Team slumps to disastrous defeat
Following a strong finish to the first half of the season the team returned to action hosting Gosling 3 with very high hopes of pushing on towards promotion, but at the end of the evening the team were left demoralised and defeated.
The evening started badly and simply got worse as Natalie spurned an early lead to lose form dramatically going down 3-0 to a player she would ordinarily expect to beat in the shape of Chris Gibby. Meanwhile worse was evolving on the other court as the usually reliable no 1 string, Sean Davies, toiled with injury losing to Mike Byrne in 5. It was an uphill battle from there, but rather than improve things got progressively worse as no3 string Mat McHugh, who had beaten Byrne in the return fixture, inexplicably lost to Jon Noonan. Antony Di Blasio played as well as he could, but was simply blown away at 4 by David Miller.
It was left to no2 string Amir Jafri to salvage some pride winning in 4 against ex LDS stalwart Scot Adam.
A bad night for the side, which all but extinguishes their promotion hopes.
LDS turn in battling performance against all the odds.
It's ironic how the mettle of a team is discovered following a setback and so it was that LDS travelled to Bishops Stortford, the second furthest outpost in the Herts league with a patched up team of 4, rather than 5. The players who did turn out however did the club proud in a battling defeat.
With players away in New York, Manchester and Peterborough, non-playing team Captain Paul Main (out with a long term injury) was initially prepared to forfeit the tie in the latest round of matches, but youngster Natalie Main's insistence that she would play at 1, if needed, in order to fulfil the fixture meant he put the call out to the regular membership, to which 3 others responded in the affirmative allowing the fixture to go ahead.
Dan Johnson, made his debut at 3rd and acquitted himself admirably going down 3-0 to the very experienced Josh O'Donovan. By his own admission it was a steep learning curve. Meanwhile, on the show court Natalie put up arguably the performance of the season at second string as she raced to a 2-0 lead against Alex Pleasance. Sean Davies, only beat him 3-1 earlier in the season. Sadly for the youngster she ran out of steam a bit and that small drop off allowed Pleasance back into the match and ultimately prevail 3-2.
Next up another debutante in the shape of Adam Zia at 4. He faced youngster Will Crocker, who Nat had beaten in the return fixture. Zia battled hard and took the third, but Crocker's better technique overcame the phenomenal retrieving of Zia to win 3-1. It was left to John Stevens to take on first string Tom Trueman and whilst he gave the host player a scare in the second, never really looked like causing an upset.
Johnson and Zia will be making more appearances before the end of the season on the back of these showings that's for sure.