Room at the inn, as Ann lands national title

Warsop veteran tennis star Ann Brown retained her crown at the British Clay Court Open Championships (seniors over 60) at Bournemouth with her doubles partner Diana Smith

But their semi-final victory over top seeds Pauline Fisher and Shirley Fox in the semi-final shocked even Ann and Diana, who had already checked out of their bed and breakfast and packed for home.

Ann had partnered Jane Timmis to the over-55 version of the title last year but, having reached 60 since then, was now in the older category with a new partner.

“It was really tough this year,” said Ann. “We were only seeded third because we were a new partnership which meant we faced the number one seeds in the semi-final.

“To be honest, they usually win everything so we packed our bags and signed out of the bed and breakfast before the game thinking we would be off home.

“But after we beat them we had to go back and luckily they still had a room available for us.

“It was very difficult but we got there eventually and winning that has got me a place in the Great Britain team for Turkey which is very exciting.”

Ann, a member of Mansfield Lawn Tennis Club, and Diana, of Hereford and Worcester, beat Myra Hunter and Alison Meakin 6-0, 6-3 in the quarter-finals

Number one seeds Pauline Fisher and Shirley Fox were dispatched 4-6, 6-4 (10-7) in a much closer game in the semi-finals.

That brought a very close final against number two seeds Sally Freeman and Susan Winters, which they won 4-6. 7-6 (10-8).

Ann also reached the quarter-finals of the ladies (seniors) tournament where she went down 6-2, 6-3 to number three seed and beaten finalist Sally Freeman.

She has now been selected for the team to represent Great Britain for the ladies seniors in the World Championships which will take place in Turkey in October.

Ann has also won the British National Grass Court Championships in the over-50s section three times in her career and will head back to Wimbledon to chase a fourth title in August.

Mansfield Lawn Tennis Club are offering adult beginners sessions (6.30-8pm) every Tuesday evening until mid-August.

The cost is £4 on the night and anyone wanting to come along is welcome. Further information can be obtained from club secretary John Hutchby on 07711 185828.

For anyone who enjoyed watching Wimbledon and fancies just having a go at the sport, the club’s next Play Tennis open day will be held this Saturday (12th July, 9.30am-12.30pm) and will follow the same format of the one held in May, which resulted in several people showing an interest in joining.

Held at the club’s courts on Pheasant Hill, Mansfield, there will be something for everyone. Children and adults alike will have the opportunity to ‘have a go’ with the coach and some of the club’s members, with the emphasis being on having fun. There will be also be a tombola, a home-made cake stall and a barbecue as well as liquid refreshments.

Mansfield LTC’s men’s first team made a good start to the summer season beating West Bridgford A 11-7 and Woodthorpe 10-8.

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