25th Sep. 11

Sunday very a busy day for Herne Bay tennis club captain, Peter Elsden, as the club staged their Finals day. Not only was he defending 3 titles but he was also in charge of running the tournament and making sure that the day went smoothly. The 1st finals were the singles and Elsden was up against a much younger opponent, Nick Wibberley who is a coach. The match was very competitive with Wibberley pushing Elsden all the way with powerful ground strokes and Elsden responding with spin and accurate placement of the ball. The 1st set went to Elsden 6-3 with just one break of serve and the 2nd set followed the same pattern although Wibberley had his chances to break Elsden he could never quite achieve it and the 2nd set and match went to Elsden. The ladies singles was contested by Nicola and Kay Mileham –daughter –in- law versus mother-in-law and strained family loyalties throughout the close match. Both players were playing well and the 1st set consisted of long tiring rallies. Eventually Nicola’s more consistent ground shots prevailed and she took the 1st set 6-3. In the 2nd set Kay got off to a good start breaking serve to lead 3-1 but she was tiring and Nicola’s stamina and youth proved decisive when she took the next 5 games to win the match 6-3, 6-3. The mens single’s plate was a battle between youth and experience with teenager Daniel Walker taking on veteran Greg Pearson. The pair had many long rallies and Walker lead 4-0 before Pearson won any games. Eventually he got onto the score board but still lost the set 6-3. The 2nd set stayed on serve until Walker broke Pearson at 4 all to win the set and match. In the men’s doubles Elsden paired up with Ian Cooke against the powerful combination of Martin Beckley/Graham Miles. Elsden/Cooke made a tremendous start taking the 1st set 6-1 but Beckley/Miles fought their way into the match and won the 2nd set 6-4. In the deciding set Cooke proved to be the decisive influence by his rock steady play and he and Elsden won the match 6-4 in the 3rd set. In the ladies doubles final the Mileham’s joined forces to take on the defending champions Louise Tucker/Anne Gibbs. The match was very close to start with but after they broke serve in the 5th game, Tucker and Gibbs took control and won 6-3, 6-2. The mixed doubles was the last final of the day and was between Elsden/Tucker and Beckley/Gibbs. This was a long struggle with both pairs establishing a lead and then being pegged back. Beckley/Gibbs won the 1st set 7-5 then Elsden/Tucker the 2nd 6-3. In the 3rd set Elsden/Tucker led 4-1 but Beckley/Gibbs fought back to level the score at 4-4. The match finally went to Elsden/Tucker allowing Elsden to claim a hat-trick of wins. A big thank you goes to everyone who came to support the players and especially to Elsden for all his hard work.