Totally Tennis performance player and Sherfield School tennis scholar Dean Cooper Kirby saw his latest European tournament title dreams finish at the quarter finals stage at the Pajulahti Cup in Finland.
Cooper Kirby was accepted into the qualifying stage of the TEJT Boys Singles 16 & under event after being 23rd on the reserve list but with players having withdrawn he was offered his place to compete in the draw. Travelling with his father Brian, the duo flew from Gatwick to Helsinki then travelled 110km via train and bus to the remote Pajulahti located at the Olympic Training Centre in Nastola arriving with just fifteen mins to spare before the 6pm sign-in deadline.
The qualifying match was on Saturday against Davis Alksnis
from Latvia and with the chilly -23c conditions it understandbly took Cooper Kirby extra time to warm-up but he won the match 6-3, 6-2 and booked himself a place into Monday’s main draw. Sunday was a match-free day that allowed the main draw players to arrive ahead of the start of the tournament and Cooper Kirby took advantage of the rest day to have a practice hit with a player from Germany.
His first main draw opponent was the unseeded Aaron Matikkala from Finland whom he defeated 6-2, 6-2. He then beat fourth seed Andrey Beketov from Russia (60th in Europe for this age group) 6-2, 6-3 in the second round and progressed to the quarter finals where he faced sixth seed Ugnius Biskauskis, a national player from Lithuania. Biskauskis, a recent European Country Championships competitor, proved too strong an opponent on this occassion winning the match 6-0, 6-4 signalling Cooper Kirby’s exit from the event.
Despite the long journey and flight home Cooper Kirby was back at school the next day. He picked up 40 extra points by reaching the quarter final stage in Finland and that’s seen him move up another 400 places up the leaderboard. Next stop is the San Michel International Tournament in Kordin, Malta this coming weekend where he has been placed straight into the main draw.
Good Luck Dean!
Cooper Kirby is looking for funding for his European Tournaments – read more in previous blog post Cooper Kirby Looking For Sponsorship and his European tournaments in previous post Cooper Kirby Racks Up European Points
Visit Cooper Kirby’s GoFundMe page here for more information and his latest news and updates.
Performance players and Sherfield Tennis Scholars Liam Hignett and Miles Bromilow were members of the Hampshire & IOW 18 and under County Cup team that played last weekend and just missed out on promotion to the next division.
The boys joined fellow Hampshire players Ryan Golesworthy, Henry Bowden, James Blair, Outek Dinapala, Dylan Allenby-Ryan and Mats Colling who made up the team captained by Mike Booth and his assistant Karim Aouichaoui. The team competed in the three day event held at David Lloyd Southampton in Group 3a against teams from Sussex, Cambridgeshire and Buckinghamshire.
On the first day the Hampshire boys beat the Buckinghamshire team 6-3 with Hignett, who was player 1, winning his singles 6-2, 6-3 and his doubles with partner Golesworthy 6-3, 6-3. Bromilow, who was player 4, was also victorious in his singles match winning 6-7(4), 3-6.
Business continued as usual in day 2 with the boys defeating the Cambridgeshire team 7 – 2. Hignett and Golesworthy won their doubles 6-0, 6-3 but Hignett lost his singles match against the top seed after a close second set and tie break 4-6, 6-7(5). Bromilow had a tough three set singles match but came out on top 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 but he unfortunately lost in the doubles with partner Allenby-Ryan 6-7(4), 3-6.
There was everything to play for in the final day with both the Hampshire and Sussex teams on level pegging having won their first two rubbers. On the day Sussex proved to be the stronger opponents winning 5-4 to top the group and gain promotion to the next division. Both Hignett and Bromilow won their singles matches 6-2, 6-4 and 6-7(7), 6-7(7) respectively. After all the singles matches the teams were level on 3-3 but with only Hignett and Golesworthy winning their doubles 6-2, 6-3 the Sussex team claimed overall victory.
Fourteen year old Totally Tennis performance player and Sherfield School Tennis scholar Dean Cooper Kirby is looking for funding to support the continuation of his European Tennis Tour aspirations.
Cooper Kirby has lived in the Basingstoke area all his life and attended the Priory School in Pamber End before moving to Sherfield School. He was introduced to tennis when he was five years old when he started playing at an afterschool club at the Priory School and at weekends he played at Manydown, his local tennis club. He has been playing at Totally Tennis, where he is coached individually by Jordan Frederick, since the age of seven and has amassed many tournaments and trophies over that time.
He won his first County Championship, the 8 & under singles title, at the Hampshire & IOW when he was just eight years old and to date he has won twelve county singles titles including 8u, 9u, 10u, 12u, 14u and 16u. In 2017 Cooper Kirby was Number two in the Hampshire & IOW County Cup Team for 14u and has recently been invited to attend selection training for the 18u County Cup Team.
In the last six months Cooper Kirby has played in Moldova where he reached the quarter finals for 14 and u and more recently in Bergen, Norway. The twenty points gained in Norway means he will move up 400 places on the European leader board and now has a total of forty-five points to date from both events. Next stop for Cooper Kirby is Finland and then Malta before he leaves for a solo trip to Naples, Florida for a month’s training at a tennis academy there.
