GB and France victorious at IC Week 2019, France
Ninety years ago, Jean BOROTRA founded the IC of France, the second International Club of the world. To celebrate this anniversary, the IC of France chose the city of Le Touquet and the exceptional setting of the Pierre de Coubertin Tennis Center to host The Mercelis Trophy for females and The Windmill Trophy for males.
In the Mercelis Trophy, the IC of GB ladies showed their strength to overcome Germany in a tightly contested semi-final which went down to the match tie break in the final doubles rubber, before beating the home nation in the final. The IC of Belgium were successful in winning the ‘playback’ matches to lift The Wooldridge Trophy.
In the Windmill Trophy, the IC of France men dominated against strong opposition (New Zealand, Great Britain and Belgium), in some high-level tennis. The IC of Mexico were successful in winning the ‘playback’ matches to lift The Orsini Trophy.
The full list of participating teams and members are enclosed:
Draw - Mercelis & Wooldridge
Results - Mercelis & Wooldridge
Draw - Windmill & Orsini
Results - Windmill & Orsini
Message from Anne-Marie ROUCHON:
The Mercelis Trophy was created in 1997 and I am pleased to remember that Christiane MERCELIS (a very athletic player and many times Belgian Champion) played in the quarterfinals at Roland-Garros in 1957 against Ann HAYDON-JONES. Later in the 1960s, I had the honour to play a final against her, precisely on the Le Touquet tennis courts! At that time, tennis was amateur, so it was with a secret satisfaction that I followed these team competitions played in a friendly atmosphere, with no other "retribution" than cups and flowers!
Sports and friendship links between players of different nations together with the fair play did not prevent the on-court combativeness nor the deep desire to win. I was both surprised and delighted by the magnificent show from all the players in singles and doubles. The generation differences coupled with the traditional tennis anchored in various cultures are the source of a great variety of playing styles: welcome to one-handed backhands, finely distilled dropshots and lobs that coexist with the violent hits, unreturnable services and breath-taking rallies!
But we cannot talk of camaraderie and friendship if there are not relaxing moments between matches; fun activities were organised on the afternoons such as French bowls (la pétanque) or walking in the waves while others visited la Côte d'Opale on bike.
Of course, there is no festive week without some good restaurants allowing participants, organisers and spectators to share moments together: the welcome cocktail organised at the Town Hall in this impressive Gothic English style building, flanked by a thirty-eight meters high belfry, allowed the Mayor to highlight the investment of Le Touquet to offer the best conditions for hosting major events. In the same way, the dinner at "La Base Nord" where we went with the small country train helped us learn more about the Canche Bay: the building, all in wood, like a fisherman's house, was for the occasion kindly decorated with portraits of great tennis champions. Finally, the official dinner organized at "L'Escale", certainly delighted our taste buds but also our ears ; the various speakers, Mayor of Le Touquet, President of the FFT, Chairman of the IC Council, President of the IC of France, competed with their different talents to praise the virtues of the IC Spirit and the virtues of the International Club: "Hands across the net, friendship across the ocean".
Anne-Marie ROUCHONIC of France