A smooth, rain free 9 days of tennis this year with a similar number of competitors to last year (80), albeit with only 7 ladies
AND ON THE 10TH DAY…………………….
Finals Day at ELTC was an oasis of calm amidst the chaos all around us. First of all there was the problem of Ride London closing at least half the roads again, which I seemed to be one of the few to have taken any notice of. This meant that I arrived ridiculously early, whilst one player (TK) missed his semi-final by arriving nearly an hour late. I had very anxious moments trying to get hold of our groundsman, Will, as he had to get the umpires’ chairs out of the locked back sheds for us, and he arrived only just in time for the first match. His problem was the burst water main in Ealing. This also closed the shopping centre, which meant that the food that Rosemary Maxfield orders and collects from M&S for the LTA officials and myself couldn’t be collected. In the end they delivered the food to her at a Costa Coffee shop somewhere else in Ealing Broadway about an hour later than usual. At about 10:00 I rang Michael, our photographer and my partner, to boast about arriving so early, only to discover that we had a flood in the flat and no running water – so no Michael. By this time we had no running water at the clubhouse, or anywhere else in Ealing. Janice Coulthard made the mistake of contacting me about this and I persuaded her to come along and be my photographer.
So back to the tennis – indoors, of course, as there was torrential rain all around us. Only one semi to play in the top division as T. K. Segbedzie was too late for his semi. Our own Sam Tirodkar against Corey Clark. Corey put up a good fight, losing 6-4, 4-6, 6-10, but winning £50 and a Nando’s voucher each for him and his father, who had been duty chauffeur all week.
The next match was also indoors –the ladies’ final between a new player to us, Helen Anderson, and Patsy Mindham, a regular at Ealing. 3 sets here with a win for Helen, 3-6, 6-2, 6-1. A voucher for Quantus restaurant and Nando’s Ealing Common for Helen and a La Mancha voucher for Patsy. Both Quantus and La Mancha are very nice Chiswick restaurants and are new sponsors for us.
We did manage to play the men’s 8.2-7.2 outside on the new artificial clay courts, and this resulted in a win for one of our Italian contingent, Marco de Santis by 6-1, 6-0, over Vincent Starr who had been playing all week from the 10.2/9.1 division up to the top group. So £100 and a Cote of Ealing voucher for £50 for Marco and £50 and a £50 Wigmore Sports voucher for Vince.
An attempt was made to play the last final – 7.1-2.1 – outside as well, but the heavens opened again and Sizya Kivanda and Sam carried on indoors – an impressive performance from Sizya of 6-0, 6-0. Sizya got £200 for his efforts and a Cote of Ealing voucher for £100. Sam went back to his babysitting with £100 and also a £100 voucher from Cote.
The 10 & 9 final didn’t happen as Sam Myhrman was injured, so Anoop Sharma had his third walk-over of the week and got a Nando’s voucher for himself and his brother Anil who had been supporting him all week.
And the water started running from the taps again all over London, and I got a nice game of tennis – indoors needless to say - and a lovely glass of wine.
This year many thanks to Barbara and John Hall for helping to produce a splendid brochure, to Rosemary Maxfield for dealing with the food (and Michael Derome for paying for it). To Janice Coulthard for being the official (!) photographer, Crispins Wine Bar for paying for the trophies, Adam Arnold of Heritage Financial Management for paying for the balls. Also thanks again to Iain Britton and Peter Buck as my assistant referees.