8U Red East Region Inter-County Event

Tuesday, February 19, 2013
U8 Girls Team 2013

On Sunday 17th February the 8&U inter county event for the East region took place. Bucks came 2nd in the girls event and 8th in the boys event which left Bucks in 5th position overall. A great day of tennis and a great result for Bucks by improving their final position compared to last years event.

The players were

Estelle van Leeuwen (DL Milton Keynes), Darcey Rowles (DL Milton Keynes), Annie Townsend (Halton), Emma Eley (Win Tennis), Rachel Martina Tomlins (Win Tennis), Amelia Peck (Chesham Bois), Callum Fairey (DL Milton Keynes), William Mottram (DL Milton Keynes), Oliver Okhuijsen (Chesham Bois), Tom Bocking (Riverside tennis club), Louis Cooke (Stony Stratford), Jacob Mellows (GX Bull Lane)

Report from captain Jo Head as follows:

On Sunday 17th February the eight counties 8 & under event took place at Gosling, Hertfordshire. Every county in the east region takes part and every county has a team of 6 girls and 6 boys that compete in a round robin event. There is a girls team winner and boys team winner that are decided by the total number of matches won against the other counties. Then at the end of the day one county is announced as the overall winner, which is determined by every county's finishing position in the boys and girls events.

 The girls event took place in the morning with the Bucks team of Estelle van Leeuwen (DL Milton Keynes), Darcey Rowles (DL Milton Keynes), Annie Townsend (Halton), Emma Eley (Win Tennis), Rachel Martina Tomlins (Win Tennis) and Amelia Peck (Chesham Bois) turning up bright and early to warm up. All the girls were nervous but excited and were raring to get started when they finally got on court to start their first match against Bedfordshire. After the first 2 matches we were tied at 1 match a piece as Estelle at number 1 won on sudden death point. As Annie and Emma finished their matches at number 3 and 4 respectively we were still tied with 2 matches each, so it was all down to our last 2 players. They proved too strong for Beds by winning both matches and giving Bucks a 4-2 win. Bucks were thrilled as they moved on to play Cambridgeshire. All 6 matches were close but with wins for Estelle, Annie, Emma and Rachel, Bucks came through 4-2 winners again. The girls should have been full of confidence as they moved on to their next match but when they found out it was Herts they all looked nervous again as we all know how strong they can be. After the first 2 matches we were 2-0 down and the girls seemed very downbeat especially when we were suddenly 3-0 down but when Emma (no.4) came off court having won on sudden death point the whole team became more positive, as if we could win the last 2 matches we could still come out with a draw! As the number 5 players finished we were only 3-2 down and still on for the draw. We were all cheering Amelia on as she came back from 6-1 down to 6-6 before eventually losing 10-6, so Herts took the match 4-2. The girls learnt after that match that they should always be positive as they can beat anyone if they go out and give it their all instead of walking on the court thinking they are going to lose. Next up was Norfolk and Bucks came away with a convincing 5-1 win, which boosted the team again as we went on to play Essex whom are known to be one of the stronger counties. This time the girls were more positive about winning and our number 1 and number 2 gave us a great start by winning both their matches to give Bucks a 2-0 lead. This was the first win for Darcey at number 2 and we were all thrilled for her as she had been working so hard all morning and had lost some close matches. After the next round Bucks were 3-1 up with Emma winning another sudden death point leaving Bucks needing one win in the last round to take the win. Rachel at number 5 came off court with the win as Amelia lost another close match giving Bucks another 4-2 win. Our next opponents were Suffolk who were on a winning streak even though they were missing their 6th player due to illness. As they were a player down Bucks started the match 1-0 up but after the first round of matches we were 2-1 behind and with 2 close matches on court we were on the edge of our seats. Annie (no.3) lost on sudden death point but then Emma narrowly won her match 10-8 which meant Suffolk had a 3-2 lead with the last match to play. Rachel went on court with the whole team cheering her on and came through another close match 10-7 giving Bucks a hard fought draw. The final opponents of the day were Northants where Bucks came through with a strong final performance winning 5-1 with the only match lost on sudden death.

