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Sidmouth Croquet Club entertained Budleigh Salterton to the annual friendly match on the only passable day of a week of bad weather, writes Colin Walls.

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Both sides fielded strong teams including players who feature in the world rankings. Sidmouth went into lunch leading 6-2, and then managed to repeat the feat in the afternoon to finish 12-4 winners.

The Sidmouth team was Pam Bowra, David Clarke, Graham Harford, Julie Horsley, Mike Taylor, David Temple, Nancy Temple and Keith Thorley. Budleigh fielded Jane Babbage, Chris Donovan, Peter Jones, Alison Maddaford (pm only) Michael Peters (am only), Brian Pollock, Brian Shorney, Barbara Thompson and Jack Thompson, so both teams featured a husband and wife pairing.

Best performance of the day was when Graham Harford beat Brian Pollock by 20 hoops, not as easy as it sounds; most games were fiercely fought. David Clarke beat Brian Shorney (ranked no 599 in the world) by 18 hoops, but was more pleased by his two hoop victory over Peter Jones, which he described as 'lovely', featuring as it did both good flowing breaks and also a lot of tactical duelling.

Congratulations to Sidmouth.

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