We entered 5 teams into the South Devon Summer tennis League this year and reports are compiled below.
MIXED A REPORT
We had quite a good season this year with some really good games closely fought and finished about fourth in the league which compared to the last couple of years where we have been struggling to stay up, this was very good indeed.
I would like to thank everyone who played for the team throughout the season as without you there would not have been a team and made my life a lot easier having players to select. In particular I would like to thank both Peter and Dave as they played nearly every game and Dave was always there to fill in when I had difficulty in finding a man to play at times.
I hope everyone enjoyed the tennis and playing and apologies to Peter for being a bit grumpy on occasions – unfortunately it is due to my competitive instinct! You put up with quite a lot!
Have a good winter and look forward to seeing everyone on court again soon
Our Mixed A Team also reached the Final of the Mixed Knockout Cup where they battled hard but were defeated by Churston Mixed A. Thanks to Velma for managing the team and to a range of members who played in the cup run.
MENS A REPORT
Mens A team season went very well for the new look squad. Many thanks to all other players involved , Jos, Sam, Richard, Ollie and Rudd. Fair to say we all enjoyed it with a few ups and downs as you would expect. After several pre season Tuesday evening training sessions well run by Jos we felt ready to give the title a shake. Which thanks to other team results we ended up doing snagging a runners up medal, only being a few sets behind on the final scoreboard.
Unfortunately we dropped a few sets early in the season finding our feet that we really should not have with our (my) concentration slipping a bit. And there were other matches were we lost a few really close sets .
Looking forward to improving for next season and with the club blessed with a good depth of potential players next year is very promising.
See you all soon.
MENS B REPORT
We had a slightly mixed season in Mens Division 2 which ended with us being joint top with Carey Park but missing out on promotion due to the fact that we lost to Carey Park.
It was hard to get a consistent team throughout the season due to injuries and various other unavailabilities which meant that we used 10 players in total. However, this has meant that a wide range of men have had the experience of match play which can only be a good thing. Thanks to everyone who played including Carl Rugman who appeared for us at very very short notice and put in an excellent performance away to Stover, and Rud who has been ever-present and always immensely keen to play – his doubles play has markedly improved as the season progressed.
I am unsure whether there will be a Division 2 next year due to teams in both men’s leagues struggling to find players.
Thanks, Francis Porter
LADIES A REPORT
The ladies team had some enjoyable, well fought matches-highlights being a great away match against Dartmouth, but unfortunately we ran out of light and were unable to complete the match. I think we would have drawn! The low light evening for me was getting hit in the face twice by the same person (on the opposite team).
My players positions were filled with whom was available and we had a good cover of people and kept pairs together where possible.
Unfortunately we came bottom of the league this year; I don’t think a true reflection, but the opponents got the points that counted.
MIXED B REPORT
For 2017 Mixed C were elevated to ‘B’, which made the captain swagger a little until he was quietly told that the shift in alphabet was a mere technical point that indicated no improvement on 2016. Well, that was a good start to the year.
But fortunately new on the team was Alison Hannah, who had just the right balance of social spirit and cheerful resilience that’s an asset in any competitive group but probably unusual for one who had not played in some of these rather battering league matches before. And then, of course, there’s Sara Widdicombe, who often seems in the team to be more like the golden hub of the wheel than one of its spokes. And Heidi Orrell, whose rather daunting resolution to not flag or fail got us to win when it seemed quite out of reach. John Callaway, our popular social secretary who calls us out on dark nights for riotous feasts and other fanfare events known throughout the county, doggedly pushed on and delivered cannonball serves even when some of his body parts had thrown in the towel. And John Betts, with that highly concentrated and impressively analytical style of play, often seems to figure out what’s happening on both sides of the net, but often makes me feel that I play one-eyed and half asleep. This may also be the opinion of one of the team’s reserve players, Sarah Huline-Dickens, who also has an analytical tendency, but who managed to confine this critical tendency to her opponents for the three times she most affectionately played with her domestic partner. And there are others to thank who played their part: Mike De Vere, Liz Cooper, Della Joint, Heather Nicholson and Don Chalcraft. As for Don, who is currently plastered – insofar as his lower leg is rigidly encased – he’s made the claim that his injury to the ankle was incurred through services to Mixed B. But to fall in battle for a great club, is there a finer purpose?
Of the five clubs we played this year, three were against three new teams at three new venues: Cary Park, Newton Abbot and Kingsbridge Park. Against these unfamiliar three we got fairly even results with Newton and Kingsbridge but were gently mauled by Cary Park. Overall for the year we had more wins than losses, and had a draw, and only one match was rained off. We successfully played Churston in the Knockout Cup by being knocked out fairly swiftly and efficiently by a young and springy team. Perhaps it was good that Don wasn’t with us that day as he might now have both legs plastered.
Was it a good year? Yes, of course it was, because none of us in the core team get much involved with the conquistadorial aspects of the game, and although we all get fleetingly furious at our own mistakes we don’t let a bad score-sheet decide how we feel about playing tennis. Most of our matches are good ones because we all seem to like being with one another, and we laugh a lot at ourselves when others might be in tears.