This season's closest round in the Craigs Investment Partners Marlborough Premier interclub tennis competition eventuated at the Forrest Winery Marlborough Tennis Centre on Wednesday night when exactly half of the 24 individual matches went to super tie-breaks.
Despite that, the biggest news of round eight was unbeaten competition leaders Marlborough Foxes going down 4-2 to Rapaura Drylands One.
Although heavy rain in the morning meant Rapaura were unable to have home court advantage on grass, they adapted well to Pollard Park's hard courts to upset Foxes.
Neil Sonne and Lee Harborne, of Foxes, continued their unbeaten run in men's doubles with a three set victory, but Rapaura squared the ledger when Anthony Walkenhorst and Kate Shield came from a set down to win the mixed doubles. Harborne got Foxes second point with a 6-1 6-3 win over Tony Fenemor, but triumphs to Walkenhorst, Shield and Yuichi Ando sealed the result for Rapaura. Walkenhorst and Sonne had an epic battle in the No 1 men's singles match, the Rapaura man prevailing 6-4 2-6 10-8.
With two rounds remaining before Christmas, second-placed Drylands One's win took them to within eight points of Foxes.
In other matches, Marlborough Stars held firm in third overall with a 4-2 win against Marlborough Rockets. A come-from-behind victory for Stars No 1 Hamish Morrow over Blair Harvey was the highlight of that tie.
Four matches went to super tie-breaks in Marlborough Dragons' 4-2 win over Marlborough Jigsaw. Dragons' Josh Watson had his first senior interclub win over Logan Croad, while Donna Clark got past Kate Rawcliffe 10-7 in a third set super tie-break.
After losing both doubles matches, Marlborough Bullets won all four singles to beat Rapaura Drylands Two 4-2. The tightest match of the fixture saw Bullets' Josh Winter hold his nerve to defeat Ben Burridge 6-1 4-6 15-13.
RESULTS ROUND EIGHT
Marlborough Foxes 2 lost to Rapaura Drylands One 4: Neil Sonne lost to Anthony Walkenhorst 6-4 2-6 10-8, Lee Harborne beat Tony Fenemor 6-1 6-3, Nick McLauchlan lost to Yuichi Ando 6-4 6-4, Tiffany Cross lost to Kate Shield 6-4 6-3, Sonne & Harborne beat Fenemor & Ando 6-4 5-7 10-1, McLauchlan & Cross lost to Walkenhorst & Shield 2-6 6-1 11-9.
Marlborough Stars 4 beat Marlborough Rockets 2: Hamish Morrow beat Blair Harvey 4-6 6-2 10-5, Hiro Kishida lost to Jean-Luc Hauswirth 6-4 6-2, Charlie Mercer lost to Jason Flowerday 6-7 6-1 10-6, Lily O'Fagan beat Abbey Hogg 6-0 6-0, Mercer & Morrow beat Harvey & Hauswirth 6-1 6-4, Kishida & O'Fagan beat Flowerday & Hogg 6-2,6-1.
Marlborough Jigsaw 2 lost to Marlborough Dragons 4: Reilly Quirk beat Peter Rogge 6-1 6-4, Nick Winter lost to Nigel Sowman 6-2 7-5, Logan Croad lost to Josh Watson 7-6 5-7 12-10, Kate Rawcliffe lost to Donna Clark 6-7 6-4 10-7, Winter & Croad lost to Sowman & Watson 3-6 6-3 10-3, Quirk & Rawcliffe beat Rogge & Clark 2-6 7-5 10-4.
Marlborough Bullets 4 beat Rapaura Drylands Two 2: Andrew Forgesson beat Brendon Sutherland 6-2 4-6 10-7, Mitchell Smith beat Owen Dodson 6-2 6-2, Josh Winter beat Ben Burridge 6-1 4-6 15-13, Sarah Maxwell beat Ros Suter by default, Smith & Winter lost to Sutherland & Burridge 6-2 6-1, Forgesson & Maxwell lost to Dodson & Suter 4-6 7-6 (4) 10-6.
Points standings: Marlborough Foxes 50, Rapaura Drylands One 42, Marlborough Stars 38, Rapaura Drylands Two 29, Marlborough Dragons 28, Marlborough Bullets 23, Marlborough Jigsaw 23, Marlborough Rockets 20.
- The Marlborough Express