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  • 2021 ITF Seniors (50-55-60) To Be Held in Umag, Croatia June 6-19, 2021 (now 29 Aug to 11 Sept)

    The 2021 ITF Seniors (50-55-60) World Team & Individual Championships will take place in Umag, Croatia from Sunday 6 June – Saturday 19 June 2021. [Update: 29 Aug to 11 Sept 2021]

    From the ITF press release which can be found here.

    The International Tennis Federation is pleased to announce that the ITF Seniors (50-55-60) World Team & Individual Championships are now scheduled to be held in Umag, Croatia in June 2021. [now Aug/Sept]

    The ITF Seniors Committee approved the alternative venue to hold the 50-55-60 World Team Championships from Sunday 6 – Friday 11 June and the 50-55-60 World Individual Championships from Saturday 12 – Saturday 19 June 2021. This follows the decision announced last month that the Championships would not be held as originally scheduled in Boca Raton & Palm Beach Gardens, USA due to the ongoing impact and uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic.

    The ITF will continue to monitor the global impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and work closely with tournament hosts and the relevant authorities to prepare for this event. The priority in all decision making will remain the health and safety of participants. Nations and players are also advised to wait until the tournament fact sheet is published, expected in January 2021, before making travel and/or accommodation arrangements.

    The full schedule of ITF Seniors World Championships in 2021 is now complete with the Young Seniors World Team & Individual Championships also in Umag from 12-25 September and the ITF Super-Seniors World Team & Individual Championships in Mallorca, Spain from 10-23 October 2021.

    Matt Byford, ITF Juniors & Seniors manager said “The ITF is delighted that an alternative host for our Seniors World Championships has been secured so quickly and would like to thank the Croatian Seniors Tennis Association, Croatian Tennis Association, Plava Laguna and the City of Umag for their cooperation. The World Team & Individual Championships are a great highlight of the ITF Seniors calendar and it is fantastic for our playing community that they can now look ahead to June 2021 after the unfortunate cancellation of the event this year.”

  • USTA International Team Selection: New Timelines Posted; Minimum Play Requirements Amended for 2020 & 2021; Application Deadlines Extended for Super Seniors & Young Seniors

    The USTA Board has approved the Senior International Selection Committee’s extension and revision of the eligibility (minimum play) requirement and timelines as follows:
    The application deadline for the 2020 Young-Seniors and 2020 Super-Seniors has been extended thirty days from the original deadline; For Young Seniors May 11th and Super Seniors May 31st. 

    The USTA Board has approved the relaxation of the eligibility (minimum play) requirements for 2020 (For Young Seniors and Super Seniors ONLY) and for Young Seniors, Seniors and Super Seniors for 2021 as follows: 

    1: A Category I USTA Championship must be played within 24 months prior to the posting of the Final Applicant List on USTA.com OR

    2: A Category 2 or Super Category 2 event must be played within 12 months prior to the posting of the Final Applicant List on USTA.com

    What does this mean? 

    A: Super Seniors can apply here to be considered for a 2020 Super Senior team up till May 31, 2020

    Super Seniors must have played a Category I within 24 months of June 9, 2020 or a Category II or Super Category II within 12 months of June 9, 2020.

    B: Young Seniors can apply here to be considered for a 2020 Young Senior team up till May 11, 2020

    Young Seniors must have played a Category I within 24 months of May 19, 2020 or a Category II or Super Category II within 12 months of May 19, 2020.

    The original Guidelines can be found here:  USTA International Selection Guidelines. Section 7 is amended as described above. 

    The new timelines can be found here.

  • USA Women’s 60 Team Into Finals in World Team Championships

    The USA Women’s 60 Team, the Alice Marble Cup, is the first USA team into the final in Ulm Germany. Today we beat France 3/0 behind strong singles performances by Susan Wright and Diane Barker and a strong doubles performance by Carolyn Nichols and Pat Purcell. Wright played a nearly flawless match against Benedict LeGrand, dropping only four points in the first set and winning the match 60 61. Barker followed with a hard fought win over Betty Michel at #1 singles, winning 63 75. Michel is a great mover, especially on clay (as is Barker) and has a terrific backhand drop shot. Barker though was the more aggressive player and much more willing to come forward to finish points. Nichols/Purcell played steady, aggressive tennis to beat Michel/LeGrand 63 62 to make it a clean sweep.

    We face a very strong Australian team in the final, led by Ros Balodis and Lyn Mortimer. They beat Great Britain today, winning both singles in straight sets.

    My doubles partner, Robin Harris, arrived today from San Diego…a very long trip, involving three flights. Of course after tennis we then went to a grocery store, this time a new Rewe. Unfortunately they didn’t have the brand of yogurt Susan prefers (Fage, Greek), but they did have good produce and more variety of products than the Aldi or Lidl…but no peanut butter! (They did have fluffy nuts though).

    We went into Ulm for dinner with Michael Hughes of the USTA and Jack and Diane. We went to a restaurant near the Ulm Cathedral but this time we parked in a parking garage, which was a much better experience than street parking! Though driving is going a bit better (I have a new copilot…long story). I tried to see the interior of the cathedral but it was closed. The outside though is pretty impressive.

    In other USA play, the Men’s 55 had a bye into the semis; the Men’s 50s lost in the third set of the deciding doubles to a very tough Russian team; the Men’s 60s advanced to the semis; the women’s 50s and 55s both won deciding doubles matches. The USA W50s played Spain and rallied from a 0/1 deficit after Spain took the #2 spot over Ros Nideffer. Debbie Spence Nasim won at #1 and Ros/Debbie barely lost a game in winning the doubles point.

    Mary Dailey/Vicki Buholz won the deciding point in the women’s 55.

    In men’s 50, Eoin Collins beat Andre Chesnokov a former top 20 player after USA lost the #2 singles.

    Please click on the following links to view the Draws and Results:

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Fred Perry Cup (M50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maria Esther Bueno Cup (W50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Austria Cup (M55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maureen Connolly Cup (W55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Von Cramm Cup (M60)

    2018 ITF Seniors Alice Marble Cup (W60)

    Draws for the individual world championships are here.

