Risbygate Tennis Club in Bury St Edmunds celebrates first ever promotion to National Tier of the LTA National League
There was a Davis Cup-like atmosphere at Risbygate Tennis Club as their men’s side overcame Langley 4-2 to win them their first ever promotion to the National Tier of the LTA National League.
It means the Bury St Edmunds club will be among the top 32 clubs from more than 4,000 competing across the country in the Men’s Open competition from next April.
They will be going up against the likes of 2019 champions Roehampton – who include Great Britian stars Cameron Norrie and Joe Salisbury on their playing roster – and 2019 runners-up Sutton in the South East section of the National Tier.
The young Risbygate team were all educated in Bury St Edmunds, between King Edward VI School and County Upper.
Captain Asa Sumner-Keens, 19, is currently training for his tennis coaching certificate while Will Cooke, 22, has just returned from a USA tennis scholarship. Haadi Shah, 18, has just taken his A-levels while Seth Newman, 16, is studying for his exams at County Upper.
The team finished ahead of seven east of England regional clubs to win the South East North section of the Regional Tier in just their second year after promotion.
Risbygate’s tennis secretary, Helen Stacy, said: “I have never seen this level of tennis played at Risbygate, it was truly breathtaking to watch.
“It is quite astonishing that a small, local club like Risbygate, with only four outdoor courts, has reached this level nationally. Next year we will competing against clubs with 30 or 40 courts!
“I think all our members feel so proud of our young team, all local lads, and all credit to their coaches at Titan Tennis Academy, of which Asa, our team captain, is one.”
The semi-final with Langley, which took place on June 12, was even at 2-2 after the singles, with Newman winning a notable three set two-and-a-half-hour marathon to edge Risbygate towards writing their piece of history.
Newman & Sumner-Keens and Cooke & Shah duly won their doubles to seal their promotion to the National Tier.