Tennis Blues off to a solid start

Gerald Wu 24 January 2013

The men’s tennis Blues were keen to start this term strongly after last week’s match aginst Oxford was cancelled because of the appalling weather. The team’s aim this term is to gain promotion in the BUCS league quickly so preparations for the Varsity match in late June will be unhindered.

Up against the formidable Loughborough 2nds team, the Blues sent a strong team to defend their unbeaten league record this season. Playing at no.1 doubles, captain Sven Sylvester (Trinity) and Tim Prossor (Girton) recorded an edgy 7-5 3-6 10-8 victory over Loughborough’s top pair. After a tight first set, they were unlucky to concede the second set after going down a break early. After regrouping themselves, they surged ahead 8-2 up in the match tiebreak, but some early season rust saw the opponents claw their way back before the Cambridge pair eventually held on to win 10-8. The second pair of Sam Ashcroft (Magdalene) and Josh Phillips (Jesus) recorded a far more comfortable 6-3 6-0 win. After staying on serve until 3-3 in the first set, the Ashcroft and Phillips reeled of 9 straight games to put the Blues in a commanding 4-0 lead.

In the singles matches, Prossor fought hard at no.1 with Loughborough’s top player but fell 6-3 6-3. That was the Blues first match loss of the season after 26 consecutive individual match wins the league this season. At no.2, Ashcroft cruised to a 6-1 6-0 victory with minimal fuss, using his heavy groundstrokes to great effect. Sylvester then sealed the tie with a routine 6-3 6-3 victory on the back of some solid serving at no.3. Phillips wrapped up the tie 10-2 with a 7-6 (7-2) 6-0 victory after a nip and tuck first set that could have gone either way. In the second set, Phillips imposed his superior game on the match to deny Loughborough any consolation victory.

It was a great start to the term for the men’s Blues, particularly with competitive friendlies lined up against the All-England Lawn Tennis Club and the Queen’s Club later in the term.

Gerald Wu