NEW MILTON F ARE THROUGH TO T&D CUP FINAL!
Fresh on the heels of winning the Division 4 title in the Bournemouth & District league, the New Milton F team (Ian Linney, Steve Cheesman & Mike Roberts) had a right royal battle on their hands in a nail-biting semi-final of the Annual Times & Directory Handicap Cup against the runaway winners of Division 5, Winton YMCA D (Rob Ryan, Matt Ryan & Keith Law). The full squad of 5 players are pictured below: l-r Malcolm Nash (Captain), Ian Linney, Sylvia Smith, Mike Roberts & Steve Cheesman.
All Milton’s players gave starts to the Winton players reflecting the difference in the divisions. Milton went 2-0 ahead as Linney beat Rob Ryan (+4), and Cheesman got the better of Rob’s son Matt (+5). Winton’s Lamb benefited from a +7 start and disposed of Roberts in two sets as did Rob Ryan to Cheesman to level off the tie at 2-2. Linney then lost to Lamb (+5) in two sets but Roberts levelled things off at 3-3 by beating Matt Ryan (+5). Lamb (+7) got his hat-trick by getting the better of Cheesman in two sets, leaving Roberts needing to beat Rob Ryan to keep Milton in the cup. Roberts kept his nerve to beat Ryan senior (+7) 21-18, 16-21, 21-18 to restore parity at 4-4 to hand the poisoned chalice back to team mate Linney for the decider. Linney made short work of Matt Ryan (+2) in the first set , beating him 21-11, but young Ryan fought back well to take the second 21-15 to set up a nerve-jangling finale for both sides. It was nip and tuck throughout the set, but Ryan was 11-9 up at the changeover to give Winton hope. However, Linney played intelligently, largely reserving his forehand hit for “bankers”, and he didn’t look back after 12-12 to beat the plucky youngster 21-16. Milton will play runaway Div 2 leaders Bournemouth Sports F in the Cup Final.
Milton’s two teams left in the “Plate” did well to book their places in the semi-finals. The G team (Les Smith, Eddie Tompkins & Graham Underwood) who normally ply their trade in Div 4, saw off Div 1 high-flyers Ringwood A 5-0 down at Mudeford Wood on the same night as their F team’s cup victory.
The Premier’s B team (Shaun Newcomb, John Hook & John Millward) travelled away to Chapel Gate to face Div 4’s second-placed Bournemouth Sports K and came way with a 5-1 win. The B and G teams have been drawn against each other in the semi-finals so Milton are guaranteed a place in the “Plate” Final as well as the “Cup” Final.