The opening matches of the Southend and District Badminton Association have taken place over the first few weeks in October, and reigning Masters Premier champions Phoenix Flames kicked off their title defence with a 5-1 victory over their second team. Tim Baskett and Peter Lewin both bagged hat-tricks for the Flames first team, but they were pushed to a deciding game in four of the six rubbers. Sara Thompson and Trudi Clark helped Phoenix Seconds to their point.
In the division below, SLH Rayleigh kicked off their first ever Masters campaign with a 4-2 win over Phoenix Flames Thirds. Jan Watt notched all three of her rubbers and was backed up by braces from Mike Smith and Colin Campbell. Jill Beaver won the two rubbers for the Flames.
Last season’s Mixed Premier title winners Westcliff started their season with a 9-0 triumph over newly promoted Phoenix Flames Seconds. Adam Sibley and Clare Roberts, Lee Scott and Jade Timms and Isaac and Philippa Pearson all secured a perfect three rubbers. Danny Peach and Sara Thompson came closest to getting a point for Phoenix.
In the division below, SLH Rayleigh beat Phoenix Flames Thirds 6-3. Jan Watt and Peter Hall and Caroline Fletcher and Joe Garnett both picked up hat-tricks for the visitors. Humaid Ghori and Corinne Telling, Jack Baskett and Kana Hazlewood and Colin Campbell and Jo Howard-Simpson all won one rubber each for the home side.
The newly formed Combination League started with a match in the First division between Phoenix Flames Seconds and Hawkwell, with the latter running out 4-2 winners. Keith Wood picked up all three of his rubbers for the Hawks while Heidi Paine and Yasmin Cracknell won two each to help them to victory. Greg Roffey helped the Flames secure their two points.
Finally, Phoenix Flames were beaten 6-3 by Riverside in their first match since promotion to the Men’s Premier. Raff Pratheek Badrinath and Tom Grafton won all three of their rubbers and were supported by a brace from Raj Mehta and Sri Ramasubramonian and one rubber from Alan Gibbens and Rob Clark. Ben Bradford and Danny Peach bagged a brace for the Flames with the other rubber coming from Alex Cheung and Jay Clark.
Player of the Week – Jan Watt
Team of the Week – SLH Rayleigh (Masters)