Notts too strong for Norfolk
Nottinghamshire are heading back to the Premiership after recording their sixth successive victory by beating Norfolk 12-3 at Easton Sports Centre. Norfolk put up a spirited performance but the visitors, fielding several national players, were too hot to handle. Ian Murphy maintained his recent good form by winning his singles in straight sets, followed by a level doubles victory, partnered by Alex Wyett and then teaming up with Katherine Cooper for a hard fought mixed doubles win. The rest of the team, Gillian Cox, Amber Lillingstone, Norma Bowen, and Jon and James Plunkett all battled hard, but their opponents were in a different class.
The second team enjoyed a real cliff-hanger against the Notts third string, narrowly losing by 7 games to 8. The singles were tied with Steve Sharp and Tanya Harrison winning for the home team. Then, the level doubles were also shared with Harrison and Linda Sawyer winning both their games with Michelle Lewin and Sarah Williams and Justin Gerrard and Christian Nielsen taking one game each. So, with the match tied at 6 all, the mixed doubles were to prove decisive. Nielsen and Lewin lost their game, but then Jonathan Cooper and Sarah Williams levelled the match at 7 all with a straight sets win, leaving the outcome of the match in the hands of Gerrard and Sawyer. Playing well, they won the first set 17-14, lost the second 13-15, but then went down 12-15 in the third, leaving Notts to claim an 8-7 victory. But Norfolk were pleased with their hard fought "losing point", which kept them in a mid-table position with two matches to play.
* There were very encouraging entries for the Under 8s & 10s moderates tournaments, with almost 40 youngsters taking part. For many, it was their first taste of competitive badminton and there were some hard fought games, but also plenty of smiles and lots of fun.
The Under 8s only played singles with Ben Sharman the eventual winner of the boys event and Toby Hoare a worthy runner-up. Kathryn Baker won the girls competition with Hope Flower in second place.
Jacob Marshall-Grint and Ella Kearsley won both singles and level doubles at Under 10 level, with Jacob partnered by Olivier Widdowson and Ella teaming up with Rebecca Yallop. In the boys events, Robert Fletcher had to settle for second place in both singles and doubles, partnered by Tim Hughes. Rebecca was runner-up in the girls singles and Kathryn Baker and Elspeth Straffon-Lawrence took second place in the girls doubles.
* The county juniors had a mixed bag of results in the latest round of Shires League matches. Against Lincolnshire, the Under 13s were a little unlucky to lose 13-7, while the Under 15s gained a convincing 15-5 victory. Nearly half of the Under 13s games went to three ends, but the match was lost when Lincs won seven of the eight singles games. Norfolks Ashley Robb was unbeaten. For the Under 15s, the girls won all their singles and level doubles, while the boys shared theirs, giving victory to the Norfolk team. who also picked up three of the four mixed.
The Under 17s match against Suffolk started late to allow some of the team to visit Carrow Road for the Norwich/Ipswich match, but that turned out to be very bad preparation for the Norfolk side who crashed to a 17-3 defeat. Norfolks successes came from Sarah Lewin and Pavitra Chotai in the singles and Stephanie Buttle and Kirsty Spinks in the doubles.
Teams: Under 13s: Holly Bowen, Rebecca Chapman, Serena Verney, Annie Giles, Mark Robinson, Ashley Robb, Andrew Carrier and Joshua Ring.
Under 15s: Charlotte Crosby, Rebecca Heeles, Emma Davies, Stephanie Rowland, Lucas Lefevre, John Carrier, Kurtis Lefevre and Lee Robinson.
Under 17s: Sarah Lewin, Stephanie Buttle, Kirsty Spinks, Pavitra Chotai, James Worthington-Hill, Chris Piff, Ryan Minns, Rohan Chitale and Lee Thomas.