2009 Review

 

What a remarkable year 2009 was for our many juniors who participated in competitive Opens, Matchplays and Leagues, coaching, social matches, away trips and Tennis for GOAL fundraising events. We’ve had wonderful reports written by the juniors on these activities which have been displayed on their website and notice board and enjoyed by all. Here’s a re-cap of a few of the juniors’ achievements for 2009….

 

Competitions

 

Junior Opens

Our juniors clocked up 322 entries (in all age groups) in twenty Opens. We are proud of our 28 Winners, 23 Runners up, 53 Semi Finalists and 83 Quarter Finalists.

 

The Junior Tennis Championships of Ireland (held in Fitzwilliam LTC) is the annual highlight of the Junior Open Calendar because it attracts the best juniors from the whole country and entry is only by way of qualification. Thus, it is most impressive that 17 of our juniors suceeded in participating. Congratulations are due to Julie Byrne as winner of the Under 12 Mixed Doubles and to Sean O’Rourke, runner up in the Under 14 Doubles.

 

Matchplays

That nine MLTC juniors qualified to represent Leinster in the National Spring Matchplays in Galway (u/10), Cork (u/12) and Waterford (u/14) is very impressive. Well done to Julie Byrne, runner up in the Under 12s. Congratulations also to those who took part in the Winter Matchplays and to our National finalists Julie Ryan, 3rd place in the Under 12s, Fergus O’Rourke, 5th place in the Under 12s and Sean O’Rourke 7th place in the Under 16s.

 

Inter Pros’s

Sean O’Rourke was selected in August, to represent Leinster at the Inter Pro’s in Cork. This was a great honour for Sean and for our Club, as was the selection of Stephen O’Shea as the non-playing Captain for the U14 and U18 Leinster teams.

 

Leagues

We celebrated a remarkable double win with both our Class 1 and Class 2 Under 13 League teams. This success was soon followed with our Under 16s winning their league. Congratulations to all involved! Well done also to our juniors who took part in the Under 12 and Under 17 Leagues – and to all our juniors who very successfully represented their schools in the Leinster Primary and Secondary Schools Leagues.

 

Junior Federation/Davis Cup

An inaugural Junior Federation/Davis Cup for the top Under 12 talent in Ireland took place this summer as an invitation only event. MLTC was among only three clubs in Ireland invited to enter the girls’ section. Our girls’ team comprising of Julie Byrne, Kate Grennan, Ciara Crotty and Julie Ryan finished in 3rd place. This result is a proud achievement as the opposition contained the best players from all the provinces.

 

Senior Opens

Many of our juniors enthusiastically participate in Senior Tournaments and Senior Leagues. Of these, the most notable was the Carrickmines Senior Open in July where they did themselves proud. Well done to Jennifer Crotty runner up in the Class 2 Ladies Singles, Olivia Crossan winner of the Class 4 Ladies Singles and Brian Cullen winner of the Class 4 Mens Doubles. Ten juniors also represented the club in the Senior Winter League winning 25 out of the 35 matches that they played and three of them – Simon Cusack, Amy Ryan and Olivia Crossan remained unbeaten throughout the competition. Ten juniors played in the Senior Summer League and won 23 of their 30 matches. Finally, well done to Simon, Amy and Olivia who also participated in the 2009 adult Floodlight League.

 

A number of juniors also competed in the Club Senior Championships. 18 juniors reached quarter final stages and beyond. Two 15 year olds reached the Ladies Singles final – winner Jennifer Crotty and runner up Amy Ryan. Well done to you both on this great achievement!

 

Junior Handicaps

Our annual Handicap Tournament was a great success. We had 60 juniors participating in more than 190 matches during the week. A lot of juniors entered the tournament for the first time and many of these reached the final stages. Our aim is for all juniors to play as much tennis as possible, make new friends and have fun. Thank you to all the older juniors who helped umpire matches.

 

Junior Championships

A great display of tennis took place throughout our Junior Championship week. We enjoyed a very special final’s day where we witnessed incredible tennis, the special retirement presentation to Mary McDaid, the delicious afternoon tea, the mini fun event and the Speed of Serve Competition in aid of the Tennis for GOAL Fund.

Congratulations to all those who reached finals day and also to Ian McGrath and Caroline Lawless who were awarded the 2009/2010 Juniors of the Year title.

 

Stars & Stripes

Particular credit must be given to Catherine Keane for her initiative in setting up the ‘Stars & Stripes Tournament’ for juniors who do not compete in the later stages of Opens. Our juniors played against boys and girls from Sandycove, Glenageary, Elm Park, Shankill and Newtown Park. Congratulations to our under 12 team which won the overall title for both the Spring and Autumn tournaments. Congratulations also to our juniors who won the ‘Stars & Stripes Under 14 Tournament’ which took place during November and December.

