REIGNING Central Wimmera Tennis Association pennant premier Kalkee sent a message to the rest of the competition with a dominant final-round outing at the weekend.
The Kees have regained the momentum that carried them to the 2012-13 premiership, despite struggling to field a consistent line-up all season and enduring form fluctuations.
Steve Schultz and Melissa Beddison bolstered Kalkee’s ranks in a 11-104 to 3-79 drubbing of finals-bound Central Park.
Playing at Central Park the visitors were in control from the outset.
Schultz, along with brother Grant and fellow Kees Jeff Friberg and Dave Richardson, helped his team dominate the men’s section against Central Park opponents Brendan Nitschke, Wayne Schmidt and brothers Kye and Jase Chapple.
The women took care of business as well, although Central Park dominated the women’s singles.
A 9-1 win to Parker Sophie De Wit over Anna Lehmann and Kayla Hawker’s 9-2 win over Carmen Petering gave the home team something to smile about.
St Michael’s wrapped up the minor premiership in a far from convincing 8-103 to 6-60 win over Horsham Lawn Massey.
St Michael’s was the beneficiary of five forfeited sets from Massey, and it needed every one of them.
In the sets that were played the Saints were comfortably bested, with the men losing six of their seven rubbers.
Hugh Gove showed the way for Massey by winning all of his rubbers, but the five forfeited sets proved too much to overcome.
Drung South won the final match automatically after Horsham Lawn O’Connor forfeited.
The results set up an intriguing finals series.
Minor premier St Michael’s has faded in recent finals campaigns and showed shaky form at the weekend.
After flying under the radar for much of the season, Kalkee has finished in second place with a great shot at back-to-back premierships. Perennial contender Drung South is in third, while Central Park claims the last finals spot.
The Saints will play Kalkee this weekend with a spot in the grand final on the line, while an elimination final looms for Drung South and Central Park.
In A Special, Drung South claimed the minor premiership by four games and will be the team to beat in the finals series.
Horsham Lawn finished second, while Central Park Red and Blue occupy the third and fourth spots.
Quantong went down to Kalkee in A Grade play, but retained its place in the finals after Drung South was beaten by Central Park.
The clash between the Kees and Bombers was a curtain-raiser for Saturday, when they will meet again in an elimination final.
Central Park finished comfortably atop the ladder, and will play Natimuk for a place in the grand final.
In B Special, Laharum cruised to the minor premiership with Homers, Haven and Natimuk finishing second, third and fourth respectively.
The B Grade top four was never in doubt coming into the weekend, with Laharum Red, Drung South-Horsham Lutheran, Horsham Lawn and Haven Black each retaining their places.