The Mudgee Tennis Championships was played out for the first time in eight years yesterday, and if the day’s action was anything to go by, it won’t be eight years between drinks for Mudgee tennis fans next time around.
In the end, Anthony Leung took the men’s title in straight sets (6-1 6-1) in the final match of the day against competition dark horse Angus McDonald.
Eventual champion Leung said it was extremely exciting to be the first name on the honour board for some eight years.
“I felt pretty good. I didn’t expect that breeze but at the end of the day I was just happy to get through,” he said.
“I wasn’t expecting that (to win so easily) because you never know what can happen on the day.
“Angus (McDonald) is a really strong player in his own merit.He rallies well and is very consistent, so I just tried to make him hit that extra ball.
“I was just hoping to get my name up on the board, it’s been a really good day – the weather held up for us so I can’t complain.
“I’ll be back next year to try and get my name back up on the board again.”
Although beaten convincingly in the final match of the day, it was an excellent day for the always consistent Angus McDonald, who earlier this year took out the doubles championship with yesterday’s opponent, Leung.
“Very happy to make the final, Anthony (Leung) is a class player and a cut above the rest of us, so I was just happy to be on the other side of the net from him in the final,” he said.
“It was a great turnout today. It was a shame some of the other good players couldn’t be here today because it would have added that little bit extra in the semis and finals.
“It’s about getting everyone from all levels down here though, without them you don’t have a draw.
“It was great today. We had everyone from division two right through to our best players so we’re delighted with the turnout.”
After such a long time in between drinks for the club, yesterday’s tournament has given Mudgee tennis and its committee plenty of confidence that this time next year, the championships will return.
According to McDonald, it’s about building on what the players and officials achieved yesterday.
“I think there will be a lot of people wanting to back up and try and go one better,” he said.
“There will also be some other players that were out with injury who will be keen to have a go next year.
“I really want to stress the importance of the juniors we had play today as well – Sam Roth, Lewis Roth and Joshua Mears.
“It’s a credit to the coach Nathan Wilkins to have those young blokes playing here In the championship and that will continue to be a big focus for us moving forward.
“Next year we’ll be pushing for a lot more juniors.”