    Tomorrow we have a day off before playing the final on Friday. The individual world championships begin on Saturday.

  • USA Marble Cup Team (W60) Advances to Semis in Ulm, Germany

    The USA Alice Marble Cup team concluded round robin play by beating Argentina 2/1 behind strong singles performances of Susan Wright (winning 61 60 at #2) and Diane Barker (60 60 at #1). Pat Purcell and I unfortunately lost our doubles 62 75 to a very good team, Patricia Candegabe and Beatrix Villavere, the latter of whom is a superb doubles player and Candegabe played and served extremely well too…tough loss but a learning experience.

    I went upstairs to the SSV clubhouse to get ice (and it was there!) and took some photos from the terrace. I have lots of other photos but the cell service here is too slow to upload them…perhaps over wifi at the club one day. We’ve been playing on back courts, so there hasn’t been a chance to get connected there.

    USA vs ARgentina

    Tomorrow we play France for a spot in the final, while Australia faces Great Britain in the other semifinal.

    All six USA teams (men’s and women 50/55/60) won today, so all start either in quarters tomorrow except our team which is in the semis. Men’s 55 received a bye into the semis so have an off day tomorrow.

    Please click on the following links to view the Draws and Results:

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Fred Perry Cup (M50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maria Esther Bueno Cup (W50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Austria Cup (M55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maureen Connolly Cup (W55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Von Cramm Cup (M60)

    2018 ITF Seniors Alice Marble Cup (W60)

    Draws for the individual world championships are here.


  • Practice Day: Tennis & Driving

    Today, Monday, all of the USA teams were off, after a successful opening day Sunday for all six USA teams.

    We were planning on practicing at 3pm till Diane contacted us with the weather forecast which called for rain in the afternoon. She and her husband Jack were going to hit early, and after reviewing the weather forecast, Susan, Pat and I decided to do the same and arrived at 7am. (Jack and Diane were there at 6:30!).

    We thought we’d be bumped before 8am but actually were there for nearly two hours, with the three of us rotating serving on one court and drilling/playing points on the other. After we finished, I tried to find ice for my shoulder. I went to both restaurants on site. One gave me three ice cubes and the other two. I did comment on this to someone working  on site and he  arranged for ice to be delivered, which is great. Ice is just not as ubiquitous as it is in the USA.

    After practicing we went on a shopping expedition. I wanted to find an O2 store to buy a sim card. I selected the closest one on Google Maps and off we went. We ended up in an area near the Cathedral of Ulm (the tallest in Germany).

    The SUV I rented felt like a Winnebago in those narrow, crowded streets. Looking for parking we inadvertently went down such a street not realizing it dead ended into a pedestrian only zone. So I had to back up (after first panicking some). Pat was inside the car looking out and Susan was outside directing me. While I was dithering about backing up, a second delivery van  parked behind me so I had to navigate passing the van on one side without hitting any of the restaurants tables and concrete low planters on the other side. It took quite a while. Eventually I did get out of the alley on one piece and we saw a parking place not too far away. We parked and a few minutes later went to a machine to get the parking pass (which we had to ask for help…it turns out that the fee for an hour was 1,80 but if you put in more than that all your money was returned because no change is given).  Despite paying for the parking we got some sort of ticket! It wasn’t a great driving day, other than we didn’t hit anything or anyone. Here’s a photo of the alley.

    It didn’t work out to get a sim card because in Germany you  have to show not only your passport but proof of staying in Germany in writing and the contract we have was at the rental house. However, the trip wasn’t a loss because Susan and Pat both got European travel hair dryers and Pat got a curler, and I got some Think brand shoes! We also hit our fourth grocery store of the trip (we’ve been to Aldi, Lidl and Kaufland), a Rewe which was very nice. I even found the Feld Salat I was looking for (lambs lettuce).

    We had a second practice at 3pm and did get in about 45 minutes of doubles before it started to rain. At the first drops, Susan was done (she has gut in her racquets and also has California roots…Californians do not play tennis in the rain! We headed back to the house and had dinner (I cooked, anything to get out of doing dishes!).

    Tomorrow we play Argentina, the 8th seeds, for a spot in the semis at 8:30 am…warming up about 7:30am!  They beat Norway today.

    Please click on the following links to view the Draws and Results:

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Fred Perry Cup (M50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maria Esther Bueno Cup (W50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Austria Cup (M55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maureen Connolly Cup (W55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Von Cramm Cup (M60)

    2018 ITF Seniors Alice Marble Cup (W60)

    Draws for the individual world championships are here.



  • USA Marble Cup Team Beats Norway

    The USA Marble Cup team won its first round robin match at the ITF World Team championships today against Norway. Susan Wright won at #2 singles 62 60; Diane Barker followed at #1 singles and won 61 60. Pat Purcell and I finished the tie winning 61 60. We play all matches on the same court; today that was court 8.

    We started today with warm up around 7:30 and finished just after noon. There must be a lot of churches around since at 11 and especially at noon the church bells started ringing. It was very nice to hear.

    I signed the scorecard (four times!) and we returned the water bottles (the system is that each team has one token, good for 6 liters of water; fail to return any bottle and it costs a euro, about $1.15). We returned all bottles!

    By the time we finished playing, the club was packed. We are playing at SSV Ulm and TK Ulm which are separate clubs but literally right next to each other…they use the same check in desk for the tournament even though there are two club houses. The men’s 50 play starting around 12:30 so those teams were arriving and most other 8:30 matches were playing #1 singles or doubles.

    I watched a bit of the men’s 55 against Russia. Stu Saiki looked to be in trouble for a while then suddenly won 26 50 retired. Bill Moss picked up a win at #1 singles to clinch the tie. This red clay is a challenge to many of the players.

    A couple of Americans came by to watch, Michael Hughes from the USTA and Joann the massage person who is there. Jack Barker watched too. It’s always nice to have some home country support.

