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The Billy Ross Skinner - LRTA Mixed Doubles Invitational 2024

Billy Ross Skinner 2024 Report

Once again Hatfield played host to the Billy Ross Skinner Invitational Mixed Doubles sponsored by Jesters & The Dedanists Foundation and as ever it was full of very close fought matches that generally went down to the wire!

The Billy Ross Skinner is an invitational event where the top 16 ladies available are paired with men of similar handicaps to try to give every pair an equal chance of winning. This year was no exception with lots of close matches, all played in a great spirit, with a really great atmosphere around the Club. The early rounds are played to a repechage format which means each pair can lose a match but still progress and interestingly this year it was the runner up in each group that actually ended up winning their Quarter-Final match to progress on the Sunday.

This year the level was particularly high throughout the group stage and knockout rounds, with many 5/5 sets and 40-all games, keeping the spectators on the edge of their seats!

This year’s final was between Alex Brodie & Oskar Knötschke vs Nicola Doble & Grant Miller and it did not disappoint. Alex and Oskar came flying out the blocks and taking the first set 6/0, before Grant and Nicola tactically switched the return of serve and managed to get a foothold in the match. Trading games in a very tight 2nd set, it was Grant and Nicola that edged it 6/4 to set up a 3/3 final set finale! To the surprise of no-one who had been watching, the final set was to go the distance and we found ourselves at 5/5 40-all, going down to the final point and it was Nicola Doble & Grant Miller who managed to be crowned the 2024 Billy Ross Skinner champions!

Thank you to everyone who competed this year in great spirits and showcasing some top-level doubles throughout the event. Huge praise and thanks must go to the tournament organisers, Clare Bucknell & Paul Bollerman, whose hard work, planning and matchmaking has brought a new vibrancy to an already very popular event and the addition of social events on the Friday and Saturday evenings have definitely added another dimension! Also a big thanks to Sarah Sullivan & Liz Fisher for looking after all the players throughout the week and putting on a fantastic spread to keep the players and markers well fuelled throughout the tournament! Thank you, also, to Ben Geytenbeek for his continued support with the streaming of events like this and the fantastic addition of his marking app and scoreboard in this year’s footage!


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