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U9 Girls County Cup

Players: Sofia Cancel, Esme Farschchi-Heidari, Jessica Roach and Anna Hellewell

Coaches: Gavin Fowell and Anthony Heald

The players were thrilled that we were travelling to Wales to the Cardiff Met Tennis Academy a four court indoor tennis, University venue. Our team consisting of Sofia Cancel, Esme Farshchi-Heidari, Jessica Roach and Anna Hellewell faced the opponents of South Wales, Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire.

The trip began on Saturday and the long three hour drive awaited. Once arrived the girls practiced at David Lloyd, sharpening their doubles skills and having lots of fun! We then headed out for some team bonding and the perfect diet for tomorrow’s matches, Pizza Express.

Sunday 26th County Cup day. Arriving at the venue at 9am for a warm up and a reminder of Bucks tennis values Humility, Teamwork, and Resilience.

Our first match was against Gloucestershire and singles first, one fast four set, sudden death deuce. Sofia Cancel playing against Grace Leaver at one. High quality contest with some great tennis on show which the crowd enjoyed on court 1. With Sofia showing lots of resilience to come through in a tie-break win 7-4. Court 2 saw Esme playing at two against Olivia Shaw. It ended with a 1-4 loss. But was a really close match which could have gone either way. In game four the opponent got a lucky net cord which swung the match in her favour. Esme was nice and positive with her shot making, just needing to find that balance between defence and attack. Out on court one in front of the crowd after Sofia was Jessica against Lottie Evans this ending in 0-4 loss. This was a tough match for Jessica as Lottie was certainly one of the better players in the Gloucestershire line up. Slow start from Jessica just trying to get the feet moving and couldn’t really get into the contest. Last up was Anna against Bianka Golembka ending with a 4-1 victory for Anna. Really consistent tennis from Anna and keeping them unforced errors down to a minimum. Strong mentality being prepared for those long rallies. That left us 2-2 after the singles and all to play for in the doubles later in the afternoon.

Next opponent’s South Wales. On the back two courts of 3-4 away from the crowd. Sofia involved in another tight contest against Zara Richmond. Coming away with a tie-break loss 3-7. Some strong consistent hitting from both just the slightly more aggressive Zara especially on second serve return coming out on top. But so proud of young Sofia again showing plenty of resilience. Esme was playing against Rosie Morgan on court 4. Esme couldn’t get the better of her more consistent opponent losing 0-4. Esme couldn’t quite relax in this match but was so pleased with her fight and determination in preparing herself for the next match. Jessica against Robyn Thomas. Jessica’s best match in the singles just losing in a tie-break 7-4. The match was in her hands really some brilliant attacking tennis at times just needed to tighten up the unforced errors. Needing something from Anna to give us hope in the doubles later. Up against Sophie Ellis. This again was a battle of consistency absolutely nothing in it. A tight tie-break loss here for Anna 3-7. Anna’s court time was really raking up. Super effort from her but 4-0 down after singles leaving us out of the tie.

Last up for the singles round Oxfordshire. Still out on courts three and four. Sofia back out against another Sofia Bokko. Sofia looked a little tired in this match giving everything but coming away with a 2-4 loss. Next to her on court Esme looking to find her singles consistency against Mollie but found her a little too much losing 0-4. Team was tiring at this point with me and Ant really working hard to fire them up. Jessica’s next opponent was just too good leaving us 3-0 down in the singles with Anna again looking to keep us in the tie. Which she duly did winning against Astrid 4-1 absolutely brilliant from Anna. 3-1 down heading into doubles.

Slight pause in the action. The team, players, parents and captains really coming together. Lovely team atmosphere ready and prepared to show lots of energy and teamwork in the doubles. Back to Gloucestershire for the doubles Jessica & Sofia losing against their number one pair 4-1. Leaving Esme and Anna to keep us in it. They duly did winning 4-1. Special praise to Esme who after tough singles matches really came back fighting and played some brilliant doubles with Anna. 3-3 shootout. Sofia & Esme coming through in the shootout 10-8. Brilliant under pressure and great win 4-3.South Wales next and pride to play for here. Esme and Anna again defining the odds with some brilliant team work and super net play, taking their match 7-4 on the tie-break. Sofia and Jessica thrilling the crowd on court one but just losing there doubles. Meaning a 5-1 loss. Last match against Oxfordshire tight losses in both doubles matches here finishing 5-1 to Oxford.

Overall could not be more proud of the girls. They were lovely together as a team and with great support from the parents, as captain I could not have asked for more. Well done!

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