Welcome to the International Club of Ireland
"Hands across the net, friendship across the ocean "
To set the game above renown,
To love the game beyond the prize,
To honour, while you strike him down,
The foe that comes with fearless eyes,
To count the life of battle good,
And dear the land that gave you birth,
And dearer yet the brotherhood,
That binds the brave of all the earth.
-Sir Henry Newbolt...
The first day had some close matches but this was surpassed on day 2. In Group B both inter country matches were tied at 3 each and had mixed doubles tie breaks to decide the winner. Against Spain Israel needed to win two 10 point tie break third sets in the no.1 girls singles and number two boys singles to manage to level at two matches each, both teams then won one doubles with Israel coming through in the mixed doubles decider to win the overall tie 4-3.
Meanwhile in the same group Austria went down 3-1 to Slovenia in the singles winning only the number 2 girls match. They then went on a great doubles run winning both the boys and girls doubles to level at 3 matches each. So it was another mixed doubles decider with Austria continuing their winning doubles streak to take the overall match 4-3. This means an interesting third day to see which teams go through to which play off positions with the other group for Friday's matches with Israel currently in pole position.
Maybe not to be out done by the other group there was a great match between Italy and Ireland. After the singles it was three matches each with both the boys number 1 's and the girls number ones going to 10 point tie break third sets with Italy winning the girls 10-7 and Ireland the boys 14-12. In the boys doubles Italy came through in two sets but the girls doubles split sets and went in to the third 10 point tie break set with Italy coming through 10-8 to take the overall tie and avoid a mixed doubles decider. In the remaining match GB won comfortably over Germany 6-0 but it to had some good matches including two that went to third set 10 point tie breaks. So the overall result was perhaps a bit flattering to GB and not fully representative of some good performances from Germany.
So it is: Group A Italy 2, Great Britain 1, Ireland 1, Germany 0
Group B Israel 2, Austria 1, Slovenia 1, Spain 0
This has probably been the most closely contested regional challenge for some time with strong consistent performances by all teams giving them a great tennis experience and feeling of team camaraderie.
After the matches the teams were taken on a coach tour of Frankfurt. Tomorrow evening our hosts Germany have put together a Tennis Dinner Quiz for all the teams that will be held at The Frankfurt Palmgarten Tennis Club ...... no phones and Google will be allowed !!!!!
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