Les Grandes Dames: Crawford Cup, Fort Lauderdale, FL

This week there is a USTA Super Category II championship at the venerable Lauderdale Tennis Club in Fort Lauderdale. Named in honor of tournament director emeritus Patty Crawford, the tournament features high level play in a tennis crazy environment. There are eight buildings surrounding the 20 clay and three hard courts here, and most of the residents play tennis; all are club members. As a result, the crowds watching the matches are bigger than those seen at some pro events and the the spectators are a knowledgeable group.

The tournament offers singles and doubles in women’s 45/55/65 & 75 age divisions; there was also a small singles draw in the 85s.

Today I played Anna Greer and won in singles without too much trouble, but Pam Cooke and I had our hands full against Sally Smith and Christie Cherry in doubles. We won 75 63, but were down a set point in the first set at 4-5 before winning six games on the trot. From 3/0 in the second it got interesting but we managed to close out the match with a lot of lobs and an occasional volley.

Tomorrow I play Terri Thomson, a lefty who handled Margy Petit 60 60; in doubles we play Bottinelli/Ginnard, another tough team.

Also in the 55s, Ann Clark rallied from 2/5 down to beat Sally Smith, the #4 seed, 75 62. The other seeds advanced without incident.

In the 45s, Karin Weiner upset #2 seed, Tangerine Manning.

Below are a few of the players who were enjoying watching a good doubles match. Photo credit: Sue Bramlette.

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