    We left around 1pm and had the idea of running some errands, going to the grocery store etc…then I remembered it was Sunday and everything (other than the churches, restaurants, and gas stations) is closed. So we went home and did laundry.

    Pat was trying to work; I was trying to get my photos edited and do a bit of blogging; Susan was a bit at loose ends because there’s no WiFi here and she has no data and she was stuck with 2 introverts. (Robin, we need you here!). But we passed the time well enough, I cooked dinner and we are going to bed early because we decided to practice very early tomorrow since it may rain in the afternoon. We have the day off tomorrow as do all 6 of the American teams.

    Draws are here:

    Please click on the following links to view the Draws and Results:

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Fred Perry Cup (M50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maria Esther Bueno Cup (W50)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Austria Cup (M55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Teams Maureen Connolly Cup (W55)

    2018 ITF Seniors Von Cramm Cup (M60)

    2018 ITF Seniors Alice Marble Cup (W60)

    Draws for the individual world championships are here.

  • 2018 USA Senior (M/W 50/55/60) International Tennis Teams Announced

    2018 USA Senior International Teams: W/M 50/55/60

     Maria Bueno Cup, Women's 50   Fred Perry Cup, Men's 50 
    Andrea RiceBethesdaMD
    Eoin Collins, CaptainHoustonTX
    Debbie Spence-NasimCarlsbadCAFredrik SkoglundRockvilleMD
    Jenny KlitchPalm Beach GardensFLTim KullickCharlotteNC
    Ros Nideffer, CaptainSan DiegoCAWillie AlumbaughLeawoodKS
    Maureen Connolly Cup, Women's 55Austria Cup, Men's 55
    Mary Dailey
    Delray BeachFLBill MossMalibuCA
    Shelly Works, CaptainSan AntonioTXKen WhiteElmaNY
    Tracy HoukMontaraCAMike Tammen, CaptainPortlandOR
    Vicki Vasicek BuholzDallasTXStuart SaikiOrlandoFL
    Alice Marble Cup, Women's 60Baron Gottfried Von Cramm Cup, Men's 60
    Carolyn Nichols, CaptainRancho Santa FeCAMark VinesNaplesFL
    Diane BarkerDaniel IslandSCMaxime BuyckxMariettaGA
    Pat PurcellSt. LouisMORoss Person, CaptainHoustonTX
    Susan WrightGrand JunctionCOWes CashChattanoogaTN
    2018 USA Senior International Teams playing in Ulm-Neu Ulm Germany

    More information can be found here. I will update that page with fact sheets, photos and links to draws as they become available. Updates to team members, if any will appear there and on this page.

  • USA Wins Men’s 55, Women’s 60s in Miami 

    The USA women’s 60 team cruised past Great Britain to win the Alice Marble Cup. Diane Barker lost 2 games, Susan Wright 8, in 4 matches over 6 days. Germany finished third. Congratulations to Barker, Wright, Pat Purcell and Leslie Murveit.

    The men’s 55 team, Austria Cup, tied at a match apiece after singles, won the deciding doubles behind stellar play from Ken White (note correction) and Mike Tammen this morning to upset top seeded France, then beat #2 seeded Italy 3/0 to win the Cup. Bill Moss and Tammen won today in singles. Bill White completed the team. France won the bronze.

    m55 with trophy better

    The men’s Von Cramm Cup team, M60, won bronze today over Spain quite easily. Ross Persons and Max Buyckx played singles today. Wes Cash and Sal Castillo completed the team. Australia won and France was second.

    The USA Maria Bueno Cup team lost two very tight singles matches (Jenny Klitch, Roz Nideffer) to fall to Germany. Doubles wasn’t played. Shelly Works and Natalie Herreman-Bagby completed the team. Spain won the bronze.

    In the Connolly Cup, W55, Australia won 🥇, Germany was 🥈and Great Britain was third. USA finished 5th.

    In the Perry Cup, M50, #1 Italy beat #2 France. #6 Germany beat #3 Sweden. Germany quietly had very good results. USA men’s 50 ended up 8th.

    Thanks to Leslie Airola and Denise Saiki for the women’s 60 and men’s 55 photos respectively.

    Photos will be added to this post as I receive them.

    Results and links to earlier Seniors Cup articles can be found here.

  • Semis and Finals of the Bueno Cup

    Semi finals started off with a light rain, which had us begin our 9:30am match, at 10:30, #2 player Fran Chandler, going up against Sue Webb of Great Britan. Fran started off strong, moving  the Brit around, and not allowing her to get any momentum, winning the first set, 6-1.  But, as the second set came around, so did Sue. She began to find her groove, and with a beautiful one hand slice backhand, began to shift the match into her groove. both ladies battled hard with drop shots, volley winners, and long rallies. Fran had 2 match points, but Sue fought hard, with a volley winner for one save, and a drop shot for the next. She then pulled off the set in a tie breaker to even the match at a set each. Unfortunately, the momentum stayed with Sue, and she won the final set, 6-0. Up next, was the #1 singles match, with Ros coming in a bit off, and the #1 brit started off strong, winning the first set 6-4. That didn’t sit well with Ros, and she manage to get her game going with a 6-3,6-2 finish to tie the score at 1-1. The deciding match, doubles,  would determine which team would make it to the finals. Ros and Gretchen would make the team up and finish with a commanding win of 6-1,6-1, which sent us to the finals against France, who won earlier against Italy.

    Finals : It was a beautiful sunny day, perfect for the Finals. Sunny and warm, very little breeze. We were up against the French team that beat us last year, in Florida. We wanted revenge on their home court, this year. #2 singles started up with Fran playing their number two player, who Fran lost to last year. Unfortunately, we lost that match. next, Ros came on to play #1 singles against the player I lost to last year. it was going to be different this time around, with Ros on the team, 😉

    There was no stopping Ros, as she played an incredible match, losing just one game, with a 6-0,6-1 win to tie the match at 1-1. Again, it would be determined by the doubles. And, I had the Dynamic Duo, Ros and Gretchen to play. They came on real strong, with big serves and volley winners, to win the first set 6-1. But the french wouldn’t back down. They put some of their own plays into action, and stayed ahead for most of the second set, 2-0,3-1 and 5-3. But, the americans found a way to dig deep, and close out the match 7-5, to get us our Championship win.

    starred photos 6-13-2015 7-50-57 AM starred photos 6-13-2015 7-58-02 AM


    I couldn’t be more proud of this team. What a great effort everyone put in when needed. Thank you all for this wonderful opportunity. 

