Forty Junior players from Newcastle Tennis Club started Spring in style with two Sunday tournaments at the Bryansford Road courts.
Playing a mixture of competitive tennis and tennis-based games, the tournaments provided a suitable format for all ages and abilities.
The first session was all mixed doubles with mostly post-primary Juniors involved. Four half hour sessions played back to back gave everyone a chance to play with everyone else, so it was great fun socially. The Juniors displayed true hardiness by continuing to play even with frozen fingers and very cold bare legs. A break in the middle for hot chocolate in the Clubhouse and a chance to thaw out a bit gave everyone a welcome boost before completing their matches. They all ate together in the Clubhouse afterwards and a party atmosphere prevailed. Each player’s score was kept individually with 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes for most points won going to Gabriel Corrigan, Molly Crawford and Aaron McAnulty respectively.
The second session was pitched for less experienced players who are still very keen to get out on court and hit as many balls as possible! The tournament organiser said:
“Tennis-based games provide a really fun way of encouraging new players to come and play again, the kids just love them. Lots of running around and practising their shots while following the few simple rules of each game keeps them interested in this very special sport. Come along and try it!”
Prizes for this session were awarded for best shots, best catch, and winners of two specific games. Piera Corrigan and Fianna Owens (both in under 5 age group) each won best shot, Hugo Burns won best catch (it really was astounding!), despite some stiff competition Oscar Burns won Backhand Jail, and Cathal O’Baoill won Champions alongside partner Tadhg Owens who also won Forehand Jail. It was extremely cold but even the smallest managed to last the distance and made it to the Clubhouse for a small party afterwards. A very successful day, with more planned for the future. New players young and not so young are very welcome to come and try out tennis, it is a great sport for all ages and all abilities.
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