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Mixed year for QMC tennis team
8:00pm Wednesday 14th August 2013 in Sport
QUEEN Mary’s College PE teacher and manager of the tennis team Sarah Goldson has been reflecting on the college’s tennis year after finishing her stint as ball girl/boy manager at Wimbledon.
In a busy year, new teams were established as old players moved on to university and into their careers.
In the Hampshire Sixth Form League, the boys team finished as runners-up to Peter Symonds from Winchester.
The British Colleges South East Regional Competition was run by Goldson and hosted again at Totally Tennis’ Indoor Centre for the sixth consecutive year.
QMC was represented in both boys and girls singles competitions and all three of the doubles events, boys, girls and mixed.
It was a tough competition, with most of the British Colleges National winners coming from this region and competing.
QMC players failed to qualify for the finals in any event but it was good experience for the new players.
In the Senior Students competition, it was the first time in the last four years that a QMC team have not reached the national finals of the competition.
It was always going to be difficult repeating previous successes but the boys team did win their group for the fourth year in a row and were then beaten in a tough match against Sevenoaks in the penultimate stage of the knock-out round. The mixed team also narrowly missed a place in the finals after a tough shoot-out against Kingston.
In Glanvill/Aberdare Cup competitions, both boys and girls teams competed and whilst the opposition was as always very tough, it was good experience for the relatively new teams in the longer format matches.
The college team players once again enjoyed the opportunity to play at the ball boys and girls training sessions at the All England Lawn Tennis Club.
Eight players were also lucky enough to get tickets through the schools ballot, so enjoyed a day on Court One at Wimbledon, where they saw Wimbledon champion Andy Murray.
Several of the college players managed to gain their Lawn Tennis Association Level 1 Assistant Coaching delivered by UCoach at Totally Tennis.
The qualifications were aided by partial funding gained from a small grant received from the LTA. Several of the players hope to gain their Level 2 this year, again through UCoach at the indoor centre.
Goldson said: “In summary, whilst we did not achieve the success we have done in previous years, I anticipated a more challenging year as many of our older, experienced players left in the last couple of years and therefore I had to establish new teams, especially the boys, from scratch.”
“In the boys section, we continue to have committed and enthusiastic players both in the team and recreational players. With our main two players, Loic Armstrong and Ali Olrog moving into their second year, I hope that their experience gained playing this year will stand them in good stead for this coming competitive season.”
She added: “Two of our main girls players, Steph Higgs and Zoe Arden, have now left College. “Their contribution to the girls and mixed teams over the last couple of years has been fantastic and we hope to continue the progress we have made with the girls programme in the coming year.
“With our continued link with Totally Tennis in terms of coaching and facility provision and the proposed introduction of Cardio Tennis, we are very much looking forward to the start of the new term in September.
“The tennis calendar is looking exciting, with the senior students competition getting under way in October and a planned visit to the ATP Masters Final at the O2 arena in December.”
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