Kingston’s ladies tennis team were not strong enough to defeat UCL in the first round of matches this season.
Despite the wet conditions, matches went ahead with Kingston firsts suffering a 4-1 loss to UCL’s second team. It could have been worse for the girls, but rain abandoned play during the final doubles contest.
In the first match, the two captains faced off in a hard-fought encounter, with UCL’s Georgie Smith and Kingston’s Yasmin Reiterman both impressing early on.
Smith took the advantage when she broke serve in the third game after a tense rally. She took the first set 6-3 and the early momentum allowed her to dominate the second set and power through to a 6-0 victory.
The second match fared no better for Kingston with Minghoui Ke beaten by UCL’s Elizabeth Griskova.
Ke could never get back into the match after a poor start and eventually lost 6-1 6-3. Griskova was commanding throughout and hit eight winners in contrast to Ke’s three.
The action did not stop there as Kingston’s Jessica Schulz took on UCL’s Anika Dutta.
Both players started comfortably, easily holding serve and cancelling out each other’s strong baseline play.
Some great action followed, but two breaks of serve by Dutta allowed her to take the first set 6-3. In the second set a UCL break made it their match to lose and when Dutta produced a powerful overhead winner for another break, she comfortably held serve to take the set and the match 6-3.
However, the ladies captain, Yasmin Reiterman, can take hope from the performance of Emma Thompson who demolished her opponent Amel Kheirat 6-1 6-0.
Thompson played some excellent groundstrokes throughout the match and the consistency of her serve allowed her to play quick free-flowing tennis. Kheirat on the other hand was let down by her erratic serve producing 10 double faults.
In the first doubles match, UCL skipper Georgie Smith and Elizabeth Griskova beat Janelle Fivecoat and Rebecca Lee 6-3 6-2.
The second match started well for the hosts, but then a recurrence of the earlier rain ended the tie while Kingston was on top.
Even in defeat Kingston’s captain was pleased with her players’ performance.
She said: “I am proud of my team today, this is the first proper match that they have played and it can only get better from here. We are going to be ready for Varsity in March.”
After her victory, UCL captain Georgie Smith said: “I think I played quite well. I was playing it safe, as I was going for consistency. I was really happy with the team’s performance.”
Kingston hopes to fair better when they face UCL in the cup later on in the year.
Double Faults: 7
Unforced errors: 34
Double Faults: 15
Unforced errors: 50