As the final positions were announced at the end of the girls event, the girls were excited that they had a chance of getting a medal by finishing in the top 3 with 5 wins, 1 draw and 1 lose. The girls were so excited when they were finally called out in 2nd place! This was a great result for the girls as they all ran for every ball all day and had such a great team spirit. A special mention goes to Emma and Rachel who were both undefeated on the day.

In the afternoon the competition was repeated but with the boys. The Bucks team was Calum Fairey (DL Milton Keynes), William Mottram (DL Milton Keynes), Oliver Okhuijsen (Chesham Bois), Tom Bocking (Riverside tennis club), Louis Cooke (Stony Stratford) and Jacob Mellows (GX Bull Lane). The boys followed the same order of play as the girls so they started with Bedfordshire too. The first round of matches produced some very long and thrilling rallies but unfortunately Bucks didn't win either and then when we lost the 3rd match the boys realised just how tough the day was going to be. Then we had a big cheer when our youngest player, Tom Bocking won his first match and then Jacob at number 6 won. Unfortunately Beds came through the last close match victorious, so Beds won 4-2 overall. The boys moved on to play Cambridgeshire with the attitude that they wanted to get a better result and take a win this time. Again the team worked hard and had some close matches but Bucks lost 4-2. We moved on to play Herts and the boys went out fighting hard. After the first 3 matches Bucks were down 3-0 but the team were not going to give up and Tom and Louis (no. 5) went out and won to close the gap to 3-2. Unfortunately the Herts number 6 was just too strong and again Bucks were the wrong side of a 4-2 score line. Next up was Norfolk where William (no. 2) got his first win with a sudden death point where he showed that he wanted the point more than his opponent. This tied the teams at 1-1 with Oliver (no 3) in a very long rally on sudden death point, which he eventually surrendered and Tom in a close tussle. As the players went on for the last round the score was still tied, so could Bucks win one more match to get a draw or both matches to get their first win? It wasn't to be as Bucks ended up losing 4-2 again. The boys were working so hard but we couldn't work out what they needed to do to get a different score line. Again it was 4-2 in the next match but Essex were the winners this time. As we moved courts to play Suffolk the boys were determined to get a different score to 4-2. Calum (no.1) got to 9-9 and we all hoped he would get the sudden death point as it would give him a boost to win his first match and give the rest of the team a boost. Unfortunately after a tense rally Calum lost 10-9. As the matches continued Bucks kept losing close matches until in the end Suffolk won 5-1 with Tom winning the only match for Bucks. After a team talk the boys pulled themselves together for the last match against Northants. With everyone willing Calum on to get a win, as he had played so well all day, he moved to a 6-1 lead but the Northants number 1 made a fantastic comeback to snatch the match 10-8. The disappointment soon changed to excitement as William, Oliver and Tom all won their matches to put Bucks 3-1 up. Just one more win would give us the match. The Northants number 5 was just too strong for Louis so as the number 6 players continued their match Bucks was guaranteed a draw. The final match went to sudden death and all of Bucks players and supporters held their breath. After an amazing rally the Northants player celebrated the win and Bucks got their draw.

The boys were disappointed when they were called out in 8th place and I was disappointed for them, as they has all worked so hard all day. Just a few points going the other way and Bucks would have won matches 4-2 instead of losing 4-2. A special mention goes to Tom Bocking who won 6 out of 7 matches on the day.

Overall Bucks came 5th out of the eight counties, with Suffolk winning the title after their girls came 3rd and the boys came 1st. All of the players from Bucks had a great attitude on the day and the team atmosphere was fantastic. I would like to thank all the parents for their support and Venetia Cosier for coming along to support the team all day. Finally i would also like to mention the non travelling reserves that attended the training sessions - Annalise Greenway (GX Dukes Wood), Annie Whale (Berkhamsted), Finn Henry (Chesham Bois) and Daniel McCay Brown (Halton) as they were great assets to have in the squad. 



Bucks Indoor Tennis Centre
Holmers Lane
High Wycombe
Buckinghamshire HP12 4QA
01494 471238