Click here to find out more about Cooper Kirby’s story and his GoFundMe campaign page where you can make donations, any amount would be greatly appreciated.
Performance player and Sherfield Tennis Scholar Liam Hignett and partner Freya Davies won the second annual Chris Whiting Annual Mixed Doubles Cup played at David Lloyd in Southampton and sponsored by HRG Tree Services.
In the round robin event Hignett/Davies (2017 winner with partner Austin Gwilliam) won all of their matches beating Jamie Donaghy/Kelly Burge, Mats and Summer Colling and a third pairing in their group. Each pair played eight games and each game won counted as a point. As Hignett and Davies won their box they qualified for the main draw where they played the runners up of Box 3 in a full set and won 6-1.
In the semis they beat Harry Wilmott-Stanton and his partner Arianna Kennedy 6-1 to secure their place in the finals where they faced former Totally Tennis players Esther Adeshina and Ryan Golesworthy. They won the match 6-3 to win the event overall, collect the huge trophy and some prize money.
Performance player and Sherfield School tennis scholar Liam Hignett competed in the National Tennis Centre Invitational Winter National Tour Finals held over the weekend at the NTC in London.
Hignett was competing in the 18 and under Boys singles event in the grade 1 competition but unluckily he came up against third seed (and eventual winner) Kai Maxted in the first round and lost 6-4, 6-3 despite an excellent performance.
He recently competed in the Mens Open Singles at the British Tour Bath held at the University of Bath but lost in the first round of the main draw to Luke Johnson 6-1, 6-3.
Totally Tennis performance player and Sherfield School tennis scholar Dean Cooper Kirby won the 14 and under Boys Singles title at Virgin Active Riverside, Chiswick.
After a bye in the first round of the Grade 3 pre-Christmas event Cooper Kirby beat Zak Radziwillowicz 6-0, 6-2 in round two followed by Tom Chapman in the quarters 6-2, 6-1 and Tarique Tonge-Bobia 7-5, 6-2 in the semis. In the final he defeated Tommy Poli 6-3, 6-3 to win the event. Cooper Kirby also competed in the 14 & under doubles event with club mate Daniel Prickett but lost in the quarters to Radziwillowicz and his partner Jago Bluett 4-6, 6-2, 1-0(5).
Hignett (L) and Cooper Kirby (R) were both winners at the Chiswick event (also pictured is Hignett’s Doubles partner Golesworthy)
Fellow performance player and tennis scholar Liam Hignett won the Men’s Doubles title with partner and former Totally Tennis player Ryan Golesworthy (also Men’s Singles champion). After a bye in the first round the pair defeated Oliver and Oscar Jacobson 6-3, 6-3 in the second round, Patrick Mpalanyi and Henry Kuteesaakwe 6-1, 6-2 in the quarters and then beat William Fyall and and Totally Tennis veteran Josh Goodall in the semis 7-5, 6-4. In the final they bet James Weller and Oscar Glenister 6-4, 6-3 to win the title.
Congratulations Dean and Liam!
Totally Tennis performance player Liam Hignett represented Hampshire as part of the Men’s Winter County Cup team in the fixture played at David Lloyd Southampton last weekend. Second seed Hignett (wearing orange shorts below) joined team members Jake Norris, George Houghton, Ryan Golesworthy, Joshua Gook, Edward Percival, Paul Scullard, Harry Wilmott-Stanton and Michael Johnson to compete in Group 3b. The team, captained by Julian Godfrey (pictured below with the team), played against teams from Dorset (Friday), South Wales (Saturday) and Derbyshire on Sunday.
On Friday Dorset beat Hampshire 5-4 overall. Hignett won his singles match beating Benjamin Battey 6-2, 6-0 along with Norris, Scullard and Johnson who all also won to give the team a 4-2 lead going into the doubles. Unfortunately Hignett and Norris lost in their doubles against Battey and Adam Glynn in three sets 3-6, 6-4, 0-1(9) as did pairing Houghton/Scullard and Gook/Johnson so Dorset won the first tie.
Things did not quite go to plan again on Saturday with the strong South Wales team winning 7-2 overall and all six Hampshire players recording a loss in their singles matches. Golesworthy/Houghton and Johnson/Percival both won their doubles to claw back 2 points but Hignett/Gook lost 6-1, 6-0 against Craig Evans/Christopher Lewis.
There was everything to play for on the final day in the fixture against Derbyshire but things didn’t go in the Hampshire teams favour with another narrow 5-4 loss. Hignett won his singles against Bradley Buckland 6-0, 6-2, Houghton and Johnson also secured singles victories so it was level pegging. Hignett/Norris were the only pair to secure a doubles result against Buckland/Dennis Archer 6-3, 6-1. Golesworthy/Houghton and Johnson/Scullard both lost their matches.
After an unsuccessful weekend on the scoresheet despite some really good matches the Hampshire team will now be relegated to Group 4a. South Wales won the fixture and will be promoted to Group 3a.