Finals Day 2023

On Saturday 2nd September Old Basing Tennis Club held its most successful Finals’ Day ever, with over 40 spectators watching seven matches over several hours of play. It was great to see some new members of the club winning trophies, proving that, if you’re good enough, anyone can win.

The Summer Tournament, organised magnificently by Del Salter had the largest number of entrants that the club has ever seen with a total of 55 matches played between June and September, culminating in 18 men and women trying their hardest on Finals’ Day to win one of the trophies and the accolade of being Champion for 2023.

The first two matches were the Men’s Doubles and Ladies Singles finals. The men displayed some incredibly fast rallies and saw two new partnerships battling it out. Brothers Marcus and James Robertson put up a good fight, but the worthy victors were Jamie Thomas and Andy Riding.

In the Ladies Singles the win went to Jane Reap who played a solid game in the sun and heat, winning in two sets against Bev Cleaver to win her first singles title at the Club.


Next Jamie Thomas and Marcus Robertson played each other in the Men’s Singles and after some spectacular rallies, Jamie retained his title, beating Marcus in two sets and it should be noted he has won the singles title nine times in the last ten years.

Playing at the same time was the Ladies Handicap Doubles, where pairs are given different starting scores to try and even up the play. There was lots of great action to watch with some high, deep shots and the eventual victors being Lynn Pullen and Jenny Vaux who beat Alison Cruickshanks and Jan Petto to the title.

Next came the Men’s Handicap Doubles and the Ladies Doubles finals. Both were very close matches with pairs winning one set each, so it went to a deciding set and in the Men’s Handicap Doubles new members Gary Baker and Ryan Hailey prevailed over Nigel Hatt and Steve Vaux in an exciting and close fought match.

In the Ladies Doubles Final, Sandie Benham and Bev Cleaver won the first set, but defending champions Jane Hatter and Penny Luke came through with some steady, deep returning of the ball and retained the title.

The final match of the day was a two-hour hard-fought and very close battle for the Mixed Doubles title. Mother and son team Lynne and Jamie Thomas lost the first set to Penny Luke and Marcus Robertson, who then had two match points in the second set. But Jamie’s command of the court and his mother’s excellent defending of the net position meant that they won the tie-break in the second set and went on to win the deciding set to retain their Mixed Doubles title.

Special mention should go to Jamie Thomas who won all three finals that he entered.

The worthy winners of the seven finals were awarded their trophies and the runners up were given small runner-up trophies.  Both singles trophies were first presented when the club was formed in 1931.

The final award was the Betty Holmes cup. Members vote for the person who they feel has supported the tennis club and its members in an outstanding way throughout the year. This year the worthy winner was Steve Vaux who has organised three fun Mixed Tournaments throughout the year, has raised funds for the club by selling old tennis balls to dog owners, and has proactively supported the club’s quest for court lighting.

The exciting tennis during the day had spectators on the edges of their seats throughout all the finals and after the presentation ceremony the day was rounded off with a tasty barbeque in the lovely warm evening air.