GALLERY: Bury and West Suffolk Tennis Tournament off to a flyer

10 and unders Bury and West Suffolk champion Felix Dean fires in a forehand on his way to glory

10 and unders Bury and West Suffolk champion Felix Dean fires in a forehand on his way to glory - Credit: Archant

Proceedings got off to a fantastic start at this year’s Bury and West Suffolk Tennis Tournament, held at Culford School’s excellent LTA Performance Tennis Centre facility.

The competition, in its 87th year, played host to an outstanding ’10 and unders’ singles competition yesterday with Cambridgeshire-based Felix Dean taking the boys’ championship and Elissa Wood (Cringleford Tennis Club) the girls’ championship.

In quite remarkable circumstances, it was Dean who was the star of the show, as, playing in his first ‘green-ball tournament’ and playing against competitors a year above his age, he blew all opponents away with some fearless tennis that left the watching crowd cheering in rounds of applause.

After comprehensively topping his group, where he didn’t even concede a game, Dean turned on the style to defeat Kit Ward-Thomas (Stowmarket Lawn Tennis Club) 4-0 4-0 in the semi-finals, before beating fellow Cambridgeshire opponent Richard Bramley 5-3 4-0 in a final of the highest quality.

Meanwhile, Joshua Midwood (Ipswich Sports Club) defeated Ward-Thomas 4-1 4-1 in the third/fourth place play-off.

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In the girls’ round-robin competition, Wood came out victorious after winning all three of her matches with Georgina Gardens (Framlingham College) sealing second spot, Daisy Alfred-Allen (Risbygate Sports Club) third, and Molly Lee (Red Lodge Sports Club) fourth.

In total, more than 180 competitors from tennis clubs around the surrounding areas will take to the nine top-notch outdoor and indoor courts this week in a variety of singles, doubles, and mixed doubles competitions.

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Today sees the ’14 and unders’, who were in early stage action yesterday, take to the courts alongside the ‘eights and unders’ and the ’18 and unders’ - with the nines, 12’s, 16’s and Men’s Open competitions kicking off later in the week.

Tournament chairman and event organiser, Susan Glasswell, has been left delighted with how things have started and is looking forward to what the rest of the week might bring.

“Things have got off to a great start and we can’t wait to see such a good tournament unfold,” said Glasswell.

“The tournament is run by a strong team of hard-working volunteers who work tirelessly year upon year to make it happen, and we can’t thank them enough already.

“I’d also like to thank the major sponsorship from Culford School, and long term sponsors Glasswells plus Ensors, First Choice Marquees, Wildtracks, and The Bury Free Press, for their continued support in maintaining the enjoyment and quality of this traditional tournament since its move from the Victory Ground three years ago.”

Play commences from 9am throughout the week and the entrance is free for spectators.

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