Brits shine on British Tour
There’s been British success across the board at the most recent LTA Padel British Tour Grade 1 tournaments at Guernsey Padel Club and Stratford Padel Club, London, with Brit pairs claiming titles in both the men’s and women’s competitions. The Bandeja reports
Guernsey hosted the fourth of seven Grade 1 events in England, Scotland and the Channel Islands as part of the 2023 British Tour, which encompasses the top padel competitions in the UK. With six of UK’s top ten men and five of the top ten women competing for the £3,500 prize fund, the standard of padel was extremely high.
There was British success across the men’s and women’s competitions with Frankie Langan and Sam MacNeil lifting the title in the men’s, and new GB No 1 Aimee Gibson and Catherine Rose succeeding in the women’s side of the draw.
The men’s final saw second seeds Frankie and Sam defeat top seeds’ Chris Salisbury and Rafael Vega Otaolaurruchi 7-5, 6-4. Post match, Frankie reflected on the match: “I’m really pleased with how I played today and it’s great to get the win, especially in front of such a big crowd – definitely one of the biggest we have seen at an LTA padel event. It’s been a great weekend in Guernsey – my first time on the island and I’ll be back for soon for sure.”
In the women’s event, it was the top two seeded pairings who again reached the final with Aimee Gibson and Catherine Rose defeating Helen Crook and former British tennis player Jo Ward 6-0, 6-1. Speaking of her win, Aimee said: “Guernsey it is so nice, the courts are great and the draws are so busy. Some weeks you don’t get that many women entering so it’s nice to see lots of people playing.”
Sara Woolland, Guernsey Padel Club Tournament Director said: “It was wonderful to see the club so buzzing over the bank holiday weekend with hundreds of spectators turning out to watch the best UK players taking on our own local members and players. We are already looking forward to welcoming many of them back soon, either for friendlies, coaching weekends or more LTA events.”
Jones & Harris headline
There was further British success in the Tour Grade 1 at Stratford Padel Club, London, with British pairs claiming titles in both the men’s and women’s competitions.
British No 2 and No 3 ranked players respectively Sam Jones and Louie Harris saw off their Spanish opponents with a comprehensive 6-2 6-4 victory in the men’s final. The victorious pair said: “Great experience to play against players from Spain. Fantastic final, always great to come back to London to play and to come up with a win makes it so much better!”
Meanwhile, No 2 seeded pair Victoria Nicholas and Claire Smith set up an all-British final against Sophia Haine and Lisa Phillips, coming through 6-4 6-3 to take the title. Speaking afterwards the pair said: “The final was really fun, really close. The level is improving, with new faces coming up at every tournament, which is great for the sport.” 🎾