In the second round of the Challenge Cup the match between Holywell A (+5) and Hawarden (+7) was, as the handicaps suggest, a close encounter ending in a 4-4 draw, with Holywell progressing in the competition by just seven points. Undefeated Tonicha Gibson was player of the match for Hawarden and together with Kate Falk they outplayed Becky Saunders and Sue Price to win by 21/14, 21/20.
Again a close result occurred when Llanferres A (-8) and Denbigh A (-7) clashed at Ruthin, ending in another 4-4 draw with Llanferres A going through to the next round by the same margin of seven points. Good handicapping by the Committee! Jane Givelin and Sara Jenkins played aggressive badminton to outgun Katie Owen and Meinir Hughes by 21/11, 21/13.
Meanwhile in Division 1 of the North East Wales Badminton League, a rampant Flint Phoenix A showed no mercy towards visitors Llanferres A winning convincingly 7-1. At second men’s David Clough and Duncan Church came closest to winning on behalf of Llanferres but Andy Gibbons and David Carnelly played sound doubles tactics and with less unforced errors eventually took their match by 21/13, 22/20.
Llangollen are finding life in the top tier difficult and their long journey to Deeside gave them little comfort when they went down 6-2. Kim Yeap was player of the match for Llangollen and playing at second men’s with Dave Edwards they battled hard, but could not overcome the scintillating play of Luke McLaughlin and Gareth Burroughs who won a close contest 21/18, 18/2, 23/21.
Division 2 champions in waiting, Eros, had too much firepower for Holywell A, crushing them 8-0. Stuart Mears starred for Eros and together with Sheila Palmer at second mixed, paraded their skills to overcome Sue Price and Eryl Hooson winning 21/8, 21/11.
In what proved to be a tightly fought fixture, Connah’s Quay eased their way to a 5-3 home win over Llanferres B. In the match of the evening, at first men’s, youth prevailed over experience when Junior Welsh International Mike Pritchard along with Amogh Patil outlasted Andy Swash and Peter Williams in a three game thriller to win by 19/21, 21/17, 21/4.
Mold C’s push for promotion from Division 3 was helped when they proved too strong for visitors Holywell B running out 6-2 winners. At first ladies, Holywell’s Elsie Gregory and Linda Roberts showed how ladies doubles should be played when they were tactically too astute their opponents Helena Warman and Paulina Matsko, going on to win 21/15, 21/17.
Denbigh B recorded a fine win when they beat Llanferres C 5-3. For Denbigh both ladies doubles partnerships won their events with the partnership of Helen Gardner and Caroline Roberts, playing at second, particularly outstanding. In their match against Moira Bonar and Pauline Brooke-Rankin, they played delicious touches at the net and combined with heavy smashing went on to triumph by 21/12, 21/13.