Last week saw the conclusion of The Norfolk School Games Finals across several sports. On the final day of competition, 128 Year 3/4 pupils from 32 schools enjoyed a knock out Mini Tennis event at UEA Sportspark. A record entry for this competition.
All schools had previously qualified through level 2, School Sports Partnership events, which for many was their first experience of competitive tennis.
Although playing singles matches against their opposite number from opposing schools, with 4 players per team it was a team competition. This format also enabled each player to play 5 matches, with a total of over 300 matches being completed during the event. The forward/backward draw enabled schools to continue competing against different schools and against schools at a similar level, before being placed 1-32. The final standings were as follows: 1- St Martha’s Roman Catholic, 2- Catton Grove, 3- Little Plumstead with Hingham 2 finishing 17th winning the consolation plate.
Event Organiser Stuart Silvester said “We were keen to open the event up to as many pupils as possible. At school games level we are not concerned about discovering the next Wimbledon champion, but if we can get numbers playing and steer them towards clubs and coaching programmes then we should be on the right track.”
The event was supported by Norfolk LTA and a big thank you must go to Chris Evans (Norwich Parks Tennis) and Sam Howlett (Wymondham & Hingham Tennis) for volunteering to marshal the tennis halls on the day.
Ex Wimbledon and Davis Cup star Richard Bloomfield was on hand to present certificates for sportsmanship awards and the prizes for top 3 placed teams and consolation winner. Richard said “It was great to see so many young players enjoying competing against each other. There was a great atmosphere at the event which was really well organised. Hopefully we can fully engage the children now and get them into local coaching programmes.”
At the end of the event all competitors received a certificate and invitation to attend a Norfolk LTA Mini Tennis Roadshow, visiting the following clubs: Wymondham TC, Cromer TC, East Anglia Tennis & Squash Club and Eaton Park Tennis over the summer holidays.
For more information on playing tennis across the county please contact: email@example.com