Lefevre and Crosby combine to complete hatrick
A popular feature of the County Schools Tournaments is to give all the competitors as many games as possible. A good entry for the Under 14s event meant that every singles player had at least five games, while a few played nine times.
With 24 players, the boys event became a marathon. Played as a round robin in five groups, the first two in each group progressed to the next round, which was also played in groups, rather than the usual knock-out format. Eventually, Kurtis Lefevre (Notre Dame), Adam Stubbing (KES), Craig Thomas (Costessey) and Mark Robinson (Acle) reached the semi-finals. In the first game, Lefevres extra power and greater consistency were the decisive factors in a 15-7 victory. At the other end of the draw, Thomas and Robinson both played very well, with Thomas building what appeared to be a commanding lead at 12-6, only for Robinson to draw level at 12 all. But in the end, Thomas came out on top 15-12. However, Robinson is still eligible to play in the Under 12s tournament in March,
The final was a match full of high class rallies and very competitive play, which Lefevre eventually won 15-4, a scoreline which was not a true reflection of the actual play.
Lefevre and Thomas were the clear favourites to win the boys doubles event, beating Ashley Robb (Thorpe St Andrew) and Andrew Carrier (Notre Dame) 15-4 in the first semi-final. Robinson and Luke Cox (Acle) played very well to overcome Stubbing and Daniel Farrow (Hobart) in their semi-final 15-10, to set up a final which was arguably the best match of the tournament. Every point was well fought, the score was always close and there were some excellent long rallies, with few unforced errors. At 12 all, it was anyones match, but Lefevre and Thomas managed a little extra to win the title 15-12.
There were fewer players in the girls events, but the games were no less competitive. Charlotte Crosby (Hethersett) reached the singles final by beating Emma Davies (Norwich High School) 15-7, while Rebecca Heeles (Thorpe House) overcame Jessica Rutherford (Gt. Yarmouth) 15-10. This set up a repeat of the County Under
15s final, in which the fast improving Heeles beat Crosby to become county champion. Crosby went on court focussed to regain her county supremacy, with Heeles under pressure to repeat her earlier victory and, after a very good match, it was Crosby who took the schools title with a 15-9 scoreline.
The two girls then teamed up to win the level doubles, beating Davies and Rutherford who took second place.
In the mixed doubles Lefevre and Crosby were both keen to pull off a hat trick of wins,
and beat Stubbing and Davies in the deciding match, ending the day unbeaten as triple champions.
In the boys singles consolation/plate event, Daniel Harvey proved too strong for Warren Hughes, winning the final 15-2, which was a somewhat surprising scoreline,since Hughes had beaten Harvey earlier in the competition.
The Under 16s Schools Championships will take place on February 4, with the Under 12s following on March11. Further information and entry forms are available from Robin Cooper on 01362 858026.