  • USA Wins Three Cups in ITF Seniors World Team Championships and One Silver

    The USA did well in the ITF Seniors World Team Championships, winning three of the four cups in which they were the top seed and finishing second in the Von Cramm Cup in which they were seeded #2.

    The Alice Marble Cup, women’s 60 was the first to finish, behind singles wins by Carolyn Nichols and Tina Karwasky. About an hour later, the Maria Bueno Cup team, women’s 50,  finished, winning 2/1 behind strong performances by Ros Nideffer, who won the #1 singles and the doubles point with Gretchen Rush for the second straight day. She demolished her singles opponent today!

    The Austria Cup, men’s 55, came down the the doubles and finished late with the USA beating Spain 2/1.

    The Von Cramm Cup team, men’s 60, lost to Australia.

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  • USA Into the Final in the Von Cramm Cup

    The USA Men’s 60 team completed a dramatic come back win in the Von Cramm Cup to advance to the final tomorrow against Australia. Chris Bennett dropped the first singles match in straight sets. Bill Ashley at #1 then won in three sets, dropping the middle set before winning the final set 62, aided somewhat by his opponent having a pulled groin. Tom Smith and Paul Wulf won the decider 60 in the third.


    Men's 60s, Von Cramm Cup, Chris Bennett, Paul Wulf, Tom Smith and Bill Ashley

  • Friday: Practice and Cheering on the Bueno Cup Team

    Friday was an off day and for once I didn’t rise early to practice at 7am! I did run into Kathy Vick though and she hit indoors at 7am because it was raining in the morning. However, it cleared up by the afternoon and ended up being an lovely day.

    We, Tina, Sherri, Wendy and I took a shuttle to the club for an 11am indoor clay practice and ended up playing for a couple of hours. The clay indoors is harder and faster but not vastly different from the outdoor variety here.

    After practice we went to cheer on the USA Bueno Cup team, the 50s. When we went indoors, Fran Chandler had just won the first set against Sue Webb of Gr. Britain, so when we emerged from the indoor cocoon, we expected to see Ros Nideffer wrapping up the win. However…Sue came back from two match points down to beat Fran for the first time 16 76 60. Sue lives in Tennessee, same as Fran and they are good friends and have played on many teams, Senior Cup and Intersectionals, together in the USA.

    starred photos 6-12-2015 4-24-49 AMstarred photos 6-12-2015 4-24-34 AM


    As we finished practice,  Ros was warming up to keep the US hopes for a title alive. The conditions were heavy and Ros took a while to adjust, playing a bit impatiently at first, but finished strongly and never looked in doubt of pulling out the win. Nonetheless, her team rooted for her vociferously.  She won 46 63 61, winning nine of the last ten games to level the tie. Tracy Houk, the captain, went and changed the deciding doubles lineup from Tracy and Gretchen Rush to Gretchen and Ros and when I left they were up 61 3/0 behind impressive everything…serves, volleys, and especially overheads. Ros has won two French Open doubles titles and Gretchen is also superb in doubles and it showed.


    starred photos 6-12-2015 4-19-22 AMstarred photos 6-12-2015 4-31-10 AMstarred photos 6-12-2015 6-08-33 AM


    USA advanced in the men’s 55, Austria Cup, to the final behind straight set wins by Mike Fedderly and Val Wilder.

    USA is tied at 1/1 in the  Men’s 60s, Von Cramm Cup. Bill Ashley,playing at #1 singles just finished a grueling three set win 75 67 62 around 6pm, so Tom Smith and Paul Wulf will play the deciding doubles.

    USA had the day off in the Men’s 50s and Women’s 55 & 60s.

    In summary: USA to play for Cup on Saturday in Women’s 50s (Bueno Cup) and 60s (Alice Marble) and Men’s 55 (Austria) ; USA to play for bronze in Women’s 55 (Connolly) ; USA to play for Cup or bronze in Men’s 60 (Von Cramm).

    I biked back to the hotel along the beach today, here’s the Pornichet beach.


          starred photos 6-12-2015 6-44-25 AM starred photos 6-12-2015 6-44-32 AM starred photos 6-12-2015 6-44-59 AM

  • Official Dinner in La Baule at ITF Seniors World Championships

    Last night there was the Gala Dinner at the ITF Seniors World Team Championships. All the players were invited and so we had a chance to see the men’s teams, which we hadn’t seen since the opening ceremonies.

    I had stayed late to watch our two potential opponents play the third set of the doubles, Great Britain and France and it went to 7-5 in the third…no problem I thought…wrong, I’d sent my bag…with my bike key (!) with Sherri, the captain…and so had to get a ride back with Ann Clark who was watching the 60s play. (Thanks Ann!).

    I rushed to make the 7pm bus, which left about 7:20. We got to the busy reception area for the dinner and had time to take a few photos, and then photos of all the US teams before dinner was served. Dinner wasn’t started till after 9pm! There were speeches, music and dancing after the first course, then the main course was served. The buses were supposed to go back starting at 10:30, but they left closer to 10:45 (and dessert hadn’t yet been served!).

    Today we have a day off and an indoor court, which is lucky since it’s raining a bit. Tomorrow we play Great Britain for the Alice Marble Cup, which the Brits won last year.

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  • Off Day in La Baule

    Today the Marble and Connolly Cups have an off day, before the knockout rounds begin. As usual it’s extremely windy so it’s nice to have a few hours out of the wind. Even at 7am there was a very strong wind and with temperatures in the 50s, it was cold, though it will be in the 70s this afternoon. Tina and I practiced at 7am because there are no courts available between 8 or so when the teams begin practice till about 4, when the courts start to open up.

