Double defeat for British finalists

FINALS weekend at the Frinton-on-Sea ITF Lawn Tennis Championships ultimately ended in disappointment for British hopefuls Tom Rushby and Georgie Stoop, as both were beaten at the final hurdle.

FINALS weekend at the Frinton-on-Sea ITF Lawn Tennis Championships ultimately ended in disappointment for British hopefuls Tom Rushby and Georgie Stoop, as both were beaten at the final hurdle.

Derbyshire-based Rushby, who had done superbly well just to reach the final having not been seeded for the event, was beaten by Kiwi Daniel King-Turner. The women's final saw French No. 6 seed Irena Pavlovic triumph over Cambridge-based Stoop in two sets.Rushby, who had won the men's doubles title the previous day with partner Andrew Kennaugh, began brightly against King-Turner, placing an angled forehand pass out of the Kiwi's reach to break him in the very first game.

Soon Rushby found himself up 3-0 as his consistency and ability to stay in every point began to infuriate his hard-hitting opponent.

Although King-Turner, the sixth seed, was able to seize one break back almost immediately, Rushby remained in control, with his patient style eventually yielding three set points on the Kiwi's serve.


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With another cleverly disguised passing shot, Rushby took the set 6-3 and he picked up where he had left off in the second, breaking King-Turner in the second game.

It wasn't long though before the imposing Kiwi began to find his range and he won the next three games as he started to display the ferocious power that had proved to be too good for second seed Riccardo Ghedin in the semi-finals.

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King-Turner hit one outrageous angled passing shot on the run as he turned on the style, before blasting four aces in a game to clinch the second set 6-4.

With menacing grey clouds beginning to loom large over the Frinton courts, the two finalists seemed tentative, perhaps realising what was at stake in the final set. After eight games and no opportunities to break serve, King-Turner took a chance by darting to the net to put away a decisive backhand volley.

The break point that followed was a tense rally that had consisted of at least 20 strokes when Rushby finally made the critical error, sending the ball into the base of the net. With the break point secured, King-Turner hit two fierce forehand winners in the next game to secure the title 3-6 6-4 6-4.

In the women's final, an error-strewn opening set saw breaks of service aplenty. Pavlovic, the fifth seed, was already a break to the good when a succession of misplaced shots by her opponent, sixth-seeded Stoop, handed her a second break and as a result the first set, 6-2.

Having struggled for consistency in the first set, Stoop began the second looking an entirely different player, forcing Pavlovic onto the back foot at every available opportunity. She began to find a great length with her ground strokes and hurried into a 4-0 lead.

Pavlovic, who had looked in imperious form in her semi-final victory over Lindsay Cox, dug deep and was able to take advantage as Stoop began to double fault on a regular basis. Clearly infuriated by her inability to execute her first serves, Stoop lost five consecutive games to find herself facing two match points.

She was able to stave off the first two match points, but in an agonisingly long service game, lobbed a forehand several feet long of the baseline to hand Pavlovic a well deserved victory.

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