In a wet and windy Hull Cambridgeshire U18 boys pitted their wits against North of Scotland, Hampshire and Isle of White and West of Scotland in that order.
Initially we were finding our feet which meant that we had a slow start going down 0-3 to North of Scotland. However strong performances from Darius, Zach and Yujiro meant we levelled up after the singles 3-3. Going into the doubles with all to play for, momentum shifts were all around. Yujiro and Ethan playing at pair one again got off to a slow start, but then having been 0-3 down they got their act together and demolished their opponents thereon 6-3, 6-1. Next to finish were pair three, we had Charlie and Matt which went down to a match tie break also having their chances with a match point, however it wasn’t to be with their opponents pulling through in crucial moments winning 11-9 in the match tie break. Last to finish were pair two with Zach and Darius fighting with everything they had but it just wasn’t to be. A painful yet motivating lost of the first day 4-5 to eventual group winners.
Day two facing a very strong team on paper in Hampshire and Isle of White our numbers 6,5, 4 and 3 were all involved in very close battles, three of which going the full distance in three sets. We could have quietly easily been 4-0 up rather than 4-0 down. Another very strong performance from Zach meant we were still in the tie and number one Yujiro was up against a brick wall in Louie and could not quite dismantle the wall. This meant we had already lost going into the doubles. It was a great opportunity to practice some doubles skills and send a bit of a message going into our relegation battle on day three.
We were all fired up to battle hard and save relegation on day three. Charlie got us off to a flyer putting on a very disciplined and professional performance. Matt and Ethan fought hard however we found ourselves 2-1 down after the first three singles rubbers. Darius was very clinically levelling us up at 2-2. Zach had a serious part to play in this story with yet another well earnt victory in three sets. Our pair three doubles in Leon and Eduardo were sent on whilst Yujiro was playing his singles. Leon and Eduardo were ruthless demolishing their opponents in quick time setting Yujiro up to clinch staying in group three for next year.
Some valuable lessons have been learnt. All part of the journey and bring on next year.