Lady Captain report AGM
Dee Cohen 2019
I am pleased to present my first report as ladies captain of the tennis section and I would like to thank our previous lady captain, Joan Roy, for all her hard work before me.
The ladies’ section continues to thrive with a busy schedule of matches, team practice sessions and social play. Our active coaching programme continues for players at all levels and is now being extended to offer sessions to lady golfers. The mixing and integration of different lady members is very positive and I hope this will continue
Our membership drive following the reduction to tennis membership fees has been extremely successful and we have now exceeded our forecast contribution to MPGC.
Many of our activities are aimed at improving members enjoyment of the club and the quality of our facilities, particularly the grass courts, have been greatly appreciated.
At the end of 2018 we performed a review of the tennis section as a contribution to the strategic review being done by the board on the future direction of MPGC. This review highlighted a worrying trend of declining tennis membership and falling revenue. It was felt that if this was allowed to continue the existence of the tennis section would be at risk. The recommendation was to reduce the tennis membership fees significantly to bring them into line with the market and by doing this stimulate a growth in membership. We are very grateful that the board accepted our proposal and due to the considerable work of the committee, tennis members and coaches we are now able to show a reversal of this previous decline.
In the first 3 months of this financial year (to 5th August) we have achieved 46 new members, 14 adult members and 32 juniors. However, there is a high churn rate in the membership and we experienced 25 resignations in May (mostly juniors) and a number of changes to membership category. A positive contribution to MPGC revenues was achieved from summer members upgrading to full and we also gained members from golfers changing to tennis.
Due to the high churn rate in membership, for revenue purposes MPGC reports 19 new tennis members for the first 3 months of the year to the end of May. This is a very positive result and we expect to finish the year in a healthy position, well ahead of our forecast plan.
Our membership drive has involved contributions from many. Notable successes include the friendly tournament organised by Vivien Mrowiec and Jane Tweedie where Middlesex players were invited to Moor Park. This resulted in a number of new members joining so they could also play in Hertfordshire leagues.
We have also advertised in libraries, gyms and e-mailed Moor Park 1958 residents with invitations to visit the club. Additionally, we have updated the web site and hosted a Nature
Valley LTA open day to generate new members. Special thanks to all committee members for help with this, in particular Joan Roy, Carey Philpott, Annick Devillard.
Our new system of allocating guest passes to members has also been extremely effective in helping to recruit new members and I would like to thank Amy our CEO and MPGC for their support with this. Many of our new adult full members have been introduced by existing members and guest passes are very useful in facilitating this process. They also encourage members to enjoy the club by bringing guests and family to play tennis.
There has been a notable improvement this year in the quality of our grass courts which look magnificent and all 7 courts are playing very well, enhancing members experience of tennis at Moor Park. I would like to thank our excellent maintenance team, particularly Nick Cracknell and John Broom for all their hard work.
We have introduced group coaching sessions on Monday mornings with Anjan Chowdhury and Thursday afternoons with Nigel Buckman. Pierre Cladd also runs Monday morning coaching for social players and Oliver Webb offers group lessons to some of our golf ladies. We continue with social tennis on Wednesday evening and Saturday afternoon and have trialed a Sunday afternoon social session. We have also introduced box leagues for all players run by Nigel Buckman and started a mixed group of team-level players on Tuesday evenings for structured team play, initiated by Vivien Mrowiec and Jane Tweedie.
Team match progress
Our ladies have been extremely active competing in Hertfordshire county league matches, charity leagues and friendly matches.
We have finished top of the intermediate division of this league with 6 wins out of 6 and have now gained promotion to the Premier division next year.
This league is quite demanding with long matches where there are 3 rounds to play, each being the best of three sets. The fitness of our players is tested but also their commitment as many of the matches are located all over Hertfordshire. Two of our juniors (Jemma and Cassie) have also made a great contribution to this team performing well and showing great maturity.
Thanks go to Jane Tweedie who has expertly captained this team of 12 ladies: Fiona Blackwell, Sue Buckman, Jemma Cole, Wendy Driver, Hazel Elliott, Cassie Emmanuel, Tracey Holden, Mary Long, Marianne Montgomery, Naoko Sawada, Vivien Mrowiec and Jane Tweedie.
Congratulations ladies, this is a great result!
Inaugural Herts Harris cup
This is a new league for us and is a two pair knock out competition where we are encouraged to include juniors in the team. So far, we have won our first match and look forward to continued successes.
We finished top of Division 2A in this league and have won promotion to Division 1B. 7 matches were played and we won 6.
The format for this league is ladies’ doubles with teams of 4 players. Matches are the best of
3 sets with 2 rounds of 2 rubbers.
Thanks to Vivien Mrowiec for captaining this team of 10 ladies: Naoko Sawada, Fiona Blackwell, Wendy driver, Mary Long, Claire Fellowes, Cassie Emmanuel, Arushi De, Marianne Montgomery, Jane Tweedie and Vivien Mrowiec.
Special mention to our two junior players Cassie and Arushi who played with great maturity and we look forward to seeing more of them in our teams in the future.
Watford and District (mixed doubles), Division 2
Mary Long continues to expertly organise our mixed team in this league. We have won two of our matches but next year will compete in a lower division and hope to get more adult male players involved in these matches.
Hatch End Charity league
Our intermediate ladies put up a fine performance in this league and we have now been promoted to division 3.
Dee Cohen captained this team of 12 ladies: Annick Devillard, Carey Philpott, Meg Kelly, Heather Benjamin, Gillian Kolesnikow, Gaynor Turner, Stephanie Walters, Katie Naylor, Tracey Holden, Sue Boultbee, Sarah Starr, Dee Cohen
Riverside Charity league
This league is about to start for the autumn season and team entry is due to be submitted.
We have run a number of grass court friendly matches over the summer period and have invited local clubs from Virgin Active Riverside, Hatch End and Northwood for competitive tennis followed by lunch. We also played away at Stoke Park, experiencing some great tennis on their grass courts used for the pre-Wimbledon Boodles competition. We felt our grass courts were better but to be fair Novak Djokovic’s serve is probably a bit harder than Moor Park players!
We have arranged a number of ladies’ internal tournaments including a successful Spritzer tournament and actively participate in other club tournaments including the captains’ tournament, handicapped tournaments and others.
I would like to thank all lady members for their support in my first year. With the continued support of the board, our great committee and coaching team I have high hopes that we will continue to enjoy great tennis at Moor Park.
I would also like to remind all ladies about our tennis dinner and jazz evening on Saturday 12th October and our annual Christmas lunch on Thursday 5th December to start off the Christmas festivities in style!
Look forward to seeing you on court soon, Best regards,