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Autumn League 2011 & School Visit
19/Oct/2011(No Expiry Date)They were charming guests at the County during the week! Vice Principal, Carmel Hickey, and her delightful troupe of girls from first and second class at St. Joseph's Primary School visited the tennis club whilst on a field study of the history of St. Michael Street.

They were welcomed by County Children's Officer, Ursula Flynn, and enjoyed a wonderfully informative historical talk by senior member and Inter-Provincial player, Paddy Connery.

It was such a beautiful day that most of the proceedings took place at the side of the tennis courts after which the visitors adjourned to the Russell Pavillion for buns and lemonade, then a lively questions and answers session ensued.

The children impressed their hosts with most enthusiastic and pertinent questions, during which Paddy told them about the origin of clay courts at the County, sharing his vast experiences and memories, and everyone learned that the first open tournaments at the County were held in 1926.

It was a very positive experience for the class, and it was hoped that all of them would soon return to the County to enjoy many happy days of tennis there.

Well done to all the girls and their very dedicated team at St. Joseph's!

There was more activity in the tennis club at the weekend which saw the finals of the Senior Members Autumn League take place on Friday evening.

Generously sponsored by Tipperary Auto Care Ltd., Motor Factors, O'Brien Street, this was a team tennis event run by eminent directors, husband and wife team, Donal Noonan and Dr. Collette Gray, Honorary Secretary, Jacinta Coman, and bursar, Matt Ryan.

Lots of players enjoyed challenging matches during the tournament which ran from the middle of August.

The Presentation in the Clubhouse was an animated affair with lots of witty speeches, high spirits and even the odd bit of canvassing for the forthcoming Presidential election thrown in for good measure!

Enjoying the good cheer were John O'Connor, Mary Fitzgerald and Jill McCormack, Philip and Kathleen Purcell and their daughter in law, Vanessa, Margaret Ryan and Toni Nolan, Ian Flynn, Tom and Hazel Russell, Mary Devlin, Norrie Mullins and Pat and Breda Kennedy.

The carnival atmosphere was generated by gregarious leader of the Bar Committee, Eddie Fitzgerald!

The winning team was captained by Sarah Browne, playing with Ken Kingston, Elizabeth Coman, Raymond O'Brien, Matt Ryan and John O'Donnell.

Accepting the Patsy O'Sullivan Cup on behalf of her team Sarah thanked her team mates, the tournament directors, and Eddie Fitzgerald for organising the prizes.

The O'Sullivan Cup Runners-Up team were Josephine Kelly, David Mulllins, Sandra Russell, James Coman, Marcella Kelly, and team captain, Dominic Hayes who paid tribute to all players who substituted on various teams throughout the tournament.

Malcolm Bell captained the team which won the Plate. New Zealand born Malcolm said that he had been associated with many clubs around the world, and the County was a top club, its strength in the people who put so much voluntary work into it.

It was fantastic to be a member, he said! He also quipped that it took tactics to win the Wedgewood Plate, and tennis was the winner on the day! Competing on Malcolm's team were Ailish Hayes, Ferghal Purcell, Deirdre Fitzgerald, Joan Power, and Ann Madden.

Captain of the runners-up of the Plate was Marie Walsh who paid tribute to all involved and her team included Elaine Fitzpatrick, Aston Carter, Benny Dudley, Breda Cummins and Vanessa Purcell.

There was further participation by the Junior Players on Sunday afternoon at Hillview, Clonmel, when Anna O'Dwyer, Lucy Hayes, Ben Kingston and Ben Hogan represented the County on the U14 team at the Junior South Tipperary League.

It was a hotly contested tournament, and the County team exhibited enthusiasm, team spirit and solidarity.

Now that the autumn leagues and junior and senior tournaments are concluded, tennis at the County will wind down to a sedate pace until the first frost when, due to the seasonally delicate nature of clay courts, tennis will be suspended to await the gentler temperatures of spring.

Far from hibernation though, many of the County players enjoy dual citizenship, in tennis terms, and they will continue to play throughout the winter in adjacent tennis clubs.

Activities at the Russell Pavillion will continue with the Christmas party to look forward to on December 9th.

Furthermore, the County is fortunate to count among it membership well known player and Chartered Physiotherapist and Qualified Pilates Instructor, Patrice O'Connell, who is offering Pilates Classes, which are open to the public, for all those who would like to kickstart Monday mornings, and brighten up those dark Monday and Tuesday evenings for the winter!

The County has truly enjoyed a successful and healthy tennis season in 2011, and has brought joy to many players.

Well done to an inspirational President, Anne Bourke, incredible and dedicated Honorary Secretary, Jacinta Coman, indefatigable Honorary Treasurer, Tom Russell, and their tirelessly hardworking committee. We await the days of spring, with great hope!

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