Sport

Tennis players back on court

By Fraser Walker-Pearce

HUNDREDS of tennis players from the twin towns and district will take to the courts tomorrow for the opening rounds of the Campaspe and Goulburn Murray competitions.

Fourteen senior and 32 junior teams from the wider Echuca-Moama region will have the ball in their court for the first time this new season.

Numbers have remained steady over the course of the off-season for the Campaspe Tennis Association, with some clubs pulling a team or two out, and others entering more.

CTA president Sarah Crossman said the 2018 edition will be just as strong as its predecessor.

‘‘I’m really looking forward to this year’s tennis season,’’ Crossman said

‘‘The competition remains constant with 14 senior and 32 junior teams, which is super, and demonstrates the great work the clubs are doing to recruit and retain their members.’’

Rich River Tennis Club president Andrew Crossman said things were looking up for his club and the numbers back it up.

‘‘We’re positive in terms of numbers, we have four junior teams, which is up from two last year,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s one of those things — getting them into coaching, and getting them playing competition tennis on Saturdays is difficult, but ideally that’s what we want them doing.

‘‘From a senior perspective we have two teams plus our Goulburn Murray team. We’re stepping up to the GM one competition, which is a big step up and it’s about learning from that experience, we’re certainly capable of it,’’ Crossman said.

Echuca Lawn Tennis Club president Brian Gledhill said he has high hopes for the 2018 season.

‘‘We’re slightly down in terms of numbers on last year, we have nearly as many but (Echuca) South are travelling alright still and we’re in conjunction with them,’’ Gledhill said.

‘‘Hopefully we can build our twilight tennis up again, our midweek ladies is still the same as last year and the bonus is that we have an extra two junior teams in the Campaspe competition.

‘‘We look forward to a good season, hopefully it won’t be too hot or too wet,’’ he said.

Lockington Bamawm United Tennis Club president Grant Humbert said although his club’s numbers were down slightly, the number of teams entered will remain the same.

‘‘The courts are looking really good, they’ve come up nicely after being sprayed and fertilised,’’ Humbert said.

‘‘We’re looking forward to the season ahead, and we’ve been doing some work to our clubrooms which will make it a bit nicer for all involved.

‘‘We’ve already got the concreting done but it’ll be a few more months before it’s all finished,’’ he said.

Echuca South Tennis Club president Daryl Poole said numbers were steady, and his charges can’t wait for the season to start.

‘‘We’re all keen for another whack of the ball on Saturdays. I think we have one less team but we’ve combined our GM side with Echuca Lawn’s,’’ Poole said.

‘‘Hopefully we have people in teams where they have an enjoyable time. We have a couple of functions coming up this year and enjoyment is the name of the game for us,’’ he said.