Josh Sapwell played in the clay court 12 and under finals at the end of April. The top 16 boys in the country played at Queenswood School, Herts, in a knockout format. Josh (shown right, top) was the number two seed and won all of his matches in straight

Josh Sapwell played in the clay court 12 and under finals at the end of April.

The top 16 boys in the country played at Queenswood School, Herts, in a knockout format.

Josh (shown right, top) was the number two seed and won all of his matches in straight sets to meet third seed Marc Huttman in the final.

Josh played some great tennis in the final and his mental strength and solid serving helped him to overwhelm his opponent 6-1 6-0 and take the title.

Looking for the double, Josh competed in the National Clay Court Main Draw (grade one) over half term.

Seeded number two, he was on track for this unique double by reaching the final, but unfortunately ended up losing to top seed Peter Ashley.

With Josh currently at number two in the country, he has been selected for the GB team to play a friendly against Poland.

In addition he has also been selected for the Nations Cup and Summer Cup, which are the two most prestigious team events in Europe at junior level.

Also over half term, Bea Kight (shown right) played in the Harpenden Open (grade three).

Seeded eighth, she got to the semi-finals where she unfortunately lost out to Marie Louise-Brown who was the number one seed.

Bea partnered Emily Rodbourne and together they won the 14 and under doubles tournament. Bea is now travelling to the Czech Republic for a training block on red clay.

Toby Huffer will also be going abroad this month to Croatia for an international 10 and under event. This is his first tournament abroad and will offer him invaluable experience.

Harry Turner played in the Riverside One Day LTA grade five/six tournament in May. He beat six opponents on the way to winning the tournament. Samuel Tomlinson also from LSTC came a creditable fourth.

Over half term, Harry also competed in the Harpenden Junior Open Tournament grade three. He was the sole LSTC representative in the under-10s and despite a valiant fight, he ended up losing to Charles Broom (county number one) in the semi-final (4-0, 4-1) but in the knowledge it did go to deuce in most sets.

* For the minis, the teams have continued their good run of form since Easter, with notable individual performances too.

In the red team Grand Prix held monthly at Odyssey, Letchworth are still unbeaten with three months to go!

In the individual event, Joanna Garland, Daniel Martin and David Latter are doing well. Daniel and James Smith also represented Herts in a team event against five other East Region Counties in May. Herts came third in this event.

At orange level in the Herts team league, Letchworth have stormed through their four matches with the loss of only one rubber.

They have qualified for the finals at Queenswood on Sunday, June 15, beating teams from Legends, Royston, Buntingford and Odyssey.

Team members include Danielle Latter, Kate Newby, Ed Wilsher, Shimmy Osindero and Sean Blyth.

Two players, Danielle and David Stevenson, played for Herts in the East Region event held over the bank holiday weekend and won their matches helping Herts to win the whole event (pictured).

The green players have had closer matches in their league but have also successfully qualified for the finals at Queenswood by beating teams from Legends, Odyssey, Royston and Sawbridgeworth.

Team members include Alice Turner, Daniela Fort, Coralie Spearman, Robert Lankester, Harry Turner, Joe Riant, Sam Tomlinson and Richard Poulter.

Many of these players have been competing successfully in the green Grand Prix and race events held monthly over the county.

* Letchworth girls' under-14 team and boys' under-12 team have progressed to the regional play-off stage of this year's National Junior Club League.

The under-14s next play Halton Club from Bucks later this month, while the under-12s are scheduled to take on Hackney Tennis Club this weekend.

The Letchworth teams are the only team from Herts outside of Gosling and Batchwood high performance centres to qualify for the regional play-off stage.

Gosling and Batchwood, whose coaching programmes are subsidised massively by the LTA, were allowed to bend the rules in this year's event and pool all their junior players and recruit other junior players who train elsewhere.

Combined Gosling/Batchwood proved too strong for all other competing Herts clubs with the exception of Letchworth.

Other Letchworth junior club teams, namely the girls' 10U and 12U teams and the boys' 14U and 16U teams, finished as runners-up in their county divisions in this competition.


You can make a racket at Letchworth

Letchworth Tennis and Sports Club will be hosting the Letchworth Racketlon Open over the weekend of June 21-22.

Racketlon is a fast-growing sport that combines table tennis, squash, badminton and tennis. More information on the sport can be found at or

The Letchworth event is part of the British Racketlon Tour 2008.

There will be events for experienced and novice players and all are welcome. There are also events for junior and veteran players.

For an entry form, call John Garland at the club on 01462 675444.

* Letchworth Ladies National Club League first team had a resounding 6-0 victory in their last match of the season.

This makes them undefeated this season, an excellent result given tough competition from Cumberland in Hampstead and Newmarket.

Both these matches were won on closely fought penalty shoot-outs.

This gains them promotion to National Division One which is the top division.

Team members are Louise Penny, Maddy Walker, Janine Stanton, Lynn Higginson-Carter, Catherine Jones, Wendy Job, Anoushka Demetriou, Sophie Watts, Anneka Watts and team captain Natasha Pitman.

The ladies' over-40s team are continuing their successful campaign in the National Vets Competition.

So far they have won two rounds with wins over Harpenden and Chandos. A win in the next round will see them through to the quarter-finals.

Team members are Jane Bowen, Wendy Cottenden, Maddy Walker, Yvonne Latter and Wendy Job.

The men's first team, newly promoted to National Division Two this season, has so far won its first four matches against teams from Essex, Bucks and North London.

This Sunday, the team plays the other unbeaten team in its group, Muswell Hill from North London, in what should be the match which decides the group winner.

The team has been led by Marc Beckles and Dominic Ross-Hurst, currently ranked numbers 48 and 54 nationally.

Club coach James Thomas and Mark O'Keefe make up the team's quartet. Richard Staff and Neil Blake have also represented the team.

* The club's men's over-35 team pulled off a remarkable victory against Ealing in this year's National Inter-Club Competition.

The match finished at two-all, with both teams finishing on the same number of sets and games won.

Competition rules revealed that Letchworth won the match because its first pair had beaten Ealing's first pair.

The Letchworth team, represented on this occasion by Carl Jackson, John Garland, John Bennet and Dave Withers, is now through to the last 16.


Sun shines for croquet

Eleven newcomers joined the croquet section after the recent successful six-week coaching course.

Several bravely entered the 'Start the Summer' golf croquet fun doubles tournament in May, and acquitted themselves extremely well.

Newcomer Tony Cooper topped the scoreboard with 22 hoops, but, with his finals partner David Russell, was beaten in the final game by John Alabaster and David Tutt.

The next open tournament will be the Strawberry Tea a week on Sunday (June 15).

The club was the only one that sent three members to the Inter-Counties Championships and helped to win promotion to Division One.


Players are welcome for badminton club nights

Norton and Baldock Badminton Club (NBBC) were recently featured in the Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation publication Insight.

With the Baldock club dating back to the 1970s, the merger took place due to falling numbers prior to relocation to LSTC in 2006.

Since this move the club not only benefits from excellent courts, a viewing balcony and changing facilities, but also from a bar area to maintain a sociable aspect to the club.

Although the members of the club enjoy its sociable aspect, it is still competitive with NBBC the current holders of the Letchworth League's Fletcher Cup, having won it for the last two consecutive years.

A healthy membership base means that two teams are entered in the Letchworth and District Badminton League, and two in the Stevenage equivalent.

With new club standard players always welcome, club nights are on a Tuesday from 8-10pm, with a session fee of £3.

For more information, call Simon Bygrave on 01462 684804. The club operates a 'first week free' policy for any interested players.