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IC of France win their second consecutive Columbus Trophy

IC of France win their second consecutive Columbus Trophy

The 13th edition of the Columbus Trophy took place at the 103-year-old Delhi Gymkhana Club grass courts on 2nd – 5th November, and was inaugurated by the President of the Delhi Gymkhana Club, Lt. Gen IJ Singh (retd). Unfortunately, Pakistan had to withdraw beforehand, leaving 7 strong participating teams. This was led by the world number one in the over 55’s category, Frenchman Jacques Hervet, whilst the Indian team was led by Indian Davis Cup players Ramesh Krishnan, Nandan Bal and Jasjit Singh. 

Group Stages 

Group 1 consisted of Japan, France and India Spins. In the opening match, the French were too strong and defeated the hosts, the Indian Spins, 5-1. Then Japan caused the biggest upset to date and defeated France 4-3. After a 3-3 draw, the tie had to be decided by a doubles match, comprising of one player from both the 55 and 65 age group, in which the Japanese surprisingly came out on top. In the last remaining match of group 1, despite a tough fight, the Indian Spins went down to the Japanese, ensuring the Japanese finished top of the group. 

Group 2 consisted of GB, Belgium, Argentina and India Slices. On the opening day, GB defeated Belgium 4-2, winning a pivotal doubles match in the 55 age group, where the GB team fought back from 2-6 to win the match, and the tie, on a tiebreak. In the other opening match, Argentina were simply outstanding and defeated the Indian Slices 5-1. On day 2, both GB and Argentina established their places in the semifinals by both defeating the Argentinians and Indian Slices. 

Consolation, Semi-Final and Final 

Group 1 saw Japan and France qualify for the semifinals, whilst GB and Belgium went through in Group 2. In the first semifinals, led by the experienced Jacques Hervet, France were in top form and easily defeated the British team, 4-1. The second semifinal was a closer affair, which ended up in a 3-3 draw between the Belgians and Japanese. However, as per the Columbus Trophy rules, Belgium qualified for the finals by virtue of having won more games.

In the finals, unfortunately the Belgium number 1 player, Philippe Vercruysse picked up an injury mid match. Overall, France displayed their tenaciousness and experience, and comfortably won all four singles to clinch their second consecutive Columbus Trophy. 

Playoff matches were played to decide the finishing positions, leaving the final standings as follows: 

1. France
2. Belgium 
3. GB
4. Japan
5. India Spins 
6. Argentina 
7. India Slices 

Prize Giving and Dinner

Held at the beautiful Terrace Gardens of The Taj Mahal, New Delhi’s premier hotel, Mr. Vikas Singh, President of the IC of India spoke about the strength of the IC fraternity, along with the close encounters on court, coupled with the warm camaraderie off it. Following Vikas's speech, all the team Captains spoke of the success of the event and the warm hospitality they had received. 
To mention everyone was in 'high spirits' (pun intended) would be an understatement. It was indeed a fitting conclusion to a wonderful five days of tennis and truly brought home the IC message of “hands across the net, friendships across the oceans.”

Sanjeev Kassal
Honorary Secretary IC India

You can see a video of the match between Jacques Hervet (France) and Steve Alger (UK) by clicking the link - 


Belgium Team


GB team


Japanese Team



The host team the Indian Spins


Columbus Trophy Participants


Columbus Trophy Participating Teams

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