AFTER moving away from the relegation zone, Hexham Squash Club’s first team have consolidated their mid-table position in Northumbria Division Two.

A closely contested defeat away to Jarrow-based Primrose II was followed up by a strong winning performance away to Concordia (Cramlington).

The Primrose match included some tight games, with Damon Watts just pipping his opponent Mike Paul, and Jeremy Phillipson just going down to Steve Dodds. Tom Ewen, returning for the second half of the season, scored a resounding 3-0 win however this didn’t prove to be enough with Primrose taking the match 3-2.

Hexham put in a solid performance at Concordia where all the matches were close affairs. Andrew Wilkinson, Ewen and Watts all came through successfully in hard fought 3-2 victories. Captain Paul Satow, at number one, was just pipped 3-2 by Tony Hedley, and Phillipson continued his good form winning 3-1 and taking the match 4-1.

Hexham’s second team continued their good form in the second half of the season with a string of wins against Tynemouth V, Northern V, and the Gosforth-based Northern Ladies, to climb to fourth in Division Four.

The home match against Tynemouth saw comfortable wins for David Edwardson and Adrian Alderton. Duncan Hunter came through against Nick Thornton in a tight 3-2 match, while Kristen MacKluskie was just pipped by the stylish Fiona MacFarlane.

Another 3-2 home victory was achieved against Northern Ladies with straightforward wins for Hunter and Alderton. The remaining matches were all close with Guy Jepson having an epic battle with Helen Dowson, just succeeding 3-2.

David Edwardson went down to the improving Maria Bainbridge. MacKluskie was up against very experienced Emma Gregson and put up a fine performance, just managing to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, 15-14 in the fifth game.

The toughest match was expected away at Northern, but with a strong team including Jo Anderson, Hexham romped to a 4-1 win with victories from Anderson, Alderton, Jepson and Hunter.

Hexham’s third team have had a mixed season so far, although the line-up has varied depending on the availability of players for fixtures.

February started well with a full-strength team taking a convincing 5-0 victory over Consett IV.

There were wins for Phil Langley, Tim Anderson, Steve Blake, Luke Radley and Paul Edmunds.

This was followed by a much tougher match against league leaders Consett III, which Hexham lost 4-1 despite their best efforts.

Captain Anderson managed a 3-1 win, while Max Dolan ran Steve Toal very close, just losing 3-2.

There is much to play for between now and the end of the season for Hexham’s teams, as they strive to climb up their respective league tables.