Woking Open Senior's Tournament
The 17th edition of the Woking Open Seniors was played from 14 to 18 September and once again proved to be very popular. The well-looked-after Woking Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club in Hook Heath continues to attract players from all over Great Britain as well as from overseas. Players benefited from the club’s new artificial clay courts being ready just prior to the event. Ths was in addition to the hard courts available.
Finals’ day was appropriately the high point of the tournament with a number of hard-fought high quality matches, many three set matches, which entertained the crowd immensely.
The men’s 35 singles event was successfully defended by Robert Smith after top seed Sheriff el Essaily from Egypt had lost to Irelands Brian Condren in an earlier round. In the men’s 40 Chris Smith beat David King in a close match with King having earlier disposed of the no.1 seed Stephen Jones.
In the men’s 45 Ian Udal having first beaten no. 2 seed John Loosemore got the better of top seed Guy Sellek in the final 63 26 76(1).
The men's 50s saw a repeat fo the 2015 final with Mark Rowe retaining his title after beating Alistair Alexander in a close three set match.
In the men's 55s, Nigel Mann progressed to the final after beating no. 3 seed Neil Driver 63 36 64. A tough three set match followed in the final for Mann before retaining his title by defeating Peter Occleshaw.
Regular participant and two time winner Godfrey Evans had a tough three set match against Arun Vethakken in the semis of the 60s before reversing his loss of last year beating Jasper Cooper who had ousted top seed Tony King earlier.
One of the most exciting finals took place in the men’s 65 where defending champion Rennie Johnston came back from a set and 5-0 down. After saving a match point down at 5-6, he was to win the match in three gruelling sets.
David Brazier, winner in 2014, took the title again in 2016 after defeating Bev Wilson in the 70s final. The men's 75 title was won by Graham Downes.
The winners of the women’s singles events dominated their respective age groups. Whilst entries were lower than expected, titles in the womens 35,45,50, 55 and 60 took place.
Maia Dunn won the 35s for the third year running. Wins over Ann Taylor, Josephene Jim and Jo-Anne Downing were recorded without dropping any sets.
Isabelle Tyrrell retained her title in the 45s, whislt Alison Hannah-Taylor of Canada won the women's 50s after beating Jane Green 61 62.
Susie Reid took the title in the women's 55s with and Susan Willoughby taking the title in the women's 60s defeating Susan Willoughby 63 61 in the final.
Players were provded with the opportunity to play doubles and mixed doubles. Alison Hannah-Taylor and Isabelle Tyrell were to add the womens 45 doubles title to their singles title with Isabelle going one further by winning the mixed doubles with partner Andrew Hibell.
The tournament was generously supported by the accountancy firm of P.G.Fry & Company. Referee Peter Grimsdale assisted by wife Angela and by Pauline Udal ensured a smooth running of the tournament.
The players enjoyed their tournament and the finalists were pleased with the prize money. Next year the event will be held from 13 to 17 September 2017 and subject to entry numbers it will be attempted to play all matches on the clay courts.
Results can be found by clicking on the following link: Woking Open Seniors Results
Photos can be found on Facebook/wltcc.