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David Lloyd West End Masters and Ladies Finals

(Me) Jason Grinton (winner) & John Turner (r-up)

Masters – Jason Grinton played his second final of the season as he took on John Turner (J.T.) in the DLWE Masters final on Wednesday and this time he had the added pressure of being the favourite.

It all started well for Jason and he was in charge of the 1stgame and always ahead. John kept himself in contention, but at 9-8 Jason turned the screw and won the next 6 points without reply to take the 1st game 15-8.

(To see more photos click here)

In-between the games Jason looked a bit too casual for my liking and I sensed a change in fortune if he wasn’t able to get his match head back on. However maybe I was wrong about this as he went into a 6-1 lead with some hard-hitting, good length; but equally maybe I was right as J.T. fought his way back to 11-8. John was playing some of his trademark drops from the serve and the odd cross court drop to create havoc in Jason’s game plan. Now it was really interesting as Jason tried to get himself back in contention at 10-11, but the momentum shifted again and J.T. came up with a couple of drops and a couple of good lengths and the 2nd game was landed; hook, line and sinker!

The next game went one way then the other with J.T. getting the early lead and Jason playing catch-up, but he did catch up and then went on a terrific run of 7 points without reply to take a 12-7 lead. John fought back again to 12-14 with some great determination and tricky shot making, but it wasn’t enough as Jason managed to just secure the 3rd 15-12.

So would John be able to get back into the match or would Jason take the 4th game and the 2011 Masters title? Well once again it was neck and neck all the way to 10-10 with each man getting short runs of points, but neither being dominant. However just then it was Jason who took four of the next five points to put himself into a 14-11 lead. Surely too much for John to come back from, but come back he did and at 14-13 it looked like it was going all the way. Unfortunately (for the crowd) Jason found the winning point and he took the game 15-13 and the match 3-1.

So Jason Grinton lifted the 2010/11 DLWE Masters Title

The Masters Plate Final went on straight after and the smart money was definitely on David as the bookies had stopped taking bets on this. David Mazzucco v David Wilson was the line up and this turned out to be a cracker of a match. The 1st game saw David W make the early running to win 15-11, but David M (Mazz) soon equalled things up by winning the second convincingly 15-8. The 3rd was as close as it could have been with Mazz taking it 17-16 and establishing a 2-1 lead.

Both men were playing well and the 4th went back and forward up to 10-10, but it was David W who made a few less errors at this point and he took the game 15-12 to even things up at 2 games all. And so to the 5th! The handshake was offered and graciously accepted as the crowd settled down for the climax to the match and this time David W took the game by the scruff of the neck as the Mazz was looking like he’d already run a 10K in 100% humidity! Dave W took a good early lead and at 8-4 looked like he was going to romp home. However David Mazz staged a comeback to get to 8-10, but this must have taken too big an effort as the final points were all Dave W’s; as he finished The Mazz off with some deft drops to secure the Plate victory 3-2.

The Ladies Tournament was also going on at the same time and involved a six player round-robin to see who would be crowned DLWE Ladies Champion for 2011. Sara, Wendy, Kerry, Emily, JJ and Glynis were the competitors and it was great to see such a good turn out and standard. As the matches finished up it was becoming clear that Wendy McDougal, Kerry Kasem and Sara McDonald would probably be the top three places and when Wendy beat Kerry in the penultimate match it was down to Wendy v Sara to play the final round-robin tie. Both players had the same amount of points at that stage so this match also turned out to be the final (great organising I’d say!) and it was Sara who won a hard fought final match to take her first DLWE Ladies title.

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