It was a sparkling day along the Tegernsee, a great day for any outdoor activity…including biking and tennis. I had a nice bike ride to the courts for warm up and another for my match with Olga Markova. It was our third meeting this year, and the second in a final. We got on a bit late as Heidi Eisterlehner’s final with Barbara Von Ende went long (tough match…Heidi led 64 41, but Von Ende, who can run for days, really made very few errors from that point on and moved the ball around; she won 64 in the third). I won my match 61 62. The first set was quick, but the second was longer…Olga got warmed up and started serving, dropshotting and moving better so she could set up for her big forehand shots. We had an excellent umpire…she even warned us not to footfault (which I think threw Olga off for a set, but then she adjusted).
It was also nice to catch up with some other players I haven’t seen for a while; Jurate Hardy from Lithuania (and London), Ellen and Lutz Neumann, Lisa Prechtel, Gina Montelonel and others. The atmosphere as always is quite different here from that at American tournaments, a bit more social and a lot more relaxed about the rules. The German players are by far the biggest group of players in the ITF Seniors and are an interesting lot, and clearly love the game. Oddly, in all the tournaments I’ve played this year, two of which were in Germany, I only played two German players… the rest were Dutch, Swiss, Czech, French and South African, though I did get a default from a German player as well, and played some German players in doubles.
After singles, Heidi and I had doubles, the final. We played two nice German ladies, Birgitte and Christina and won 60 61, but had a few good exchanges and I got to hit some overheads and poaches, which is always fun. The tournament director gave us used balls for the final but did exchange them for new ones when I asked and pointed out that ITF rules had to be followed for doubles and mixed since they are now ranking divisions. And he handed out new balls for the mixed 55 doubles final too. The tournament also gave out prize money for winning the doubles, which for me was a first in Europe other than in the World Championships.
During my various bike rides I got to take some photos again of the lake. There were a lot of boaters out today. This area is really popular with people who live in Munich, as it’s only an hour or so by car (unless the traffic is bad) or by train from the main train station. The hotels this weekend are fully booked there.
Tomorrow is a flying day…back home for a few days before the next adventure!