Last year, RMTC competed with us on our turf for the Annual Eureka Cup; unfortunately they won 4 rubbers to 2, so took the prized silverware back with them. This year, I had the president’s privilege of assembling the team of warriors (myself, John Dugdale, Greg Reid, Stuart Strange, Ross Troon and Paul Williams), who travelled to RMTC in Richmond, for this years’ battle.
10 handicap rubbers (8 doubles, 2 singles) were to be played, so the day kicked off smartly at 9:00am, with Ross & Paul into battle for the first rubber. The tennis was pretty serious from the beginning, with RMTC proving unfortunately too strong, taking the first rubber 9 games to 7.
The Eureka Cup was last held at Royal Melbourne in October 2010, and Mark Hartnell’s post match report included the wisdom that all players have both ‘Good’ and ‘Evil’ sides, either of which may take to the court for any given match, and many BTC players evil sides’ had turned up. This year, I am happy to report that the majority of BTC players ‘Good’ side took to the court, as many lengthy quality battles were had. Personally, last time my ‘Evil’ side played, but this time I’m happy to report that my ‘Good’ side was present for the 2nd set – a singles rubber, and from 4 games all, I was able to take it 6 games to 4, so one rubber each.
John & Greg were next up, and again a great level of tennis was played, and when they got the score to 8 games to 5 up, I was confident of adding another rubber to our tally. That’s when their RMTC opposition appeared to use their home court advantage, and hit many interesting (read lucky) shots, taking the rubber 9 / 8 – so close guys. Stuart & Ross brought their power game to the court next, letting RMTC know who was boss, winning well 9 games to 6 – now 2 rubbers each.
The next two rubbers didn’t go to plan for BTC, with RMTC winning both, obviously keen to get to lunch in the lead; 4 rubbers to 2 – BTC certainly had some work to do after lunch. The ladies (Larwood Cup) had headed to lunch level with RMTC counterparts, 3 rubbers each.
4 further rubbers were to be played after lunch – we were confident of turning the result back in our favour, but RMTC were again, just too strong – winning the next two rubbers 9 games to 8, again – so close, but these losses had put the cup win out of our grip, being 6 rubbers to 2 down. L That result wasn’t sounding very respectable, which spurred on the BTC to win the last two rubbers of the day, and restore our most of our damaged pride in the end. All our ‘Good’ sides had taken to the court, but unfortunately our ‘Good’ just wasn’t quite good enough, losing in the end 6 rubbers to 4 – but we really were so close, with BTC losing 3 of those rubbers 9 games to 8. Only 1 or 2 more points in our favour in each of those rubbers, and the result could have been a completely reversed.
After much friendly rivalry, RMTC had retained the Eureka Cup, but tennis won overall, with quick speeches and many jokes enjoyed with quite a number of after match drinks.
We must be sure to take the cup back off them, when they come to our court next year.
(Full results following)