    There are more matches than courts so we’ve been starting some matches at 9:30 and playing as usual #2 singles, then #1 singles, then after a break doubles. Normally there’s no more than a 30 minute break and play is resumed on the same court but here the match is moved to a different court at a later time for doubles, since there are three teams which don’t start till about 11:30, after the first matches are finished with singles.

    There’s a super farmer’s market here on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Susan Wright was out trying to find cabbage (choux) and spinach (epinards) for her favorite salad. I found a great watermelon and am going back for a second look! It’s also a good place to practice some French, since no one at the market speaks much English.

    When I went back I took some photos…lots of seafood, and even escargot, lots of sausages, cheese, and beautiful produce…gorgeous tomatoes and delicious strawberries.

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    I rented a bike for the two weeks and have been biking to the club and back every day, about 15 minutes each way, a nice way to warm up and cool down. Only the Dutch players have also rented bikes though. I’ve also biked to the big market, Carrefours where there’s more variety than the small Spar market in the square here.

    Last night we had a picnic in the hotel lobby, the 50s, 55 and 60s team, or the majority of them. I also managed to successfully navigate the laundromat, which is right down the street. With so much wind all our warm ups and other clothing are caked with red clay by the end of the day! Even my ears were full of the “terre battu”.

    Today I ran into Bill Woo who now lives in China, but who lived in San Diego for 10 years. He went to the Young Seniors in Turkey and enjoyed it so much he came back to watch the seniors. He’s a self-described tennis fanatic and a very nice guy…it’s nice to have fans in France!

    Bill Woo 6-10-2015 2-36-02 AM

    Tomorrow we play either Switzerland or Germany. I think they will split the singles and it will come down to the doubles. Great Britain will play Netherlands or France, a match that also may come down to the doubles. (Update: Switzerland beat Germany 2/1; it did go to the doubles. When I left Netherlands and France had just split the deciding doubles as well. Update; France completed the upset 2/1, winning the third set of the doubles 64.

    In the Connolly Cup, USA plays Australia. That’s going to be a tough tie…if we finish early enough I’ll try and catch the end of it, but we don’t usually finish very early.

    In the Bueno Cup, USA is playing its last round robin match today, and if they win, they have a bye tomorrow. Update: USA Bueno Cup team beat Germany 3/0. USA has a bye tomorrow.

    The Men’s 55 have advanced to the quarter finals tomorrow and have a day off today; the men’s 50 and 60 play their last round robin matches today. They are playing at venues far away from here, especially the 50s and 60s, so I don’t have photos. However we do all get together tomorrow at the Gala Dinner so I’ll try and get at least some team photos then and upload them over the weekend.

    Sherri, Tina, Wendy and I practiced on indoor clay today for a couple of hours. It was so nice to get out of the wind! We watched some of France/Netherlands and then I got going on my bike as the weather looked wet, and it was misting all the way home. France ended up winning 64 in the third, so they play Great Britain tomorrow. I think that tie will go down to the doubles.

    Other USA results from Wednesday, late update:

    USA Von Cramm Cup team beat South Africa 3/0 to advance to the knockout part of the Cup. Chris Bennett at #2 and Bill Ashley at #1 both won, Ashley in three sets; Tom Smith and Paul Wulf took the doubles point. They are in the playoff group 1-6 and as second seeds have a bye tomorrow.

    USA Austria Cup, Men’s 55, Connolly Cup, Women’s 55,  and Alice Marble Cup, Women’s 60 advanced to the knockout rounds yesterday.

    USA’s Fred Perry Cup team, men’s 50, seeded 5th, took out Estonia yesterday 3/0 and Chile today also 3/0 to advance to the quarterfinals of the knockout draw. Kelly Ward, #2, Mitch Perkins, #1 and Doug Elly/Ken White had no problems today, dropping no more than three games a match. They are now in playoff group 1-7. They play #4 seeded Austria tomorrow.

    USA Bueno Cup beat Germany 3/0.

  • USA Goes Undefeated on Day One of Seniors Team Championships in France

    There were three USA teams in action today, the Maureen Connolly, Alice Marble and Austria Cups and all won today. The Connolly Cup beat Canada 3/0 with the only “upset” being that Canada’s #1, Erin Boynton used her big serve to power her to a first set win over Diane Barker at #1 singles…but Barker was stingy with games the next two sets winning them 2, 1. Wright won at #2 and Kathy Vick/Ann Pellow (Pellow making her Cup debut) won the doubles point. For more on the Connolly cup click here: http://www.itftennis.com/news/206667.aspx

    It was WINDY today! There was more clay on the players and their belongings at the end of the day than on the courts I think…the courts now resemble red hard courts and play much like them, only higher bouncing. At one point Vick said they couldn’t see their opponents it was so dusty! And it’s supposed to be worse tomorrow.

    In the Marble Cup, Wendy McColskey had a smooth and uneventful Cup debut, winning at #2 61 62 behind powerful forehands and effective dropshots. Tina Karwasky was ruthless at #1, winning 60 60 in about half an hour. Sherri Bronson and I won the doubles point 61 63.

    The men’s 50/60s teams, Fred Perry and Von Cramm, had byes as did the women’s 50s, the Bueno Cup.

    I am not sure if the Austria Cup, Men’s 55 played today but if they did, they won. Internet here has slowed to not working! Photos below from Marble Cup today.

    Update 6/10/15: USA beat Moldovia 3/0 in the Austria Cup, play Belgium next.

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  • Wednesday: 2nd Update; USA Advances into Medal Play in Young Cup

    USA fell in the Men’s & Women’s 35,  & 45, (Men’s 40 lost on Monday); the Young Cup advanced to the medal round. All teams will continue playing this week. USA lost 3/0 in the Italia, Lenglen and Court Cups. All teams put in a great effort, but had tough opponents including the slow red clay in Turkey. 


