallies, an immaculate lob from Michael to earn a game point that he couldn’t convert , tumbling onto his back on set point, leaving Billy the easiest of volleys as his opponent groped for his racket.

Billy missed (!) but eventually took the set 6-4.

Ice packs were then required for both boys and Billy’s volleying was the difference in the second to help him to 6-3. Great match!

The Grafton ladies then powered in to turn the match on its head: Kath Bower raced to a 6-1 6-0 win over Lucy Gray, while Linda Patto kept Grafton’s stalwart vet Maureen Kenny on court longer but succumbed 1-6 4-6 .

In the ladies doubles, Sophie Oliver & Danielle Wade (G) beat Alex MacAdam & Jenny Burton by the same margin, with the second set in the balance at 4-3 to Wigmore but Sophie & Dani promptly reeled off three in a row, thanks to some line-painting and fine volleying from the Grafton pair for the win.

Wigmore’s pair Julian Stubbs & Thomas MacMullan, graduating from the juniors, took it to the wire with a gutsy 6-3 6-0 win over Tim Bannerjee & Rick Jakubowski. Tight first set. 

So it came down to a nail-biting mixed on the Show Court and the crowd wasn’t going anywhere.

Wigmore’s Nick Eastwood & Doris Ko edged the first 6-3, thanks not least to Nick’s power serving.

Emma Webb’s serve kicked in and wily vet Murray Sutton’s drops and lobs were falling right to race them to 4-0, only to be pegged back before nervily levelling at 6-4.

Murray & Emma kept it between the lines and were always ahead in the breaker, nailing it with a couple of angled cross-courts from Murray who has lost count of his Millennium Cup appearances!

A great days tennis, which sets up a showdown with Norbury to decide Telford’s opponents in the Final. 

Report by Murray Sutton, Captain Grafton LTC


Grafton SR&T Club d Wigmore LTC, 5-4

[Grafton names first]

Women’s Singles: Kath Bower d Lucy Gray, 6-1 6-0; Men’s Singles: Alan Sheehan lost to Pratha Mehandran, 6-1 6-0; Women’s Over 40 Singles: Maureen Kenny d Linda Patto, 6-1 6-4; Men’s Over 45 Singles: Paul Flatters lost to John McClean, 6-2 6-2; Girls Under 16 Singles: Amelia Cornish d Elsie Fairn, 6-4 6-2; Boys Under 16 Singles: Michael Sotillo lost to Billy C Dwyer, 6-4 6-3; Women’s Doubles: Sophie Oliver & Danielle Wade d Jenny Burton & Alex McAdam, 6-1 6-4; Men’s Doubles: Tim Bannerjee & Rick Jakubowski lost to Thomas MacMullan & Julian Stubbs, 6-3 6-0; Mixed Doubles: Murray Sutton & Emma Webb d Nick Eastwood & Doris Ko, 3-6 6-4 [10-4].