St Michael trashes St Philip in road tennis

There wasn’t any hope for St Philip on the road tennis court this Yuletide season.

Junior “Ju Ju” Collymore brought the crowd at Silver Hill to its feet last night with a superb showing, on his way to carrying St Michael past St Philip and through to the ‘B’ class semifinals of the National Sports Council’s Inter-Parish road tennis competition.

It was another good night for St Michael, as their veterans also advanced to the semis with a dominant victory over St Philip.

Collymore stole the spotlight though, with his impressive defensive play against Dwayne Hope, to rescue the defending champions from elimination.

After watching his partner Terry Smith go down to St Philip’s Ryan Hall 22-20, 16-21, 17-21, Collymore needed a straight sets victory to ensure his team through.

The slimly built player wasted no time in stamping his dominance on the night’s proceedings, quickly jumping out to an 8-2 lead over a tentative looking Hope.

Collymore wowed the appreciative crowd on hand with his consistency and ability to retrieve seemingly impossible shots, which forced his opponent into unforced errors.

 He rattled off the next seven points as the lead ballooned to 13 (15-2), before Hope finally won a point to end the run.

A change of balls didn’t help to change Hope’s fortunes either, as Collymore maintained his stranglehold on the contest, marching to 18-3 before eventually closing out the set.

An attacking Hope started out much more positively in the second set, using every available opportunity to step around his backhand and play his forehand instead.

It helped him to keep the game close at 5-5 and 9-9, before two unforced errors by Collymore gave Hope an 11-9 lead.

But stunningly, just as in the opening set, Collymore went on a run, winning the next nine points, sometimes in spectacular fashion.

On one occasion, the pair rallied 21 balls, which featured several breathtaking defensive returns by Collymore, who eventually won the point by executing a stylish forehand crosscourt winner.

With the score at 19-13, he earned a round of applause, and a hug from one of his supporters,  Antoine “Lil Man” Daniel, after somehow managing to return six consecutive slams from Hope, before executing another forehand winner.

Earlier St Michael’s veterans’ pair of Andrew “Cripple” Holder and Jeffrey “Bing Crosby” Layne were easy winners over Richard Pinder and Rudy “National” Gill respectively.

Holder crushed Pinder 21-5, 21-14, while Layne defeated Gill 21-17 in the first set to give them an unassailable points total, with both players opting not to play the remaining matches.

St Thomas’ Kyle King advanced to the semifinals of the Under-21 competition by defeating St Philip’s Akeem Price, 21-17, 20-22, 21-11.

St Thomas' Ricky Hoyte won his veteran's match against St. John's Anthony Edwards.(FP)
St Thomas’ Ricky Hoyte won his veteran’s match against St. John’s Anthony Edwards.(FP)

In a rescheduled match, Ricky “Body Doc” Hoyte ensure St Thomas remained in the competition by dismissing St John’s Anthony “Noss” Edwards 21-11, 21-16 in their veterans clash.

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