Carter Wins Spring Grandes Dames Cup in Grueling Final

The match ended with a hug…tears, exhaustion. Carol Clay and Brenda Carter battled for nearly four hours on a beautiful Florida winter day (high 60s, not too windy or sunny). By the end of the match, the two players were mirror images, Carter, the righty, hitting deep groundstrokes off her forehand and 2-handed backhand, Clay, the lefty, doing the same, probing, trying to find a way to finish a point against a determined opponent. Carter started the match off strongly, going quickly up 3-0. Clay cut back on her errors and basically hit Carter off the court, taking the set 75. Carter gained more depth on her strokes as the match went on, winning the 2nd set and going up 52 in the third. Clay held off match points in the next 2 games, despite cramping, 54 Carter. This time Carter converted her match point after a long punishing rally resulted in a long forehand from Clay. Clay commented that it was so difficult to keep hitting Carter off the court for a full match. Clay did get a measure of revenge in doubles, combining with Ellen Goodman to beat Carter/Judy Louie 64 76.

In the 40s, Kim Cashman, who upset the top seed in the first round went on to win the tournament, beating Lisa Heidermota in the final.

Trish Riddell continued to dominate the younger divisions of the Grandes Dames circuit, winning the 30 singles.

Carolyn Nichols beat Rita Giles to win the 50 singles and combined with Nancy Szen to win a three hour doubles match over Kerry Young/Cindy Leprevost 64 67 61.

Ria Graham also battled for over 3 hours before beating fiesty Nanda Fischer, in a battle of 2 lefties. Ria won 36 75 75, gliding around the court on long legs and countering Nanda’s topspin groundstrokes. She also went to net a fair amount with good success, and seemed to use much less effort than Nanda in producing her strokes. It was a high quality match.
For all results, click here.

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