DFTC Trip to the Eastbourne Tennis – Part 2
First Day by Lesley
The minibus collected eleven DFTC members from the Bristol Golf Centre at 9.30am. We chatted and laughed to our first comfort stop and then chatted and drank prosecco to the second stop where we had our packed lunches. We were having so much fun the driver had to remind us that there was still a long journey ahead so we laughed and chatted back onto the mini bus and all the way to Eastbourne in a haze of fun.
The hotel was central so once we’d checked in we headed for the beach. Some of us jumped on the open top bus tour and arrived at beautiful Beachy Head with its chalky cliffs and milky sea and the magnificent South Downs was a feast for the eyes.
We had our evening meal in a pre booked Italian Restaurant surrounded by famous tennis players and broadcasters. The following morning we met over breakfast and then walked to Rothesay International Tennis Championship. The joy and anticipation was palpable amongst our tennis club women. Famous athletes were warming up on the outside courts and we all beamed at one another as we arrived at our Centre Court seats in the bright sunshine, wearing the latest fashion in sun hats. Once we became overheated we hoped our seats would soon be in the shade. But when that happened we began to feel the cool sea breeze and re-established ourselves in sunnier seats before we turned to ice!
The tennis was outstanding and atmosphere very friendly and happy. The weather was beautiful, full of sea air and sunshine but we had dressed for hot summer days and often felt cold.
At the end of the day some of us went into lots of packed restaurants but were disappointed that we were turned away but eventually found an Italian Restaurant let us eat together. Again we laughed, chatted, and all agreed that we’d had a fun filled experience.
Second Day by Helen
It was great to be able to go to the tennis for a second day and wander round the outside courts and relax in the grounds. Watching the tennis being played on the outside courts means you can get up really close to the players and really see the awesome tennis, the speed of the shots, the speed of the players, the tactics and the atmosphere. Just standing there in the passageways between the courts means that famous players, or past players can just walk past you and you could have a chat but I was too shy to start up a conversation. Everyone was so friendly it should have been easy.
I tried to watch the players coming out or going in to the changing rooms but there was not much activity and so I wandered round and watched the players on the practice courts. I saw Garbine Muguruza play with Heather Watson; we had seen Garbine and her coach Conchita Martinez on the first night at the restaurant. Then I saw Serena Williams start to warm up with her doubles partner, Ons Jabeur. Serena was competing in the doubles at Eastbourne in preparation for her singles comeback at Wimbledon.
I sat on the grass with my coffee and lunch to watch the big screen and saw Ryan Peniston win his match on centre court and then we had to leave to come home. It was all very exciting and I would love to go again.