Rob Fahey takes on Rackets - and wins!

04 Oct 2010

World Real Tennis Champion Rob Fahey Rackets Challenge

On the 14th of October 2010 at The Queen�s Club, Real Tennis met Rackets as the 10 time World Real Tennis Champion Rob Fahey was challenged to face Queen�s Club Rackets aficionado Alastair Gourlay for £500 in a best of five game Rackets extravaganza with only 10 hours of practice, all in aid of the Real Tennis and Rackets Young Professionals fund.

The galleries were packed, the crowd eagerly awaiting the start of the match. Would Rob after just 10 hours of practice be able to contain Alastair�s ferocious serving and what surely would be better racket and court skills? ��

The players wait nonchalantly for the introductions to be finished, but perhaps Rob is nervous? ��
According to a member of the Queen�s staff there were more spectators at this match than at a major rackets event (excluding the World Racket Championships) ��
Alastair�s serve in the first set had Rob flummoxed, but he soon started to copy it with astonishing results! ��
How many RT players come out from a long rest winning the point against Rob?� You would have thought in a rackets match the more experienced play would win - an emphatic �No� can be the response to this. Rob just covered the court, and made the �killer� shot as soon as he could. ��
A few calls were queried by Fahey, in a most sportsmanlike fashion of course but the face tells it all.��
In the fourth set the score went to 13 all and Alastair opted to play 3 points.� It was very exciting and Rob never had a match point in this set. ��
The last set was touch and go and Drew told me �you can never have too large a lead in this game�.� Alastair was 9-5 up, but Rob clawed it back to level and then Alastair only won 2 more points with Rob never falling behind again. ��

The final score was

10/15 15/6 15/11 13/16 15/11

Rob�s face by the end of the match was the colour of the court!

A quite extraordinary feat, but should we be surprised?

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