The start time for our Club Championships was moved to 11am to avoid clashing with England’s World Cup Quarterfinal. Proceedings started with Men’s Singles and Mixed Doubles.
After taking a year-long sabbatical, Mike Meagan returned to continue his dominance of the Men’s Singles. This year, Gabriel Cooper provided the opposition, but despite Gabriel’s valiant effort, Mike prevailed by 6-2, 6-0.
The Mixed Doubles saw the “professionals” Craig Longman and Vicky McNeight challenged by the “amateurs” George Watts and Liz Mason-Home. The first set suggested an easy victory for the pro’s but the amateurs came back strongly in the second. They had five set points when serving at 5-4, but couldn’t nail it. Eventually Craig and Vicky completed the job 6-0, 7-6.
George and Vicky were soon back on court in the Men’s Doubles and Ladies’ Singles respectively. Alex Parry took on Vicky and provided serious opposition in the searing afternoon heat. However, Vicky prevailed and completed a personal double by winning 6-1, 6-1.
George partnered Ed McIntyre against Callum Leach and John Miller. In the first set Ed and George raced into a 3-0 lead but failed to win another game. The second set followed a similar pattern. Callum served at 1-4 down and after seven deuces took the game. He and John took four of the next five games to complete the win 6-3, 7-5.
By this time, the football was imminent which greatly reduced the size of the audience for the Ladies Doubles, although the girls were probably not disappointed by that! Alex Parry returned to the fray partnering Charlotte Westhead. They played the up and coming Lucy Hamlett and Penny Ellice-Clark. Experience shone through and Alex and Charlotte won by 6-1, 6-1.
The weather, standard of play, excellent BBQ and bar service ensured an excellent day, made even better by the football result! Sincere thanks to all the entrants. It was particularly pleasing to see most of the top players in action and to witness the coaches putting their reputations on the line. Inevitably the finalists take the limelight but the competition’s success depends on the number of lesser mortals prepared to enter.
The administration was first class too. Liz Mason-Home, as Tournament Director, ensured that the timetable was completed on time and that finals’ day ran smoothly. Our thanks are due to her, ably supported by Justin, her husband, for that. Steve Roberts, Clair Miller and Harry Ellice-Clark thankfully stuck to the task of keeping everyone fed and watered throughout the day.
In Craig’s favourite (only?) Spanish phrase “Vamos Hoylake”!