by: Mike Dunk
It is the intention of The Executive to produce a Newsletter on a regular basis throughout the year. The object will be to keep you up to date with what is happening locally and also of any major developments within the game, whether they are here at home or internationally. When we say “regular basis” it is envisaged that such a letter should go out monthly, but if we feel that events or decisions have taken place that need to be communicated to the clubs, we will do so on a “need to know” basis sooner. We hope these Newsletters will be of interest to all your members and we therefore ask you, as the spokesperson of your club, to see that they are communicated to the members as you deem fit. Most clubs have data bases for e mail and the Letters can be forwarded to them or placed on your Notice Board. We want to communicate with all your members and therefore ask you to assist us in this matter.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
Firstly, a very big thank you to those who attended our Annual General Meeting in July. Yes, we managed to pick the coldest night of the year we know, but the “hardy ones” ensured that we had a positive meeting and the new Executive took heart from this and hope to take this through with them for the year ahead. For the record The Executive is as follows;
President – Bruce Grey
Vice President – Bongani Zondi
Treasurer – Marco Petersen
Club Representatives – Mike Dunk, Rachelle Dennett, Maggie Anderson
Junior Development – Our Development Officer is Mr Louis Bolling who was elected to the position at the Annual General Meeting. We welcome the “new blood” and look forward to innovative ideas stemming from them for the good of tennis in the Province.
On this score I would like to congratulate Bryanston Sports Club for a donation of R100,000 they made to the Refilwe Community Project near Lanseria Airport. Bryanston Sports Club have built two tennis/netball courts for them – complete with poles, nets and fencing. Mr Angus Macmillan, Bryanston Sports Club tennis chairman reported that the money was handed over at a function on Saturday, July 14th 2007 which was attended by Alison van der Molen, a DA Councillor and Dora Madisa from the Johannesburg Property Company.To quote from the press release of 14 July 2007, “the club has also assisted several needy schools and clubs and also has a regular tennis coaching programme which involves bringing children to the club’s Bryanston complex every school term Monday for free tennis coaching by professional coaches.”
Talking of AGMs’, The South African Tennis Association (SATA) held their meeting last Saturday and once again the mood was encouraging for the future of tennis. We all know the problems that have beset tennis and the controlling body in particular, but the signs of better days for all levels of tennis are surfacing. During the past year SATA – -held a Senior Inter Provincial Tournament for the first time for a number of years; held a South African Closed; held an SAA Inter Club Tournament. These are all encouraging signs and it is hoped that not only will these events be held again, but this is only the platform for more of the same. At Junior level, the number of tournaments available is increasing and this can only bode well for the future. Remember that today’s Juniors are the embryo of tomorrow’s seniors.
The big news is that Gauteng Central is to have its own web site. Go to www.gautengctennis.wordpress.com but please bear in mind that the site is very much in its infancy. Wendy Chadwick is setting the site up and over the coming months (and years!) this will grow. Not only will the site have the history of the Province but up to date information on leagues, tournaments and articles of general interest. This Newsletter will appear there and again we ask you to let your club members know about the site so they can be kept up to date with tennis in the Province and in time, on a broader front. This we see as a huge step forward in communicating with not only the clubs but the members as a whole as it is the members who make up the Province.
Sitting here in freezing temperatures, it seems crazy that summer league is just around the corner. Our “flag ship”, Bundes League, starts on Saturday 18 August and we are pleased to say that with the increased strength amongst the top clubs we have increased the league to eight sides with the other clubs represented being ; Killarney Country Club; German Club; Sandton Sports; Florida Park; Marks Park, Fairlands and two sides from Bedfordview Country Club. It is sad to see that Observatory have closed down but pleasing to see that their team of last year has moved en masse to Bedfordview so will be playing under different colours this year. The competition is set to be as strong as ever and we can expect another exciting league. In the Ladies, Bedfordview B and Marks Park C have taken the places of Killarney Country Club and the German Club. The rest of the league consists of reigning champions Rivonia, Bedfordview A and two further sides from Marks Park. The matches will be centralized at Ellis Park with play starting at 12;30 each Saturday. The reason that these matches will be played at The Headquarters is that we wish to encourage a competitive atmosphere and towards the end of the league, with each team knowing what is needed to win or avoid relegation, the intense rivalry should ensure better tennis all round not only for the players but for the spectators. It is a chance for the club members to come and watch and spur on their teams and then enjoy the social side of league afterwards. COME AND SUPPORT YOUR TEAM DURING LEAGUE. Just a reminder to all those clubs who won their Section in the Combined League recently to contact Mickey or Wendy at Ellis Park (011 4025615) to make arrangements for the Club Pack of balls to be collected.
So Wimbledon has come and gone for another year and congrats to Lisle Huber on winning the ladies doubles title with Zimbabwe’s Cara Black. Sadly this is the last Grand Slam that Lisle will win as a South African as last week she took out American Citizenship. Having married an American and made her base there it is understandable but even so it is a sad day for South African tennis to lose someone of her standing. We wish her well playing under a different flag. Talking of Wimbledon and on a lighter note ( and by this I mean my pocket being lighter!) having spent two rather cold, and at times damp, days there, anyone thinking of going should take a second mortgage on their house to cover the basic daily costs. Entrance to the Grounds was 18 Pounds but this does give you access to all the outside courts of which there are 18. So a Pound a court and, when you consider there are sometimes five matches scheduled per court per day, then the cost for each match is a mere 20 pence. Excellent value but now you start paying! The famous strawberries and cream are 9 pounds for a VERY SMALL punnet and rather watery cream! So do what we did and buy from Marks and Spencers at just under 2 Pounds a punnet for strawberries and under 1 Pound for double thick cream; Go to Henman Hill and watch the Big Screen, eat and enjoy !! And by the way a pint of beer and a Pimms will set you back R140 !! But believe me, the experience was well worth it.