Recreation & Sports - Tennis

Marbella Copa Hola 2007

Saturday 14th July 2007
Report On the Copa Hola Marbella Open Tennis
Manola Santana Tennis Club, Marbella

Good attendance of approx. 1000 people in the 1200 seater stadium.
Reserved section for sponsors in shade. Everybody else facing full sun.
Good light-hearted atmosphere with rousing music before play started.

Welcome speech by Manolo Santana. This was Bahrainis first visit to Marbella.

1st SEMI-FINAL

Mansour Bahraini vs. Henri Leconte
Leconte´s beautifully fluid easy style to stoup for Bahraini.
He won the first set (6-1) so in the second set the players introduced more gimmicks to entertain the crowd, some involving skilful play, others jokers such as Bahraini holding 6 balls in one hand to serve! Leconte won the second set (6-4). When asked wherever he would prefer to meet Borg or Nastase in the final, Leconte said he hoped it would be Santana!

2nd SEMI-FINAL

Illie Nastase vs. Bjorn Borg. This was a repeat of the 1976 Wimbledon final. Nastase did not wish to remember that occasion but intended to win today.
Borg claimed they were very good friends and played at the senior circuit all over the world, and were delighted to be in Marbella these few days.

In spite of Nastase´s over size racquet, Borg's fitness and accuracy were too good and he won the first set (6-4). Errors crept in and Nastase led 5-1 in the second set but was tiring and invited a ball girl to take his place! Borg caught up and won the match 6-4, 7-6.

SUNDAY 15TH JULY 2007

Play started at 7:00 pm with a doubles match between Nastase and Bahraini vs. Erik Scherer and Fernando Sanchez, the 2 top players at the Santana Tennis Club. The youngsters put up a good fight coping well with Bahrami´s clowning more acrobatics. The collapse of the net halfway through, allowed the veterans a rest more they went or to win the one long set 9-7.

The singles final followed between Henri Leconte and Bjorn Borg, a more serious match showing that neither player had lost his skills. A fine contest won by Leconte 4-6, 6-3, and 10-3 in the final set tie break.

Trophies were presented by Juan Soto of Diario Sur, Alfonso Honenlolie and Jesus Gil y Gil. Manolo Santana thanked the Marbella Town Hall and all the sponsors for their superb. Sr. Gil y Gil made a speech expressing his pleasure at having such renowned tennis stars in Marbella and in an expansive gesture gave Santana permission to enlarge his club as much as he wanted!!

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