Thursday, August 15, 2013
The Tennis Section of the Budleigh Salterton Games Club held its annual Finals Day tournament, writes Bonnie Blackwell
The tournament is a culmination of matches played among club members during the summer season. The glorious weather over the past few weeks has meant that almost all of the games could be played on the grass courts and Saturday was no exception. There was a festive atmosphere at the grounds and good viewing for the spectators.
Play began at 11am with the Super Vets Ladies Doubles. This is a category that was created for the over-seventy ladies, but their ages belie the quality of their tennis!
The match, umpired by George Norman, was won by Jennie Capel-Jones and Lorna Hitt, whose relaxed styles of playing disguised their serious intentions! They defeated Rosemary Carmichael and Wendy Watkis 6-1, 6-2.
At the same time the Men’s Vets Doubles was being contested between Patrick Hamilton and Keith Ward against Lynn Jones and Trevor Teed. The players were fairly evenly matched and the first set lasted nearly an hour. In the end Jones and Teed triumphed 7-5, 6-2. Hannah Odam umpired.
These matches were followed by the Men’s and Ladies’ Singles finals.
Pete Waller competed against Nick Brown, both tall men capable of good court coverage. It was a three set match, but in the end Waller took the title with a final score of 6-3, 3-6, 6-1. Ian Lowles was the umpire for this match. The Ladies’ Singles was a repeat of last year’s draw. Hannah Odam took on Antonia Hislop reversing last year’s result which had been won by the latter.
This time round Odam claimed the title after two closely fought sets 7-6 (winning a tie-break) and 6-4. Dion Newcombe took the umpire’s chair.
The Vets Mixed Doubles was the mostly closely contended match, fought by John Chard and Rose Jessen versus John Burton and Mags Milne. Chard and Jessen won through in two sets, both of which had to be decided on tie breaks, a tricky test for umpire, Steve Andrews.
It was a mother and daughter battle in the Mixed Doubles between Kathryn and Antonia Hislop. Their partners were George Norman and Nick Brown respectively. Ultimately experience triumphed over youth with Hislop junior and Norman winning 6-4, 6-4. This match was umpired by Mary Lowles.
Bridget Andrews and Susan Ryland (both of whom have won the cup on previous occasions) challenged Bonnie Blackwell and Gill Clay in the Vets Ladies Doubles. Andrews showed a strong crosscourt forehand and Ryland played steadily, but they were no match for Clay’s lethal slice and Blackwell and Clay won 6-1, 6-2. Rose Jessen was umpire.
The Men’s Doubles match, umpired by Antonia Hislop, had Paul Hastier and George Norman pitted against Lynn Jones and Jim McIntosh. Both Norman and Jones had every right to feel exhausted, this being their second time on court, but in the end Hastier and Norman triumphed 6-4, 6-3.
The final match of the day was the Ladies’s Doubles between a team of Hannah Odam and Steph Teed against Anne Boyle and Kathryn Hislop. Hislop and Odam had also played in previous matches, so they did well to recover for this battle. This time, however, it was youth that triumphed over experience, with Odam and Steed winning 6-2, 6-3.
Tea, sandwiches and cakes were served throughout the afternoon and trophies and prizes of tins of balls were presented at the end of the day by games club president, Ron Tyler. The tennis section chairman, Mary Jordan, expressed thanks to Ian and Mary Lowles for their hard work, as always, in organising the competition throughout the summer and particularly for the organisation of the Finals Day itself.
She also thanked everyone who had contributed, from helping to get the courts ready to providing the delicious sandwiches and cakes, not forgetting the umpires who helped the matches run so smoothly.