Dickins in dominant form at Takapau event

Bridget Dickins will have her named engraved on two more championship cups after last weekend's efforts.

Dickins and a group of Manawatu players attended the renowned Takapau doubles tournament on Saturday and Sunday.

Takapau annually attracts many of the top doubles players from surrounding provinces for its post new year fixture. This was the first time Dickins had attended the tournament but she looked immediately at home as her and partner Samantha Rowe waltzed through the first couple of rounds in the women's doubles without dropping a game.

It wasn't until the semifinals where they met first seeds in Manawatu player Natalie Dean and her partner Victoria Kerrison, from Hawke's Bay, that Dickins and Rowe were made to work.

This was a tough encounter against two formidable doubles players and it went down to the wire with Dickins and Rowe eventually triumphing 6-4 4-6 10-6.

This was Deans' first competitive fixture since recently giving birth, but she still displayed her class.

The final was a walk in the park in comparison and the two were the first two Manawatu women to claim the women's doubles title in years.

Dickins then went back on day two to repeat her first day heroics in the combined doubles.

It was another Manawatu pairing of Gareth and Heather Toland who were highly fancied for the event, having attended the tournament on several previous occasions.

The Tolands were No 2 seeds but had a very tough draw and were beaten in the semifinals by Takapau locals Andy Hunt and Suzie Snell.

Dickins played her combines with Jono Spring and battled through a tough semifinal against top seeds Kerrison and Russell Broughton winning 6-2 7-6.

The final was a much more one-sided affair, with Dickins and Spring toppling Hunt and Snell 6-3 6-1. Dickins has now accumulated a remarkable five championship cups in the space of two weeks, and continues her fairytale season.

■ Starting tomorrow is the Manawatu Summer Open at the Feilding Tennis Club.

Tomorrow is the 10s and 14s, Thursday is the first rounds for the 12s and 16s and then Friday is their semifinals and finals.

Nearly 70 competitors have entered the tournament, mostly from the Manawatu area, but there are also representatives from Wellington, Taranaki and Bay of Plenty.

Manawatu Standard