The finals of the Cumbria County Closed tournament were held at Carlisle on the evening of 21st January. The Men’s A competition was won by Carlisle’s Paul Bell, who beat Mike Lowrey from Whitehaven in straight sets. This is Paul’s 11th consecutive Cumbria Closed title, and he again showed his exceptional skills and ability to manage the game against a strong field and an excellent opponent in the final.
Victoria Bell, also from Carlisle, beat another Carlisle player, the up and coming Eve Driver, in her final. Like her brother Paul, Victoria has dominated this event for many years, and this is her 9th victory. Despite Eve’s best efforts and some excellent play, Victoria was too strong for her and controlled the game throughout with her excellent technique shining through.
In the B final, Will Box from Carlisle beat Wigton’s George Kemp. Although the scoreline was 3-0 to Will, all of the games were close. The C final was won in 5 sets by Penrith’s Graham Silburn, whose fitness combined with his racket skills showed in the end against Wigton’s Andrew Thwaite.
The plate competitions were won by Keane Appleton (Carlisle), who beat Kendal’s Ben Welton to win the A plate in 5 sets, Windscale’s Brandon Groggins, who played excellently in the B final to beat Carlisle’s Glenn Spary in straight sets, and Adam Gill from Wigton who won 3-1 against Ryan Ballantine (Carlisle) in the C plate final.
Overall the standard of play in all of the tournaments was very strong, and in particular this year has marked the emergence of many younger players.