Crowthorne 2 v Royal Ascot 2 – by Alison Nicholson
Lorraine put out a plea to all lady members in early July, asking them to reconsider playing matches for Crowthorne Ladies 2, to ‘save’ the team and fortunately both Penny Hemingway, currently with a foot injury, and Wendy Miles, relatively new to tennis, stepped forward. So CTC Ladies 2 had a team, and set off for Ascot on a very hot day. Alison Nicholson
The first rubbers lasted a very long time. Pauline and Alison played a very close match vs Gail Nash and Kristy Leeming. The first set was lost 4-6 but they managed to turn it around and were leading 5-2. However, the opposition’s no 1 pair were strong competitors, and fought back to take several games in a row so that Alison found herself serving to stay in the set and the match, at 5-6 down. The Crowthorne pair played a strong game and at 6 all, they also played a strong tie-break, so it was 1 set all. As often happens, having achieved the set, Pauline and Alison relaxed, and the third set went away from them very quickly, and they lost it 2-6.
On the other court CTC’s brand new pairing Penny and Wendy also played a long match, taking it 6-3 4-6 6-3.
So at the interval it was one rubber all with Ascot one game ahead!
Thankfully – given the heat – the second rubbers were much shorter. Penny and Wendy found the first pair a bit tricky and weren’t able to take a game, whereas Alison and Pauline were 6-2 4-0 up when the heat was overwhelming to one of Ascots’ team so Ascot decided to stop. At that point they had won the match by a very tight 3 games. CTC 2 spent the return journey dwelling on various ‘what if’s’, but were extremely grateful for Penny and Wendy stepping in, and hope and think that they had an enjoyable afternoon. How many people can say they won their first Berkshire league rubber ever, even if we lost the match overall, we got an invaluable point!