Junior Finals Day

22nd Sep. 18

Herne Bay Tennis Club’s Junior Tournament took place on the 21st July.

The Mini Reds (4-8 year olds) kicked off the order of play with a round robin group format. It was great to see so many new junior members participating for the first time. All players demonstrated a good understanding of the game and were able to show their parents all of the skills they have been learning on a Saturday morning. The final show down was contested by two familiar faces, six-year-old Charlie Weigh and seven-year-old Ethan Roumania, who both made it through to the final for the second consecutive year. In a very close match which saw some great rallies, one in particular lasting 30 shots, ended up going to a tense deciding tie-break. It was Ethan who just managed to get the winning two points to take the title for the second year running.

Next up was the Mini Lower Orange group which saw seven juniors entered. The group stage was closely contested, so close in fact that there was a tie for 2nd place, resulting in a play-off between Charlie Weigh and up and coming player, Lois Courtney. It was Charlie who got the upper hand, sending him through to the final showdown where he would again meet Ethan Roumania. Ethan’s greater consistency of shot in the rallies rewarded him with the victory, winning 10-5 to take the Lower Mini Orange title for the first time.

In the Mini Upper Orange event, we had three entries including: Josh Norton, Lily Weigh and Milly Feakins (our most improved girl from 2017 and 9&U county player). Milly outplayed the others in her group to score the highest number of points and claim the Mini Upper Orange title for the first time.

Our last mini event was the Green ball competition which consisted of Josh Norton, Casey Judd and Milly Feakins all competing against each other. The group stage saw a high level of tennis by the players and it was Casey and Milly who made it to the final. Casey’s determination and experience gave him the edge over Milly to win his first Mini Green title in his last year as a green ball player.

The U14 Boys’ Singles competition kicked off with some great tennis on show. It was fantastic to see a strong number of players entering this year and the standard of play was high. The group stage saw some emphatic wins and some tense battles with four players making it to the Semi-Final stage. Sam Hodge played Jamie Macrae in the first Semi-Final, with Sam recording an easy 4-0 win. The second Semi-Final saw Nathaniel Dunk taking on Troy Judd which turned out to be a blockbuster. Nathaniel held his nerve in the tie-break to beat Troy 4-4 (7-3). It was a fantastic effort by both players with Nathaniel going through to play Sam. In the final, both players played well but ultimately Sam’s experience and court craft showed, winning the title for the first time 6-3.

The U14 Boys’ Doubles Final saw the new pairing of Nathaniel Dunk/Bradley Hopkins take on last year’s finalists Sam Hodge/Troy Judd. The match was very entertaining and after a close start, Sam and Troy played some excellent tennis, especially at the net to avenge last year’s loss and win the title in straight sets, giving Sam his second win of the day. Unfortunately, this year there were no U14 Girls’ Singles or Doubles events.

The U18 Girls’ Singles Final saw a repeat of last year’s title match, with last year’s champion Milly Mileham taking on Kimarie Fielder-Geurts. The girls were evenly matched throughout with both showing off their brilliant groundstrokes and tactical awareness. It was Milly who dealt with her nerves better and raised her game to a higher level when she needed to, winning the title 6-4, 6-3 for the second year running.

The U18 Boys Final saw Josh Deverson against Robbie Benka play against each other in a highly anticipated match-up between two of the clubs best junior players. Josh got the upper hand in the first set and didn’t take his foot off the gas to take it 6-0. Robbie fought back in the second set, cleaning up his unforced errors and forcing Josh to make some of his own, but Josh found an extra gear to win a tense second set with some clean, hard-hitting groundstrokes to claim the title for the first time 6-0 6-4.

The last match of the day was the U18 Mixed Doubles Final. Last year’s defending champion Milly Mileham and new partner Robbie Benka took on the new pairing of Sam Hodge and Kimarie Fielder-Geurts. The level of play was extremely high and the match was very close throughout. Milly and Robbie claimed a tight first set and then rolled to victory in the second to win in straight sets, with Milly securing her second title of the day and Robbie his first.

The 2018 Most Improved Boy trophy was awarded to Sam Hodge and the 2018 Most Improved Girl trophy was awarded to Lois Courtney.

Thank you to all of the players and parents who supported the event and to the coaching team for organising and running the tournament. A special thank you to Cloe Maple, President of Herne Bay Tennis Club, who supported on the day and presented the players with their winning trophies.

14th September 2018