Davis Cup tennis came to Auckland last week. I think I can say my interest in sport is quite eclectic. Although nowadays its viewed from sidelines or a comfortable sofa. For some reason attached to my childhood, I’ve always detested tennis. I guess it was because I felt like I could never measure up. My extended family included tennis players playing at national level; some very fine tennis players; other players who loved nothing more than to have a hit around on the tennis court, and some who just couldn’t make the grade at all. Guess where I fitted into that group? Yep, I was the kid who couldn’t hit the ball across the net or else would mistakenly slam it all the way over the wire enclosures. Do you wonder that I hated the game, and very soon refused to even consider trying to play it?
Watching tennis on television is about as exciting as watching golf. Yeah, you guessed it. Golf ranks even lower on my list of favourite sports than tennis.
Late on Friday night, my daughter had some free tickets to see a Davis Cup tennis tournament the next day. New Zealand versus Venezuela. Her friend could no longer use them. So next morning off we set off for the city. I wasn’t filled with enthusiasm but my granddaughter wanted to go. It wasn’t fair to expect her uncle to “babysit” her for the day.
Thankfully my son is keen on tennis and explained some of the rules to me, and all of them to his niece. It was a stinking hot day. We’d gone equipped with sunhats, sunblock and drink bottles. We fervently hoped we might find a shady seat to sit in. Luckily we were able to sit under cover the whole time.
My daughter (granddaughter’s mother) texted me mid afternoon. She knew my interest in tennis was non-existent and offered to meet at the stadium and take me home. I can only imagine her expression when I texted back. No way, pick up your daughter if you wish, but I’m staying until the end.
I can hardly believe I’m saying this, but I loved watching the tennis. The teams were reasonably equal in ability and the scores seesawed back and forward all through the games. Obviously I was cheering for the kiwis. It was so disappointing during the final singles match when the Venezuelan player fell and injured his leg half way through the final tie break. The umpire called off the match with the kiwi ahead. It had been such a close, exciting game.
The New Zealand team won this Davis Cup tennis clash against Venezuela. I can’t believe I’m saying this but I’m keen to return to the Stanley Street stadium whenever there’s another game.