TENNIS: Chatteris club members of all ages enjoy sun-kissed Rickwood Cup Mixed Doubles Tournament
PUBLISHED: 16:10 04 September 2019 | UPDATED: 16:10 04 September 2019
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In glorious sunshine, members of all age and abilities at Chatteris Tennis Club enjoyed a day of celebration of tennis; the sport they love.
The day commenced with the Rickwood Cup Mixed Doubles Tournament, an event which hasn't featured on the club calendar for over a decade.
Reformatted by the event organiser Dave Wing, the 36 participants each played three round robin sets with a different partner, varying in ability.
Using all four hard courts now available, male members of the club were partnered in each of their sets by a lady of any ability, a junior club night member or a senior.
This produced a wide variety of matches of varying standards, including pitching fathers against sons, husbands with and against wives, close friends and rivals playing with or against each other and A team players with some of the youngest and oldest players.
Watched by half the participants off court at any time, together with family and friends, who doubled the attendance to over 70, the event was thoroughly enjoyed by all.
Spectators included both the club's honorary vice presidents Jenny Mandley, the longest serving member of the club and Enid Grainger, past secretary and treasurer.
Three generations of some families including grandparents visiting from South Africa.
Participants included Michael Graves, honorary president of the club and its longest continuous male member, Jeff Dawson the oldest still active player, Liam Garcia who recently at age 12 became the youngest player to represent the club in league matches and Miriam Penegar and Steve Tuffin, winners of the Priddey Cup earlier this year.
The tournament concluded with a final contested by the best performing two ladies and two men from the round robins.
The Winners were Shona Kent, Club Secretary and Ladies A team member and Jonni Henson, Men's A team member.
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In the final, Jonni was watched with keen interest by his mum Carol, his Dad Trevor, who he'd beaten earlier in a round robin, his wife and his young son and Liam Garcia who so recently took his record of being the youngest member to have played in a league match.
Runners up were Cindy Burnley and Liam Malone, both regular League team players for the club. At the conclusion of the tournament, all attending enjoyed a BBQ.
Whilst principally designed as a tennis & social event, the day also raised funds towards floodlighting of the two new courts, for which planning permission is currently being sought.
The crowd for the conclusion of the tournament, the final and BBQ, was swelled by families, many of whom have joined the club recently.
Contributing to an all-time record for family memberships at the club. Many of them will shortly be commencing or returning to coaching after the summer break.
From 2pm onwards they were then able to join together as families and with other members for an afternoon of tennis fun on court, or socialise with everyone else off court.
For over 3 hours all four courts were packed and the sound of people of all ages having fun both on and off court continued throughout the day.
Prior to the presentation of the trophies by club president, Michael Graves, Dave Wing, the event organiser, thanked everyone for coming and paid tribute to the whole committee of this club, which is entirely volunteer run and financed.
He particularly acknowledged the contribution made in recent years, by club secretary, Shona Kent, publicity officer and fundraising co-ordinator, Karen Barwell and chairman/treasurer Simon Grainger, (absent on a family holiday), who together with himself have spearheaded the development of the club, to the award winning and continuously record breaking achievements it has made recently in its 110-year plus history.
Dave dedicated the day and his own contribution to it, to the celebration the following day of 40th anniversary of the day he had married his late wife, Julie.
Julie had both enjoyed a lifelong passion for tennis and membership of club. He summed up the day by saying "Nobody would be have been happier to witness what everyone has enjoyed today; Chatteris Tennis Club, a club for ALL irrespective of age or ability".
For more information, visit: www.chatteristennis.com
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