Cattermull Cup (Handicap Alumni Tournament) 2023
Apr 21, 2023 - Apr 23, 2023 MURTC Paul Cattermull
The Cattermull Cup 2023 took place on the 21st-23rd April at Middlesex University Real Tennis Club
Having moved the date earlier in the calendar year to the Spring in
2023 from the Autumn in 2022 (to avoid clashes with the Brodie, half
term and several other events), two weeks after Easter proved rather
popular with 16 entries this year. We even had the cushion of a
'reserve' pair, who missed the deadline, providing cover in the event
of any drop-outs. As usual, we offered the opportunity for pairs to
'elect' when it was most convenient for them to play with one of the
four groups of four playing on Friday evening and the other three
playing on Saturday. The first pair in each group then qualified, with
both semi-finals and the final played on Sunday; enabling everyone to
get away and beat any traffic home following completion shortly after
The first group was won by The Leys, Cambridge (Humphrey & Spriggs)
who were stand out winners over Worth (Bett & Cattermull) and the two
Charterhouse pairs (Pendrigh & Campione/Wood & Shaw). It was
disappointing for the Charterhouse pairs to find themselves in the
same group but unavoidable due to timing requirements on
the Friday evening.
The second group contained last year's winners Clifton (Liddington &
Esses), but also twice previous finalists Wimbledon High (Doble &
Brodie) as well as competitive pairs from Highgate (Friend & Zundel)
and Shrewsbury (Saunders & Boys-Stones). With 3 teams winning 2
matches each, there was some careful calculation involved following
the first to six game format. Wimbledon High qualified.
The third group contained Winchester 2 (Potter & Millar), Bryanston
(Mallinson & Milton), Tonbridge (Lowres & Dalzell) and our first
Scottish entry from Merchiston Castle (Faulkner & Fleming)! Potter's
experience as a previous winner was an invaluable addition to his drag
backhand serve and calm demeanour as Winchester won through.
The fourth group constituted a regular Marlborough pair (Kerr &
Hewitt), Winchester 1 (Vallat & F. Delaforce), Haileybury (Paxton & S.
Heilpern) and Eton (Swift & D. Delaforce). Well, self-evidently that
was going to give rise to a spicey match between Eton and Winchester
although Delaforce senior was keeping calm by doing the FT crossword.
It reminded us all of Old Rugbians doing The Times one each year in
the Dedans area.
On Sunday, the semi finals were played off a longer set format, first
to nine games. This proved really exciting with the first semi against
Wimbledon High decided by an 8 all 40 all match point, which
Winchester 2 converted. Winchester 1 then overcame a significant
handicap deficit by playing almost error free tennis against The Leys
who with hindsight felt they may have benefitted by going for more
The Final was played first to 10, off a narrow owe ½ 15 handicap.
Felix Delaforce and Richard Vallat really went for their shots
throughout which paid off.
Thanks go to Will Burns for organising and marking. He was ably assisted
Jack Carter allowing him to pick up his family from the airport on
Any amount of publicity should be fed back to alma mater schools for
this tournament as we endeavour to keep the profile of the game, get
new courts built etc. We hope that the beautiful Middlesex University
court can be somehow saved. There is some irony in that the schools
with existing courts (Canford, Oratory, Radley and Wellington) have
been unable to produce a pair over the past couple of years. Perhaps
There is currently no entry form available