  • Onto the Individuals

    The individual world championships began on Sunday for the main draw. All the men’s 45, 50 and 55 players played and all the 35 and 40s men without byes. The mixed also started yesterday. Today all the women’s divisions begin play.

    Yesterday, Sunday,My doubles partner, Pam Cooke, and I practiced in the early afternoon with Tracy Houk from the 50s team and Anne Kerwin-Payne from NorCal, her doubles partner.

    In the late afternoon we went to the opening ceremony. It was Pam’s first opening ceremony. It was different from any opening ceremony I’d been to in past championships. It was in the middle of the Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens. Food from sponsors, Brio and PF Changs was set up around the perimeter. Players chatted and ate, then volunteers carrying flags of participating countries (over 50 nations this week) walked quickly past, there were some speeches and a raffle and it was over.

    I got a bye in singles and doubles. I think I will play singles tomorrow and doubles on Wednesday. The draw is very tough, but that’s why we play this event!

    It’s still very very warm and muggy here.


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  • USA Wins Dubler Cup and Finishes Second in Austria & Bueno Cups Saturday

    USA won the Dubler Cup, men’s 45, in dramatic fashion against top-seeded France. Oren Motevassel won the critical #2 singles point in three sets. Jeff Tarango fell to the French #1 in straight sets. That left it to the doubles, late in the day to decide the Cup. Art Hernandez and Mario Tabares took the court for the doubles and dropped the first set 76, battled back to win the second and then fought hard to win the third 64, urged on by the cheers of the Margaret Court Cup team.

    USA dropped the singles against Australia in the Austria Cup and against France in the Bueno Cup.

    USA finished fourth in the Young and Perry Cups.

    Below, Brad Sprayberry captured the winning moment; Mario Tabares, fist raised, Art Hernandez pure joy.

    Dubler Cup winning moment, joy

  • Bueno Cup Blog: USA Finishes Second to France in Cup

    By Tracy Houk

    Today we played France in the finals, and lost, 2-0, both our singles, so they don’t play the doubles. Fran, played at #2 singles, and played the first 2 sets tough. She lost the first set, 6-4, and battled her way back in the second, to take it 7-5. I had to leave and cool off with a shower and get ready for the next singles match, after the third set was played. Yesterday against Italy, I stayed during Fran’s 3 1/2 hour match and I came up flat, when I went on. So, today, I tried to get myself ready. I heard Fran was up 2-1 in the third , and I was getting ready to go up next

    When I heard the news, that France won 6-2. I got out on the back courts for a quick warmup with Gee Gee Garvin, from the USA 35 Team,  Suzanne Lenglen. The day was pretty warm and very humid. We started our match with service breaks, and as the points got longer, I felt like I had a chance to move her around and tire her out. Unfortunately, a couple points got away from me, and I lost the first set 6-3. But, I was moving well,

    And she was starting to tire. We were battling back and fourth, I went down 2-0 on the second, but ran down some shots, that turned it around for me to go up 3-2, and I could see that she was fading with the heat. I was making her hit a lot of balls, and she was starting to miss. I felt the momentum change in my favor, but, a few loose points got her back in, and she went for some big shots and made them. We were tied at 4-4, and I was up 40-15, and lost that game for her to serve for the match. She went up 40-0, and I dig deep to get it to 40-30. We had a long rally, she dropshot me, I ran it down, hit it deep in the corner, she lobs, I’m running back for it, wind blowing against me, I thought it would go deep, it drops in, and there goes theatch, and the title. Remember, next time. When in doubt, HIT IT !!!!!!!! It was a tough loss, but Team Maria Bueno played tough all week ! I couldn’t be more proud, to be on this team, and have such great fighters and team spirit. Best teammates ever !!!

    Thank you, Fran Chandler, Vicki Buholz and Judy Newman. Good luck at Imdividuals. See you there !!!

  • USA Margaret Court Cup Team Beats France to Win Cup!

    Special to Senior Tennis Blog by Alissa Finerman

    Team USA women’s 45 showed up ready to play against France for the Margaret Court Cup Finals at the Polo Club in Boca Raton. We were assigned to center court and we had a good crowd watching for each match. The weather all week was hot and humid and today was no different. Jenny Klitch from Florida played #2 singles against Marie-Dominique Larras from France. Although it was a hard fought and long first set France won the match 7-5 6-2 in just over 2 hours.

    Our #1 singles player Jolene Watanabe, from South Carolina, played a very tough match and executed her shots incredibly well against Virginie Buisson. Jolene needed almost 2 1/2 hours to win the match in two very close sets 7-5 7-5 and even the overall match score at 1-1.

    It was time for a doubles showdown to add even more excitement to an already great day of tennis. Jolene was feeling strong after her singles win and teamed up with doubles specialist Alissa Finerman, from California, to win the doubles point for team USA. Alissa and Jolene started off strong and broke France’s serve to take an early lead 1-0. They never looked back and won the first set 6-0. They closed out the match by breaking serve again and winning the second set 6-3.

    Shelly Works, Texas,  was a supportive, wonderful captain all day, sitting on the court in the sun for both long singles matches before Jenny Klitch relieved her for the doubles match and was extremely helpful to us in the doubles, both with strategy and with helping to keep our intensity up.

    The USA last won the Court Cup in 2010 in Mexico City.

    The medal ceremony is today at the conclusion of the men’s 45 (Dubler Cup final, featuring the USA) final.

    It was a very special day and we are incredibly grateful for all the support during the week. Go USA!

    Court Cup Final 1 Court Cup Final 2 Court Cup Final 3 Court Cup Final

  • Bueno Cup Blog Saturday Morning: USA Plays #2 France in Final Saturday

    Friday, April 25

    Today started off a bit rough, in our semi final march against Italy. Fran Chandler started out the matches, with a 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 win. 

    She started cramping at 4-2 in the second, and the gal picked it up a bit, with some fantastic dropshots. Fran had to call the trainer in the third, and he worked his magic hands during a changeover   ….. Let’s just say, it worked.

