The Scottish Open Championships at Loretto School, Musselburgh
Saturday-Sunday, 30th April and 1st May 2016
The Scottish Open 2016 demonstrated its international appeal by attracting entrants not only from the traditional Scottish and English powerhouses of Fives but also players from Spain and the United States, writes organiser Neil Roberts. It also showcased the emerging talent in Scottish Fives, with three Edinburgh-based schoolboys, including national schoolboy singles champion Andrew Boyd, performing admirably in the singles, and all four doubles finalists being based north of the border.
In the first round of the singles, Archie McCreath (Fettes College) took tournament organiser Neil Roberts to three games, while Ben Jourdan (Edinburgh Academy) defeated Jez Sinton in three closely contested games. James Tilston beat Alexandra Scott (USA) before losing in three to Andrew Boyd in the quarter finals. Eventually the top two seeds made it through to the final, where Dave Butler defeated local coach Richie Murby 6-11, 11-1, 11-3 to lift the Cuthbertson Quaich singles trophy (albeit with a bit of imagination required here, as the trophy hadn’t actually been returned by last year’s winner Dan Tristao) for the first time. Congratulations to James Tilston for winning the plate competition.
The pairings for the doubles tournament proved to be very well selected with six of the eight matches – including both the final and the plate final – going to three games. Eventually, Jez Sinton & Archie McCreath prevailed (despite losing in the group stages to Adam George & Grant Sperling) to defeat evergreen Caledonian club stalwart Mike Kemp & Edinburgh Academy emerging star Ben Jourdan. In the plate final, Evan Li (Fettes) assisted by Richie Murby defeated Neil Roberts & Enrique Castillo (Spain).
Former RFA President Bob Dolby was present to congratulate the winners on the 50th anniversary of when he first won the Scottish doubles partnering David Hebblethwaite (there was another notable English sporting success in the summer of 1966 but I can’t remember what it was!).
Many thanks must go to Loretto school for allowing their courts and changing facilities to be used for the tournament.
1st round: B.Jourdan bt J.Sinton 11-5, 7-11, 11-3; N.Roberts bt A McCreath 3-11, 11-3, 11-0
Quarter-finals: D.Butler bt M.Kemp 11-2, 11-0; A,Boyd bt J.Tilston 3-11, 11-6, 11-6; A.George bt Jourdan 11-7, 11-7; R.Murby bt Roberts 11-0, 12-10
Semi-finals: Butler bt Boyd 11-3, 11-2; Murby bt George 11-0, 11-1
Final: Butler bt Murby 6-11, 11-1, 11-3
Plate: Tilston bt Roberts 15-6
Pool A: Murby & E.Li bt George & G.Sperling 7-11, 11-6, 11-2; Sinton & McCreath bt Murby & Li 11-8, 11-5; George & Sperling bt Sinton & McCreath 11-9, 7-11, 11-6
Pool B: Kemp & Jourdan bt Roberts & E.Castillo 11-5, 11-5; Roberts & Castillo bt E.Hatton & P.Maddison 12-11, 3-11, 12-11; Kemp & Jourdan bt Hatton & Maddison 11-8, 3-11, 11-1
Final: Sinton & McCreath bt Kemp & Jourdan 11-7, 3-11, 11-7
Plate: Murby & Li bt Roberts & Castillo 9-11, 11-4, 11-8
Organiser Neil Roberts reports: (to come)