Bucks Girls 11&U County Cup Report
Team: Grace Cornhill, Mia Krishnan, Tallulah Jervis-Allan, Mokshitha Chinthaparthi, Myah Chang Harper
Captain: Tom Edis
Assistant: Izzy Marshall
Group E: Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire, Northamptonshire, Gloucestershire, Warwickshire
Venue: North Oxford
A super-confident Bucks team went into their (brand new age group!) 11u county cup qualifying event with 6 counties split into 3 groups of 3, with the winners of the 2 groups playing off for a place in the national finals in Sheffield on the weekend of 9/10/11 July. In Bucks group were Oxfordshire and Berkshire. Each fixture would comprise of 4 singles and 2 doubles rubbers.
Bucks flew out of the traps on the Saturday, with Mia and Myah both winning their opening singles matches against Oxfordshire in straight sets, dropping just 3 games between them. Moki had a fantastic scrap against the Oxfordshire #3, but would narrowly lose 4-2 4-2 with each game of the match so tight. Tallulah’s straight sets defeat in her own singles meant that it was all square in rubbers at 2-2 going into the doubles.
Nothing could separate the 2 teams as both traded wins, with Grace and Mia’s victory cancelled out by Myah and Moki’s 3 set defeat. That required the tie overall to be decided by a shoot-out tie break, which meant a player from each of the doubles pairs to play together in a tie break to 10. Mia and Myah were up to the challenge and took it 10-6, and with it the win wrapped up for Bucks!
Next up was Berkshire, who were a very consistent and stubborn opponent; every one of their players gave very little away and Bucks had to work extremely hard for every point. Moki brilliantly made up for her singles disappointment earlier in the day by taking her opportunity versus the Berks #3 – despite dropping the first set. However Grace, Mia and Myah couldn’t quite repeat the trick, with each match either going the full 3-set distance or involving some gruelling tie break sets. The girls were exhausted!
Mia and Grace managed to pull one rubber back in their doubles, but Myah and Tallulah just came up short, meaning an overall 2-4 loss, and a lot of frustration on Saturday afternoon.
Even so, Sunday brought renewed hope. 2nd place in the group gave the girls a shot at 3rd place overall in the 3rd/4th play-off vs Northants. Bucks started to produce their best tennis of the weekend with outstanding singles performances from Grace, Mia, Moki and Myah – with only Grace suffering defeat in yet another closely fought and entertaining encounter. The 3-1 scoreline in rubbers meant that only a single doubles victory would be enough to secure 3rd place. Tallulah and Myah breezed through their match with a double-bagel destruction, meaning Grace and Mia could relax and enjoy what turned out to be a breathless high-level encounter: featuring outstanding reactions at the net, great poaching and brilliant support from the sidelines from the rest of the team. The final 5 rubbers to 1 scoreline – and 3rd place overall - was just reward for the girls’ hard work and dedication in training since the easing of lockdown restrictions. With a fair wind things could even have turned out better still, but the team were not disappointed; the future looks extremely bright as the girls look forward to the 12u competition next year.