Two of the finals in Tennis Shropshire’s Senior Championships went to championship tie breaks, including the longest in the competition’s history, as the popular annual event produced an excellent standard of tennis.
A pleasing entry of 23 pairs from 10 different Shropshire clubs took part in five age groups at The Shrewsbury Club, including some newcomers and also former county players who entered for the first time.
Holly Mowling, the long-serving captain of Shropshire’s ladies side, teamed up with Clare Robinson to win a very exciting ladies over-35s final.
They eventually edged victory 10-8 in a championship tie break after the first two sets in a final, which delivered some quality rallies, were shared between them and their opponents Cheryl Evans and Lynda Richards.
It was a first county title for Clare while it was a welcome first appearance in the Senior Championships for Lynda, playing her first competitive match back in Shropshire for at least 25 years.
The men’s over-35s final saw Adrian Tant, the captain of the county’s over-45s team, retain his title as he partnered Chris Morris to victory against David and Philip Brown, prevailing 7-5, 6-0. For the Browns, it was the fourth time they have been runners-up.
The over-50s ladies final saw Cath Barton and Aude Legeais successfully renew their winning partnership from 2013 by overcoming a new pairing of Renuka Elliot and Karen Pearce 6-3, 6-3 in the final.
The over-60s men’s age group attracted the highest number of entries, with a new pairing of Mike Shaw and Seabury Salmon winning through three rounds before playing their best tennis in the final to defeat Colin Hemsley and Mike Paul 6-3, 6-1.
Meanwhile, the over-60s ladies event produced three of the tournament’s closest matches, with both of the eventual finalists having to recover from a set down to win their semi-finals on championship tie breaks.
Judy King and over-60s county captain Judy Edwards then had to save a match point before securing an exciting 6-0, 1-6, 13-11 championship tie break triumph against Gill Snodgrass and Jane Williams, the Shropshire’s over-65s captain.
It was the longest tie break in the history of the competition, with the result enabling Judy King to retain her title and the Rosie Wallace Trophy.
Tournament organisers Liz Boyle and Merill Holt were delighted with the success of the tournament and thanked Simon Jones and Fiona Jones, the chair and vice-chair respectively of Tennis Shropshire, for presenting the trophies.
The county clubs represented in the Senior Championships were Bomere Heath, Newport’s Boughey Gardens, Bridgnorth, Cound, Longden, Ludlow, Shrewsbury Lawn Tennis Club, The Shrewsbury Club, Town Walls and Worfield.