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The Southend and District Badminton Association league season began with two very tight matches in the mixed divisions.
The first came between Westcliff Thirds and Hawkwell in the Mixed Second Division where six of the nine rubbers went to three games.
John Hall and Barbara Childs and Mike Weingarten and Sandy Woolacott both secured braces for Westcliff with Phil Crabtree and Holly Gillard winning the other rubber for a 5-4 victory. Andrew Strutt and Sophie Pearson and Matt Smyth and Caroline Trace won two rubbers each for the away side.
In the Mixed Premier, Fitzwimarc Seconds edged past B&BP 5-4 with again, six of the nine rubbers going to three. Pam Lee and Ryan Pinnock picked up a hat-trick and were supported by two victories from Kera Lewis and Harris Foster-Carter. Emma and Dan Potter bagged a double for the away side with Tamsin Collinge and Adam Cooper and Karen Wallaker and Paul Hyde winning one each.
Defending Ladies Premier champions Leighway kicked off the new season with a comprehensive 6-0 victory over newly promoted Phoenix Flames. Lynne Swann, June Hammond, Viv Gillard and Mia Petchey all won three perfect rubbers each. Tracey Haylett and Vikki Walker did best for the Flames.
Elsewhere in the division, Eastwood began the season with a 5-1 victory away at Chelmsford Casuals. Emma Harris and Clare Roberts both won three rubbers each without dropping a game to get the visitors off to a winning start. Lesley Pallet and Susie Olorenshaw helped pick up the point for the home side.
In the Ladies First Division, Fitzwimarc began their season with a 6-0 away win over B&BP. Alicia Chu, Jenny Chu, Mandy Holland and Mair Dew made up the winning team for Fitz. Emma Potter and Tamsin Collinge came closest to grabbing a point for the home side.
Chase returned to the Southend leagues with a 7-2 triumph on the road at Eastwood in the Men’s First division. Andrew Chen-Porter and Jack Greenshield and Jinu Jacob and Vini Kunnath both secured hat-tricks for Chase with the former not losing a game. John Kindred and Graham Goodale and Paul Barber and Adrian Watling won a rubber each for Eastwood.
In the Men’s Second Division, Fitzwimarc Thirds started their campaign with a 6-3 victory over Hawkwell. Adam Peters and Craig Walsingham won all three rubbers with John Hobbs-Hurrell and James Williams picking up two wins and one for Mike Vardy and Robert Cornish. Russell Dobson and Matt Smyth grabbed two wins and Mike Smyth and Keith Wood got the other point for the Hawks.
Finally, Fitzwimarc Thirds and Eastwood Seconds shared the spoils in their opening Masters First division match. Emma Dixon, Jane Moring and Mike Vardy all won two rubbers each for Fitz. Martin Rainbow secured a hat-trick of wins for the visitors as five of the six rubbers went to three games.