Varcoe’s glory at the tennis treble

First published in Sport

Elaine Varcoe won a hat-trick of honours at the Burnley Tennis Club annual finals day to seal a remarkable season.

While Varcoe made it three wins out of three it also meant she won every doubles tournament she has played in this season.

Alongside doubles partner Daniel Taylor, the pair cleaned up in the East Lancashire Lawn Tennis League.

They were mixed doubles league champions, individual mixed doubles winners and were a part of the team that won the mixed league, playing as first pair.

In the Burnley and District Tennis League, they were crowned the Harold Lever mixed doubles champions – also adding the knockout tournament.

So they were hot favourites to triumph on ‘home’ soil – and so it proved.

And there was no room for sentiment as Daniel got the better of his dad in the mixed doubles final as he and Varcoe beat Iain Taylor and Jill Thorpe 6-0, 6-2.

That completed the hat-trick for Vascoe who won the ladies singles in impressive fashion, beating Jo Heywood 6-1, 6-2.

But they then teamed up to win the ladies doubles in some style, beating Donna Livesey and Alison Pagett by 6-1, 6-1 in a very one-sided final.

The men’s singles final was a tight affair with Stephen Palmer beating Chris Rowell in a champions tie-break, triumphing 10-3 after both players had won one set each.

Palmer won the first set 6-2, but Rowell, watched by his dad, former Burnley and Sunderland star Gary Rowell struck back to take the second set 7-5.

But it was Palmer who proved to be the stronger by winning the champions tie-break 10-3.

The pair then teamed up for the men’s doubles but lost out to Iain Taylor and David Whittaker – with the final set going to another champions tie break.

Palmer and Rowell won the first 6-3 before Taylor and Whittaker took the second 6-0 then winning the champions tie break 10-8.

Steven Blackadder won the veterans singles, beating Nigel Holt, 6-4 - 6-1.

He also won the the doubles, teaming up with Allistair Baldock to beat Ashgar Ali and Derek Walker, 6-2 - 7-5.

In the boys final, the highly-talented Marley Byrne beat Matthew Crossley 6-4, 6-2.

The girls singles was a marathon affair with Victoria Baldock beating Lydia Garraty, 6-3, 3-6 and 7-2 on tie break.

In the junior doubles final, Matthew Crossley and Daniel Frost came out on top, beating Annabelle Baldock and Marley Byrne, 6-2, 6-4.

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