The 2023 Men’s Caro Bowl competition has reached an interesting stage after the completion of Round 5 contests on Sunday. Five teams are within 7 points of each other and the competition for a place in the final is heating up. Parnell are the only team to remain unbeaten, closely followed by Cockle Bay, Next Gen, Royal Oak and Karaka.
Parnell won the top of the table clash against Next Gen on Friday on a sets countback in front of a crowd of 200 spectators. Rubin Statham was too good in the top singles, but Finn Tearney continued his good form by dispatching Rhett Purcell and winning the top doubles. Cockle Bay were boosted by the appearance of Alex Klintcharov over the weekend and are well positioned to make the final. Karaka made a big move on the weekend beating Next Gen and Royal Oak. Ajeet Rai made his first appearance this season and the Davis Cup player made a world of difference to the strength of the team. They are seven points back from the leader but if they can field their best players for the last two rounds, they have a chance to make the final.
Next Gen fell back last weekend with two losses but are still a chance for the final. Finn Reynolds was sorely missed, and James Watt was absent after playing the first three rounds. Next Gen will need him back to have any chance of making the final and defending their title. At the bottom of the table, East Tamaki were outclassed again on the weekend but fought bravely and almost picked up their first competition point.
There is also a logjam at the top of the Caro Bowl Women’s standings with only three points separating the top four sides. Parnell head the table despite suffering their first loss of the season against Next Gen on Friday night. Jade Lewis won decisively for Next Gen against Emily Fanning in the top singles to lead her team to victory on a sets countback. Bucklands Beach and newly promoted Cockle Bay are enjoying good seasons to date and lie 3rd and 4th on the points ladder. Bucklands Beach have a tough draw the last two rounds against Next Gen and Parnell so will need to pull out all stops to reach the final.
Campbell Park’s woes continued in Round 4 as they struggle to field complete teams each week. They sit last in the league and are 3 points back from Pakuranga. With contests against Next Gen and Parnell coming up next weekend, they will need to field their best players to have any chance of escaping relegation.
There are a full round of Men’s and Women’s contests this Friday 17 November and the women play again on Sunday afternoon.
Full draws and venues are available in the Caro Bowl section at www.tennisauckland.co.nz. We encourage all tennis fans to come along, support their clubs, watch some great tennis, and enjoy host club hospitality.
Check out our Instagram page Tennis Auckland (@tennisauckland) • Instagram photos and videos to see some history on the Caro Bowl!