Who won 18 out of 18 matches? (clue: it’s not Seb Puga)
Who are the Killer Pairs from the Summer of 2019?
Full House: which players completed the full 18 matches?
Zero Concessions: Our Top Captains
So Dyke won the 2019 Parks League. Well done to that well led (Sebastian Puga) and well supported (Claire Anderson and Cy Pollard) unit. You were the best.
But the toppermost position is just one small detail of a long and busy summer of Parks League tennis in Brighton & Hove. Thanks to the labours of Jon Lightbody, of BHPLTA and Park Avenue, we have a treasure trove of player data to share, the result of many long nights Jon spent inputting match scores into his very own Magic Stat Machine.
What started as a team game has been carefully broken down by our Jon into cold hard player-by-player data for your perusal. Check out the Division 1 most wins table below, topped by Puga and Queens’ Katie Moorman. You can read more about Katie’s tennis journey here. With four Dyke players inside the top seven – all hail Jo Marlow, Rob Bromley, Emily London and Seb – it’s not hard to see how Dyke won the title.
Only one player had a 100 per cent winning record in Div 1. Step forward Brett McDonald of Park Avenue, who has the enviable record of played four, won four. Brett, we don’t know if your captain wants to kiss you or throttle you.
While Seb is our undoubted 2019 Most Valuable Player, his single loss in doubles (6-2, 6-4 to the Park Avenue pair of MacDonald and Max Laing) means he was NOT the winningest player in the Parks League last season. Step forward Daniel Curtis of Hove C who illuminated the summer with a perfect record: played 18, won 18. Daniel was the rock on which Hove built their Div 2 title victory, sharing the credit with his various partners – William Defabre, Lucy Chadburn, Pam Martin, and Jessica Pither – who either clung to his coat-tails or pushed him across the line, depending on who you ask.
Talking of 100 per cent records, Jon has uncovered all the ‘perfect’ scores in the four divisions. For the sake of fairness we are going to skip over the hit’n run one-match bandits (where do you find them Hove?) and concentrate on those who played a minimum of 10 full matches. It’s quite a list:
(There are, or course, quite a few players with 100 per cent records in the, er, wrong direction, but moving swiftly on…)
In the Premier League, only a tiny number of players play every match of an entire season, but they tend to be the rock-solid, go-to players every manager prays for (Virgil Van Dyke, David De Gea). So credit to our 2019 Parks League performers with 100 per cent attendance records, you absolute beauties. It’s a small but exclusive club:
Charlie Brown, Queens, D1, 18 matches
Phillipe Biddulph, Blakers D2, 18 matches
Daniel Curtis, Hove D3, 18 matches
Seb Puga, Dyke, D1, 18 matches
Jenny Matthews, Saltdean, 18 matches
As well as individual wins, we do of course recognise that it’s a team game. Jon has compiled some excellent pairs scores results – but it takes a while to go through them all, so we’ve done it for you. In 2018, Queens won the Div 1 title on the back of a women’s pairing – Wendy Powell & Brenda Maguire – who completed a perfect 18/18, 100 per cent season. No doubles pair achieved that in 2019, but a couple came close. Here are the 2019 top performers:
Jeff Taylor & Fiona Lishman, Park Avenue
Wendy Powell & Brenda Maguire, Queens
Andy Russell & Yvette Seaton, Dyke A
Siobhan McLoughlin & Mirander Lowe, Dyke C & D
Jacob Chadwick & Katie Moorman, Queens
Angela Bruce & Sonali Fernando, Dyke D & E
Seb Puga & Jo Marlow, Dyke
Edward Kear & Spencer Phillips, Stanford A
Eric Dugard & Sandra Dugard, Hove D & E
Conceded matches are, let’s face it, not unheard of when it comes to Parks League fixtures. As team captains will tell you, it can be incredibly tough delivering four men and four women to an agreed destination every week, April to August. Messages are missed. Excuses are made. Words are said. And, worst of all, some people actually think it’s okay to take holiday during the tennis season, for shame. So let’s put a positive spin on this, and celebrate the 2019 Parks League captains who soldiered through last summer without a single concession. O Captain! My Captain! You are the master of communication and the dark arts of persuasion.
Dyke – Seb Puga
Dyke C – Phil Brady
Dyke D – Phil Brady
Dyke E – Laurence Poulton
Hove – Steve Milonas
Hove B – Jason Pither
Hove C – John Bell
Hove D – Sue Sinclair
Hove E – Kevin Bromley
King Alfred – Andy Knights
Queens – Jacob Chadwick
Queens D – Barbara Michael
Saltdean – Andy Mullins
Saltdean B – Steve Bye
Respect to Hove who put out six teams and came up with just one single concession between them. I’m sure it was plain sailing, right?
That’s all for now. More gold digging in 2020.
- Conrad Brunner