Carterton have the early edge in the Wairarapa Tennis Regional One Championship after beating an understrength Martinborough 5–4 in Saturday’s first round.
Defending Gawith Shield champions Martinborough were missing the experienced Wilkie brothers Chris and Ed, and Carterton took advantage, winning four of the six singles matches and one of the three doubles to clinch seven first-round points – one point for each match plus two pints for winning the tie.
Carterton’s wins came at the top of the men’s order, where William Day got the better of Shane Colton 6–3 6–3. At number three, Troy Crout defeated Mike Jones 6–0 6–4, and Zachary Chang recovered from a set down to beat Quintin Larkin 2–6 7–5 6–2 in the battle of the men’s number fours, while Olivia Orsborn picked up a valuable point with a tough 6-1 4–6 6–2 win over Katherine Jacobs.
Veteran Marco de Groot lost the first set to Johnty Tatham before fighting back to win 4–6 6–3 6–4, and Gabriella Nicholson despatched Lucy Orsborn for Martinborough’s only singles victories.
Andi Steinemann and Dave Heard secured the fifth win for Carterton with a 6–4 6–1 defeat of Jones and Larkin in the second of the men’s doubles.
De Groot and Colton, with a 7–5 6–2 victory over Day and Tatham, and the women’s pairing of Nicholson and Jacobs, who defeated the Orsborn sisters 6-1 6-3, ensure that Carterton would take away four points.
Opaki will host Carterton in the second round of the championship on Saturday.