Nature Valley International – marvellous Monday
The tension is building steadily as the first round matches yesterday saw high-ranking players ascend convincingly to the second round of the Nature Valley International tennis at Devonshire Park.
Once again our Eastbourne College ball crew members worked alongside Cavendish and Roedean Moira House to provide a professional service to the pros.
Antoinette and Emily were on centre court late yesterday as defending champion Caroline Wozniacki’s match against Kirsten Flipkens (singles ranking 81) was pushed back due to light rain earlier in the day. Despite a determined effort from Flipkens (whose doubles ranking is 26 in the world), the popular Dane cruised through in straight sets (6-3, 6-4) and will go on to play German Andrea Petkovic later today on court 2. Petkovic had a tough time on Sunday, eventually beating Daria Kasatkina in two sets to one (5-7, 6-4, 6-2).
Spectators who had their tennis radars working well yesterday would have caught a glimpse of Andy Murray warming up with his new doubles partner Marcelo Melo. Murray comes to Eastbourne fresh from a convincing win at the Fever-Tree Championships, Queen’s Club, where Spaniard Feliciano Lopez aided a romping victory and a big ‘welcome back Andy!’ from the overjoyed British public. Looking focused and relaxed considering recent surgery for his hip pain, Murray joins high-ranking doubles specialist Melo playing on centre court at around 4.00pm this afternoon.
Other members of our ball crew team were on duty yesterday, including Max, Olivia , Emma and Will looking after Lesia Tsurenko (singles ranking 33) and Zarina Diyas (singles ranking 89), both hard-hitting players who had play suspended yesterday with Ukranian Tsurenko one set up and Kazakhstani Diyas trailing by three games in the second set.
Truly an international gathering here at the Nature Valley International and with the weather improving as the week goes on, there’s plenty of top-class tennis to come.