2018 Finals Day, 2 September
Our Finals Day was on Sunday 2 September and, as befitting the hottest summer on record, we had a beautiful sunny day. This year we had more finals to play than ever.
First up was the Men's Singles Plate trophy where the final pitched Rob Hildick against Andy Coote. Both men played cautiously (Rob reigning in his naturally more explosive game) and the cat-and-mouse approach reflected itself in the scoreline. Rob won the first set 6-2, Andy the second by the same score. But in the end Rob prevailed in the Championship tie break decider 10-6.
Next up was the Men's Singles Cup which saw last year's beaten finalist, Paul Olney, against Paul Curtis. Paul Curtis raced into a strong lead in the first set deploying his formidable forehand to good effect. His opponent pegged him back but Paul Curtis went on to win the set 7-6. Both players were putting a lot of effort into points and it was noticeable that the second set was less frantic as the players wilted under the sun. Paul Olney won that 6-4 so we had, again, to go to a Championship tie break. Paul Olney won this 10-7 and both players were pleased that the match was at an end.
The Men's Doubles this year saw the very strong pairing of Logan Turner & Andy Coote take on Mike Rogers & Paul Olney. The Turner/Coote pairing were too powerful and accurate for their opponents and ran out comfortable winners with a 6-2, 6-3 victory.
The last final was the Mixed Doubles trophy with Logan & Jade Turner against Mike Rogers & Jo Horwood. This was a closer match than the scoreline suggests and particular mention must be made of how well Jo Horwood played in defending the Logan Turner serve and topspin groundstrokes. And it was good to see the Rogers sliced dropshot serve being pulled out again! But despite this the Turners came out on top with a well deserved 6-3, 6-4 victory.
As usual we had a barbecue and thanks to Nick and Merriss Ratliff for organizing this, preparing the food and generally sorting out the catering arrangements. They will be invited back again next year! Thanks also to everyone who participated in this year's competitions. The consensus was that the format worked well but, as ever, Paul Olney welcomes comments on how we can improve the competition.
Report by Paul Olney. Photographs by Andy Coote