LMH’s Churchillian effort clinches match

Cuppers Tennis LMH 7 – 5 St Johns LMH’s second pair of Rob Churchill and Mark Holmquist
held their nerve in a crucial tiebreak to seal their side’s
second victory over St John’s in a week. After an intense set, in which John’s seconds Will Jessop
and Ben Coffer won through five deuces in the last game,
Churchill, reacting quickly at the net, hit two volleys to clinch
the tie-break 7-3. Churchill and Holmquist had struggled to start
against John’s first pair Matt Wain and James Gubb, who won
6-2. LMH first pair, Joyce and Rogers then pressurised Churchill
and Holmquist, leading to unforced errors from both pairs at the
net. As a result, service was broken in four games in a row
before LMH closed out the set 6- 3. Coffer and Jessop also managed to gain early initiative
against Bamford and Jackson, but were were gradually worn down.
They broke both Jackson’s service games but Bamford’s
powerful delivery held, and two double faults by Coffer at 3-4
were crucial. Wain and Gubb, meanwhile, beat Lonsdale and Dennis
6-1. Two-set matches between facing pairs followed and
John’s took a 4- 1 lead in the battle of the heavyweights.
From there, LMH were able to pull John’s out of position and
Jackson’s volleys continued to win points – they did
not hold serve often enough and it was pertinent that a double
fault ended the set at 7-5 to the visitors. With Lonsdale and Dennis winning and LMH a long way ahead on
the total number of games, the second pair’s first set was
destined to be decisive. The first game, held by LMH, lasted
eleven minutes, and was followed by four consecutive breaks.
John’s then strode into a 5-3 lead, only to find themselves
5-6 down after LMH attacked Jessop’s serve well from the
baseline. Though Coffer and Jessop took their set to 6-6, Churchill and
Holmquist saw LMH through and John’s conceded the second
set. Johns’ disappointment compounds a heavier defeat in the
two sides’ league encounter, which ended 9-3.ARCHIVE: 4th week TT 2004