XAVIER Saints have taken out the Barossa & Gawler Combined Tennis Association division one premiership in fine style, comfortably accounting for Kapunda 10-92 to 6-64, on Saturday, at Essex Park.
Kapunda, without spearhead Tom Christley, started well with Mick and David Matters taking a solid top doubles win against Jayden Ruediger and David Weekly, but Xavier dominated the remaining opening doubles sets to take a three-sets-to-one lead.
Quick-fire singles wins to Weekly, Roger Buckby and Indi-Arna Morris soon saw Xavier’s lead blow out to six sets to one.
However, a magnificent tie-break victory to Kapunda’s Mick Matters over Ruediger, followed by singles wins to Karen Daniel and Sarah Johnson, pulled the deficit back to two sets, giving Kapunda hope with six sets remaining.
However, straightforward singles victories to Mel Leeflang and Damian McGee gave Xavier an eight-sets-to-four-lead, with a decisive games advantage, to put the win out of reach for the brave, but sadly, undermanned Kapunda.
The reverse doubles were split two apiece and the celebrations began for the deserving Saints, who were the form team of the competition since the Christmas break.
Following the match, in a blow to tennis in the Gawler and Barossa region, Kapunda legend David Matters announced his retirement from competitive tennis.
Matters has had an exceptional career, and rival teams will miss the formidable challenge of facing him on the doubles court.
The association would like to congratulate Matters on his career, and wish him well for his retirement.
Meanwhile, Willaston overcame fierce rival Lyndoch 10-88 to 6-70 to claim the division two premiership.
As has been the case throughout the season, Lyndoch’s men were dominant in the opening doubles sets, as were the Willaston ladies, with the match teetering at two sets apiece following the opening stanza.
Willaston’s Angela Edwards and Tanya Pettrey claimed solid singles wins, with exceptional serving a highlight of their games.
Christina Lim served Julie Carmody a bagel, and Nicole Stojko overcame Di Lane to give Willaston a handy six-sets-to-two lead.
However, Lyndoch men Andrew Lane, Ryan Ogden and Tyson Liebelt clawed back three sets, with powerful singles wins, to all but erase the deficit.
The pivotal match came in the men’s fourth singles, with Willaston’s Carl Nys bucking the trend and taking a gutsy 6-3 win over Gary Sumpton to give the minor premiers a seven-sets-to-five lead heading into the reverse doubles sets.
Lucas Baker and Darren Pettrey took an eighth win for Willaston, while Tanya Pettrey and Jodie Chester put the victory out of reach for Lyndoch, sealing the premiership.
Lastly, Roseworthy took out the division three premiership with a win over Lyndoch.
Roseworthy was the class of the field for the entire season, going through undefeated in both the minor and major round.