    Bueno v Italy, Fran

    I then had to jump on the court after that 3 1/2 match. It was tough to get started, from sitting around, and the girl took full advantage . I lost 6-3, 6-2.

    Bueno v Italy, Tracy

    So it was up to our doubles team of Judy Newman and Vicki Buholz to put us into the final. And they did it! Judy and Vicki

    took the court for the win, 6-4, 7-5. They started off strong, and went up 4-1 in the first. Judy, was hitting blistering returns at the net girl, so they changed their strategy, and they both played back, on serve and return of serves, which gave our team a whole new look, and they came back 4-4. But, Judy and Vicki adjusted, and pulled it out.

    The second set, the Italians came back very strong, and got ahead 4-2, with great lobs and passing shots. Again, our girls rallied back, and came in charging, hitting great volleys and overheads . What a great Team effort. I couldn’t be more proud, of my teammates, and how we all rallied together. Thank you everyone who has been sending out good luck wishes. We hope to bring back the Championship again !!

    Bueno v Italy all

  • USA Wins Connolly and Court Cups Friday: Into the Bueno, Austria & Dubler Finals!

    Updated Saturday Morning (see below) 

    USA Connolly Cup beat GBR in a long match; we started play at 11:30 and it was already hot and muggy, a summer Florida day in April. We finished a little after 6pm with a victory and in between there was a lot of running and sweating and watching and coaching.

    Susan Wright took on Chris French, an accomplished player and won the first set 61. She led 42 when a combination of Chris’ fine play, the heat and the length of the match took its toll and Chris rebounded to win the final sets 64 63. So USA was down 1/0 to start the day, a rare occurrence.

    Diane Barker took the court against the British #1, Anthea Stewart and played a brilliant match! She took away any though of moonballing by Anthea by taking the ball out of the air and angling the volley when Anthea lifted the ball. Diane played her game and won 61 63; she even hit an ace when serving for the match.

    After a 30 minute break, Susan and Tina Karwasky took the court against Sue Bartlett/Ann Clark. They started strongly, going up 4/0, the Brits rallied to 4-5 and Susan served it out. Tina and Susan won the second set 62 to give the USA the Connolly Cup for the 8th straight year!

    I didn’t play yesterday, but was taking photos, on the court coaching (or staying out of their way!) and cheering. It was so hot and I felt as if I’d played a match by the end of the day.

    The Court Cup team also had to come from behind to win their Cup, with Jolene Watanabe accounting for the singles point at #1 and the doubles point (with Alissa Finerman). For more on the Court Cup, click here.

    The Bueno Cup team won at #2 singles and doubles. For more on the Bueno Cup, click here.

    Saturday Update:

    Lenglen Cup: USA finished ninth, winning both playoff matches (against Argentina and Brazil) after finishing third in its round robin group. Yulia Bolotova at #2 and Fanny Gamble at #1 won the singles and combined to win the doubles point.

    Young Cup: USA fell to Spain 3/0. Florida’s Vesna McKenna, with Julie Cass lost in three sets in the doubles. Patricia Zerdan at #2 and Sophie Woorons-Johnston at #1 lost tough matches in the singles.

    Bueno Cup: USA edged Italy 2/1. Fran Chandler won at #2 singles in three sets, overcoming cramps to win; Tracy Houk, lost at #1 singles and Judy Newman/Vicki Buholz won the doubles point in straight sets. They play France in the final today.

    Italia Cup: The USA lost on Thursday 2/1 to Great Britain (winning the doubles point). Michael Halperin, Boca Raton lost 63 64 at #1 singles. They had the day off yesterday and play #6 seeded Germany for fifth place, a big improvement on the USA’s 17th place finish in 2013.

    Trabert Cup: The USA lost to Italy 2/0 yesterday to finish 7th, also a big improvement over their 13th place finish in 2013.

    Dubler Cup: The USA beat Germany 2/1. Oren Motevassel won at #2 in straight sets; Jeff Tarango won in three sets and Miami’s Mario Tabares/Art Hernandez lost 12-10 in the third set tiebreak in the doubles. The USA plays France in the final today at the Polo Club in Boca Raton.

    Perry Cup: USA fell 2/1 to France in the semis of the Perry Cup, dropping both singles matches  before winning the doubles point. They play #2 seeded Italy for third today.

    Austria Cup: USA beat Mexico 3/0 to advance to the Austria Cup Final against Australia today at PGA National.

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  • USA Teams Advance to Playoffs in Nine Cups

    USA teams successfully upheld their seeds in all but one group at the conclusion of the round robin portion of the team event yesterday (Wednesday).

    The Connolly Cup defeated Netherlands handily; Susan Wright won at #2  63 60; Diane won 60 60 at #1 and Tina (who played fabulously) and I won 61 62 in the doubles. Netherlands played their #1 player in doubles, not singles, so it was a fun match. We play AUSTRALIA TODAY!

    The Trabert Cup, behind the play of Michael Chang at #2, Rick Witsken #1 and Guillaume Gauthier/Willie Quest beat Latvia 3/0. They play GERMANY today, the #3 seeds.

    The Young Cup, behind the play of Patricia Zerdan #2, Sophie Woorons-Johnston #1 and Julie Cass/Woorons-Johnston, avenged their 2013 defeat by Canada, winning 3/0. They play top seeded Spain next. Hollywood’s Vesna McKenna is the fourth member of this team.

    Margaret Court Cup: The USA Court Cup team had the most dramatic win of the day. They played Netherlands. USA won the first three sets of the tie before rallying. Jenny Klitch (Palm Beach Gardens) lost a long two set match at #2; Jolene Watanabe at #1 lost the first set 76 before wearing out her opponent 63 63 in the final sets. Jolene said that the heat worked in her favor as the match wore on. Jolene and Alissa Finerman took the first set of the doubles 61 but Netherlands led 42 in the second, then USA rallied to win the final four games and the tie 2/1. USA plays Brazil today. USA is seeded #2, Brazil is unseeded.

