The finals of the Colchester & District Friendly Tennis League individual tournament were held on the Phoenix courts this year and proved to be a very exciting day. The strong wind made conditions very difficult and 4 of the 7 finals went to 3 sets.
The Men's Doubles was an all-Colchester LTC affair, with Colin Young and David Ford retaining the title over Andrew Simpson and Mike Cura 6-3 6-1.
The Mixed Doubles was another retained title. However, Helen Warburton and Rob Hazelton of Ardleigh lost the first set 3-6 to Gerry Owens and Vic Little of Colchester. They then came back to take the next two sets 6-4 6- 3.
In the Ladies Doubles, current titleholders Helen Warburton and Shirley Haxell of Ardleigh won the first set over Jenny Price and Gerry Owens of Colchester before the Colchester pair rallied to take the second set. A close third set eventually went to the Ardleigh pair, giving them the title for the third time. The final score was 6-3 2-6 7-5.
In the Veteran Mixed Doubles, current titleholders Kathy and Bob Salmon of Colchester also had a tight match against club mates Janet Davies and Vic Little. They won the first set 6-4 but lost the second by the same score. However, they battled on to take the title for the third time with a 7-5 win in the third.
In the Men's Singles young Tom Salmon of Colchester took an early lead over Malcolm Barclay of Ardleigh before the Ardleigh player levelled the score at 5-5. The Colchester player then settled down to take the first set 7-5 and the second set 6-2.
The Boys Singles this year was between brothers Daniel and Adam Lane of West End. A high standard of play resulted in the title going to Daniel 6- 1 6-2.
The surprise of the day was the final match, the Veteran Ladies Doubles between current titleholders Kathy Salmon and Linda Parkins of Colchester and Ann Dunnell with new partner Florence Cooper of Phoenix. A close match throughout, the Phoenix pair managed to take the first set 7-5 before the holders came back to take the second by the same score. The decider ended 6-4 for the Phoenix pair, making them the new champions.
League Chairman, John Sambrook, presented trophies to the winners and runners-up. He had umpired two matches himself but thanked Chris Jones, David Jones, Andrew Simpson and Roger Payne who had also acted as umpires, Gerry Owens the Tournament Secretary, and Don Rampling who had arranged the trophies. He also presented shields to Colchester who had won the Men's Division and to Little Clacton who won both the Ladies and the Mixed Divisions.
Boys singles finalists
Adam Lane and Daniel Lane (winner)
(both West End)
Mens singles finalists
Malcolm Barclay (Ardleigh); Tom Salmon (Colchester LTC) (winner)
Mens doubles winners
David Ford and Colin Young (Colchester LTC)
Mixed doubles winner
Rob Hazelton (Ardleigh)
Veteran ladies doubles finalists
Ann Dunnell & Florence Cooper (Phoenix) (winners); Kathy Salmon & Linda Parkins (Colchester LTC)
Veteran mixed doubles winners
Bob and Kathy Salmon (Colchester LTC)
The AGM was held on Monday 5th April 2004. The following clubs have affiliated to the Friendly League for the 2004 season and have entered the following teams:
|Colchester LTC:  ||Ladies Team, Mens Team, Two Mixed Teams|
|Dedham:  ||Ladies Team (2-pair)|
|Dovercourt:  ||Mixed Team|
|Little Clacton:  ||Ladies Team (2-pair), Mens Team, Mixed Team|
|Maldon:  ||Mens Team (2-pair)|
|Phoenix:  ||Ladies Team, Mens Team, Mixed Team|
|West Mersea:  ||Mixed Team|
|Wivenhoe:  ||Ladies Team, Mens Team|
The Cosmopolitan and Stanway Clubs have amalgamated to form the Colchester Lawn Tennis Club. The new club still plays at the West End Sports Ground in Eudo Road.
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