08 Feb 2013

Dudley plays host to Grade 1 for its first year

News Article

DUDLEY, GREAT BRITAIN: Due to the growing popularity of the tournament with its new Grade 1 stature, top class players from Ireland, Spain, Germany, France and Israel took part for the titles available.

Also, as a result of the large draws in some events, the Women’s 35, 40 and 45 were held on the indoor courts of the All England Club. 

Ana Salas-Lozeno of Spain won the women’s 35 singles, defeating newcomer Anna Bunch (GBR) in the final.  Michelle Oldham (GBR) convincingly won the women’s 40s, beating her British teammate Nina Topper in the final.  She also partnered Sue Wiltshire (GBR) to take the doubles title over the Spanish pair Maria Jose Martin and Carmen Posada.

Rosemary Dennis of Great Britian returned to competitive play in the women’s 50 singles and produced some fine tennis to beat fourth seed Hazel Lingfield (GBR) and push second seed Anthea Stewart (GBR) all the way to the third set tie break only to falter in the final few points.

The final saw Anthea take on her doubles partner and current ITF doubles world number one, Chris French (GBR).  After narrowly winning the first set tiebreak 11-9, she lost the second set 26 to set up an exciting deciding set. After more than 4 hours play, Anthea was to take the final set 64. After such exertions, the pair did were unable to contest the doubles final

Other Women’s events saw Frances Candy of Great Britian retain her 2012 title in the women’s 55s event as well as unseeded Mary Walkerdine (GBR) winning the women’s 75s event

The Men’s events provided some excellent tennis, however few upsets were noted.

In the 35s, Second seed Colin Bennett took the title with Seb Jackson retaining his 40s title.

2012 World No 1 Paul French (GBR) progressed to the final to set up an exciting match against Pierre Godfroid of Belgium. Unfortunately the match was stopped at 41 in the first set after injury forced Pierre to retire.

Andrew Stanley (GBR) produced some excellent tennis to progress to the final where he was to meet fellow countryman John Hilton.  After a tight first set taken 97 in the tiebreak, Andrew was to take control of the match, taking the set and title 63.

Top seed Richard Tutt (GBR) won the Men’s 65 singles after opponent Keith Bland (GBR) was forced to retire in the first set of the final.

Henk Nijeboer of Great Britain produced some excellent tennis to take the men’s 70s title without dropping a set.   

Having won a marathon match against his doubles partner in the men's 75s, Tony McBride (GBR) could not match fellow countryman Bob Milner in the final.  Bob was to take the title with a convincing 62 63 result.

The final singles match of the tournament saw unseeded Peter Ellison (GBR) take the men’s 80s with a win over Gordon Oates (GBR).

The tournament came to a close after 459 matches had taken place over nine days.