John-Paul Moberly and Tobi Savage won the English National GC Doubles Championship
Nine pairs entered this level-play event, played on 3 & 4 September for The Ranelagh Cup and held at The Hurlingham Club.
After an all-play-all block, the best-of-three knockout was contested by: John-Paul Moberly and Tobi Savage (7 wins) versus Sue Lightbody & Lionel Tibble (who beat Andrew Dymond & Jayne Stevens, both on 4 wins); and Chris Sheen & Dick Strover (7 wins, lost to Moberly and Savage) versus Pierre Beaudry & Guy Scurfield (6 wins). Moberly & Savage were taken to a third game, winning a long and tight contest 7-1, 6-7, 7-4. Sheen & Strover continued their impressive form winning 7-6, 7-6.
The final looked to be going comfortably Moberly and Savage's way when they won the first game 7-3, but veterans Sheen & Strover came back strongly taking a 3-1 lead. There followed a titanic struggle for hoop 5 with many long clearances from all players, Sheen and Strover matching their much younger opponents.
Eventually, youth prevalied; the scores were evened at 3-3 and it continued to be very closely fought all the way to the 13th. Moberly's reliable clearances and effective hoop-running balanced Savage's brilliance but occasional misses. Savage had the last laugh with an easy 13th hoop run after their opponents despairing final clearance attempts. Congratulations to both pairs for an absorbing final.
The Ranelagh Cup was presented to Moberly and Savage by John Bowcott, Chairman of the GC Tournament Committee. The Block was played in mostly grey, sometimes wet conditions. Thankfully it was dry for the Knock-out.
All complimented the Club on its excellent lawns and its members on their hospitality.