 

Fun Tournaments

Several fun tournaments were organised in MLTC for all ages and standard and include the February Mid Term Tournament, Easter, Halloween and Christmas Tournaments as well as our Over 13s Pizza & Tennis nights. These tournaments are always enjoyable as they involve lots of tennis, prizes and speeches by the ‘captain’ of the winning team.

 

Parent & Child Tournament

This is without doubt one of the most popular events on our junior social calendar. It is organised by Anne Tweedy and as always, her wonderful sense of humour ensures that the day is hugely enjoyable. There was a record entry this year and typically the children ran rings around their parents!

 

Supervised Easter & Summer Tennis

We were delighted to offer supervised tennis during Easter and also during the months of June, July and August. Thanks to our able team of Junior Day Managers and Junior Supervisors – Caroline Grace, Adrienne Cusack, Carol Kelly, Will Wilshere, Alan O’Mahony, Craig Cusack and Adam Craig. Thanks also to the supervisors for organising events such as the weekly U10 and U12 Fun Tournaments, Fun Doubles for Teenagers and Teen Matchplays.

 

Fund Raising

 

Tennis for GOAL

During the year our juniors keenly fundraise for the Tennis for GOAL Fund which was established by Stephen. It is a very rewarding experience for our juniors to help the far less fortunate children in Calcutta. This year the juniors were delighted when 3 of Ireland’s Grand Slam team- Gordon D’Arcy, Luke Fitzgerald and Jamie Heaslip – visited the club to lend their support to the GOAL Day.

€10,000 has been raised each year in the past 3 years. However, 2009 saw a record €17,000 being raised when Lucy Byrne’s dad Philip completed the New York City Marathon and raised an incredible €7,197 for GOAL. The Tennis for GOAL Fund will go towards building eight multi-purpose centres in the Howrah settlements in Calcutta. The money which you have raised will affect and improve the lives of 5,400 people. We look forward to issuing updates on how the Howrah project is progressing which we will post on our website and Tennis for GOAL notice board.

There is a long tradition of club members participating on an individual basis in the annual GOAL Mile in UCD on Christmas morning. For the 28th GOAL Mile, Stephen invited all available juniors and their families to meet at the starting line wearing their red club hoodies. This initiative was an outstanding success as approximately 40 members turned up to enthusiastically represent the club. There was a wonderful atmosphere and it was lovely to exchange Christmas greetings with all our friends.

 

Baby Max Junior American Tournament

Over 20 juniors took part in the first ever Baby Max American Tournament in aid of the ‘Wings of Love’ charity. This charity was set up by Darina Ni Chuinneagain and Declan Donnelly, in the aftermath of the sudden and tragic death of their baby son Max, to help purchase vital medical equipment.

 

Trips

2009 saw the continued development of warm contacts with tennis clubs throughout the four provinces. Year after year, MLTC juniors are invited and welcomed back to clubs such as Irvinestown, Castlebar, Rushbrooke in Cork, Mullingar and Naas. Our juniors really enjoy and benefit from the overnight trips out of Dublin which, of course, could not happen without the support of volunteer parents who deserve a big thanks.

In addition to tennis trips many of the juniors got the opportunity to travel to Baltray for the Pro-Am day of this year’s Irish Open. They were lucky enough to meet and take photos of Rory McIlroy, the most exciting young golfer in the world today. Thanks to Johnny O’Shea for organising the trip.

 

Website

The junior section of the website was overhauled in 2009 to reflect the variety of our juniors’ activities. It not only acts as a notice board but also showcases juniors’ activities by publishing photographs and the reports they write. It also communicates achievements of notable juniors in years gone by, such as Monkstown’s only Junior Irish Champion. A dedicated Tennis for GOAL section is another innovation. Thank you to all contributors to the website.

 

Thank you

So as you can see 2009 has been a great year – all of which could not have happened without the help and support of the following people:-

Stephen

Judy

Our Junior Committee – Jacqui Byrne, Jennifer Byrne, Paula Crotty, Veronica Cullen, Orla Earle, Rhona Faughnan, Roseanne Murray, Andrea McAuley, Edel McGovern, Helen Ryan, Aoife Stokes and Mary Catherine Watson

Our coaches – Stephen, Adrienne, Brian, Carol, Grace, Karen and Michael

Our webmaster – Richard Watson

Our photographer – Seamus MacKenna

Catherine Keane

Anne Tweedy

Johnny O’Shea

Our Easter and Summer Day Managers and Supervisors – Caroline Grace, Adrienne Cusack, Carol Kelly, Will Wilshere, Alan O’Mahony, Craig Cusack and Adam Craig

Our Ladies Captain – Carol

Our Men’s Captain – Brendan

And our very capable older juniors who help umpire matches and run fun tournaments

 

Looking forward to 2010!

 

Anne

 

PS – All the wonderful 2009 reports written by our juniors can be foundin the Memories section of the website