More encouraging results from participation UK tennis tournaments

There were more encouraging results obtained by Maltese tennis players in the UK this year.

Staff Reporter
1 October 2013, 12:00am


As part of his preparation for Davis Cup next year and for Iceland 2015 Mark Gatt went to two tournaments in the UK to get an official ITF Senior ranking.

His results in Tunbridge Wells (Grade 4)were very encouraging as he reached the Quarter finals of the singles, winning his last 16 match 0/6,6/4,6/4 by showing more grit and determination in the second and third sets. He then played the eventual winner who went on to pocket the winner's cheque. In the doubles Mark teamed up with a Hungarian coach who coaches tennis in the UK. In his quarter final match he again rallied from a set down to win 1/6, 7/5,10/8. Mark was then asked to play with just a 15min rest and had to play the strong no. 1 seed pairing including top British player Danny Ward. The no. 1 seeds won comfortably, the final also 6/3,6/0.

Buoyed by his performance that Week which gave Mark an ITF ranking of 666 in singles and 254 in doubles Mark went to a second tournament in Woking (Grade 3) a few weeks later to try and improve his ranking. He focused on the singles this time where he won his first match 6/3,6/4 against the performance coach of Woking Tennis Club. Mark had to serve very well and rally from 1/3 and 3/4 in the second set to win 6/3,6/4. The next day he had to play his second match on a slower porous court due to the rain. He played an excellent 1st set winning it 6/1 in under 20 mins. The second set was different as the balls got heavier and worn out. He lost the 2nd set 3/6 and was 4/5, 0/15 serving to stay in the match, when the lights went out and play had to be resumed the next day.

Before he could resume his match he had to play another match against the no2 seed. Mark again served very well to win 7/6,6/3. He was delighted with this win. Four hours later he returned to continue his semi final match. He evened the match at 5 all in the third and final set. Then his opponent successfully held serve at five all to take the lead again and close out the match 7/5. Mark`s efforts were rewarded that week even though he didn`t make it all the way to the final. His ranking this week is 355 in the world (according to the official ITF Senior Over 35 Rankings)

Mark wants to participate in more of these tournaments. He is currently preparing for the Gatorade Malta Open which starts Sat 5th Oct. Finals will be held Sat 12th Oct weather permitting at the Marsa Sports Club. All are welcome.