The Queen Mary’s College (QMC) tennis mixed team travelled to Aldenham School in Hertfordshire for their latest match of the knock out stages of the Senior Students competition.
The team of Luke Watts and Jordan Mosquera (pair 1) and Andrew Dingwall and Dessi Bratinova (pair 2) had a bye in their first match so needed to win this fixture to qualify for the National Finals in Bolton. Both pairs made a great start with Watts and Mosquera beating the opposing team’s top pair 6-3 and Dingwall and Bratinova defeating the second pair 7-6 (3).
The QMC mixed team who will play in the National Finals in Bolton (L to R) Luke Watts, Jordan Mosquera, Dessi Bratinova and Andrew Dingwall.
QMC PE teacher and tennis team manager Sarah Goldson said “Both pairs served well in the first matches and both Luke and Jordan played well up at the net to cut off any long baseline exchanges.” she added, “Andrew and Dessi had served for the match earlier in the set but were pegged back to a tie break, but lifted their game once again to take the tie break-relatively comfortably.”
Going into the second matches, the QMC team needed just one win to qualify, Dingwall and Bratinova were the first to finish but unfortunately lost to the top pairing 6-3. Watts and Mosquera got off to a great start winning the initial few games to lead 3-0 but again the opposition fought back but the QMC pair battled on breaking serve to win the match 6-3 and securing the mixed team’s qualification for the national finals in Bolton.
Goldson said “This will be a fourth appearance by a QMC mixed team in Bolton and a sixth appearance for the College overall. This was an unexpected surprise for the QMC team this year and we have certainly made the most of an advantageous draw.”
The team along with Saul Irwin (who played in the earlier round) will head to Bolton on Saturday 11 March to compete against Millfield School, Felsted School, Ellesmere College, Strathallan School, Rugby School, Sevenoaks School and local rivals Peter Symonds College from Winchester.
“This will be a great opportunity for the players, we have nothing to lose and as such will hopefully play with a sense of freedom and no pressure,” said Goldson “All five players are certainly capable on their day and it is great that QMC have a place back in the finals after a couple of years where we have just missed out.”
The 2010 QMC Mixed Team who won the National Title and a masterclass at Totally Tennis from Judy Murray (L to R) Ben Jubin, Jack Nicholson, Steph Catlin and Aimee Paterson
The team are following in the footsteps of the QMC Mixed Team who won the National Title back in 2010. Totally Tennis performance players Steph Catlin, Ben Jubin, Jack Nicholson and Aimee Paterson were the dream team who brought the trophy home to Basingstoke. Goldson said “It may be 7 years ago but I still remember it well! I am very much looking forward to see how our players this year get on.” J
ubin is now a full-time tennis coach at Totally Tennis and Catlin is a sports nutritionalist and contributor to this blog.