    Maria Bueno Cup: USA plays the winner of NZL and Italy on Friday; they have the day off today. They are the top seeds and won yesterday easily over Mexico; Fran Chandler played #2; Tracy Houk played #1 and Judy Newman/Vicki Buholz played doubles.

    Lenglen Cup: USA fell 2/1 to Germany yesterday. Gee Gee Garvin won at #2 singles in a 3 1/2 hour match over 2013 year end #1 Stephanie Kolar but Germany’s #1 was amazing; Simona Bruetting, the US #1 said she was schooled at #1 singles and Germany won the doubles point over Gee Gee and Simona in straight sets. USA finished third in their group of four. They will play off for 9th place starting today against Brazil.

    Italia Cup: USA beat Turkey yesterday behind the play of Ross Duncan at #2, Boca Raton’s Michael Halperin at #1 and Jared Jacobs/Mark Tepes in the doubles. They play #4 seeds Gr. Britain today (USA is seeded #5).

    Dubler Cup: USA beat India yesterday with the loss of only two games; Miami’s Mario Tarbares blanked his opponent at #2 singles; Jeff Tarango did the same at #1 and Oren Motevassel/Art Hernandez won 61 61 to complete the sweep. USA plays #7 seeded Argentina today.

    Fred Perry Cup: USA beat Romania 2/1 on Wednesday: Thomas Kong won at #2 easily; Ken White battled hard but fell at #1 singles and Mike Fedderly/Andy Stoner won the doubles handily to clinch the tie. USA, seeded #4, plays #5 seeded Gr. Britain today.

    Austria Cup: USA beat Switzerland 3/0: Mike Tammen won #2 singles; Mark Vines won at #1 and Vines/Wesley Cash took the doubles point, while Danny Waldman, the #1 player on the team rested up for the toughest matches to come. #3 USA plays #6 Germany today.

    For links to the draws (click on the name of the Cup, then “draws” ) click on this link: https://seniortennisblog.com/2014/04/20/draws-for-cups-in-boca-raton-and-palm-beach-gardens-florida/

    For photos, click here: https://picasaweb.google.com/111133686884013323699/2014SeniorWorldChampionshipsFlorida#

    Update: Got my new phone yesterday. :-).

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  • USA Connolly Cup Team Into the Semis

    The USA Connolly Cup team beat Netherlands today 3/0. Susan started us off with a convincing 63 60 win. Diane then won 60 60 at #1. After a brief delay Tina and I won the doubles 61 62.

    The Tony Trabert Cup team also won 3/0 against Latvia. Michael Chang won at #2; Rick Witsken won at #1 and Guillaume Gauthier/Willie Quest won the the doubles point.

    USA Young Cup won too.

    I’m off to the player dinner, will have another update tomorrow morning.

  • Tracy Houk Blog April 22, 2014

    A great day for Team Maria Bueno !!

    After a Starbucks run, ( gotta have my Latte ) and breakfast. We headed out to Boca West CC for a team practice at 7:30am. After, I picked up my racket, that was strung up and ready to go. We headed back to the Hotel, to pack up for the day, and our first match against Canada. I had to turn in our roster before 10am, then we had another hit before our 11:30 start. Fran played first, at #2 singles, with me sitting on the bench, for support and any helpful tips. She won 6-0, 6-4. She played a flawless first set, but her opponent came on strong in the second, and Fran was down 1-3, quickly. But, Fran dug deep and rallied back to take the second in a tight finish. After the courts were swept, I played the next singles match at #1, with Fran on the bench for me. I won 6-2, 6-3, in a long match that was filled with long points, drop shots, and angles. It was a tough match to start the competition for me. Judy and Vicki closed the deal in doubles, 6-1,6-1 for a 3-0 sweep. We play Mexico tomorrow. And our day will start pretty much the same as today, and hopefully finish with a win. Did you see Spangles on the court? Doing  laundry now. So, talk to you all tomorrow !!!

    USA vs Canada Bueno Cup

  • All USA Teams Win in Florida Tuesday

    USA Connolly Cup team blanked Turkey today at BallenIsles, winning each match 60 60. Diane Barker played #1 singles, Susan Wright played #2 singles and Carolyn Nichols/Tina Karwasky played the doubles. After the match we had some doubles practice which was fun.

    The day started early because I hit from 7-8:30 with my doubles partner for next week, Pam Cooke. The Canadians, who had the day off from team competition, also hit the courts early.

    We warmed up at 10:50-11:10 and started play about 11:30. We played on Court 15, a middle court in the back, but tomorrow, against the Netherlands we play on Center Court.

    The USA men playing at BallenIsles (Trabert Cup, 40s) had a tough match against Finland but won both singles. At #2 singles, Willie Quest won the first set and rallied from 2-5 down in the second to win it 7-5. He was really fired up to win it for the USA. Guillaume Gauthier clinched the tie for the USA.

    The only negative on the day was discovering that my phone was in my cooler at the end of the day; under my sandwich container and soaking in an ice bath. Good by phone!   (I had put it in there when the cooler was empty of liquids)

    Other USA results:

    Lenglen Cup: USA d. Sweden 3/0. They have a tough match tomorrow with Germany, who has last year’s world #1 at #2 singles.

    Young Cup: USA d. Sweden 3/0. USA won both singles easily but had a tussle in the doubles, winning in three.   Vesna McKenna paired with Julie Cass to win the doubles point.

    Margaret Court Cup: USA d. Turkey 3/0 (lost 5 games). They play Netherlands tomorrow.  Jenny Klitch played #2 singles, making her Cup debut and won 61 61.

    Maria Bueno Cup: USA d. Canada 3/0 and play Mexico tomorrow.

    Italia Cup: USA beat Australia 3/0 and play Turkey tomorrow. 

    Dubler Cup: USA beat Russia 3/0. 

    Fred Perry Cup: USA beat Canada 3/0.

    Austria Cup: USA beat Finland 3/0.


    can with flagUSA Connolly Cup v Turkey