The Veterans tournament this year was noteworthy for a variety of reasons. The number of applications and the number of people actually playing were both the largest on record; there were more minus players competing than in any previous year; in the five Class events there were two 4-way and one 3-way tie; and last and perhaps not least, the current Chairman and Secretary of the CA each managed to win a trophy.
The Rothwell Challenge Cup (for the Championship itself) was retained by the holder, Ken Smith of Winchester, but only by the very narrowest of margins in a 4-way tie over Bill Arliss (Sussex C.C.), the runner-up, Martin Granger Brown (Bowdon) and Michael Rangeley (Cheltenham). In the B class event, for the handsome Felixstowe Cup, Richard Hoskyns of Hurlingham managed, in a criss-cross play-off, to beat not only the winner of the second block, but also to defeat Nigel Gardner (Dunfermline) who had beaten him into second place in the first block. In the third of the Class events, the Chairman of Council (Quiller Barrett) emerged from a 3-way tie to win the Strickland Cup, with Derek Trotman, Chairman of the CA Tournament Committee, in second place.
The Over 70s Championship was won (without a tie or other complications) by Richard Wainman of Cheltenham, with his fellow club member Bo Harris as runner-up. The Over 70s Handicap Singles had of course to produce a
4-way tie, with Ian Birdseye of Budleigh coming a very close first.
Time did not permit play offs in any of the multi-tie events, each of which was resolved on a "Quality of Wins" basis (as the Manager had said they would be before the tournament started); this used a formula under which the winner is the player in the tie who has the highest tally of victories gained by the beaten opponents.
The other two events, the Unrestricted Handicap Singles and the Doubles, were completed (no doubt to the Manager's relief!) without any of the complications encountered in the Class events. In the former, X, Y and Z were all completed, the winners being Nigel Graves, the CA Secretary (Caterham), who thus won the Meredith Cup, Doug Taylor (Kenilworth) and John Gosney (Sussex C.C.). In the main Doubles event fpr the Longman Trophies (the Sussex Trugs) the winners were Bill and Pam Arliss (Sussex) the runners-up being Hamish Hall (Bristol) and Diana Brothers (Sussex), the consolation Y (for the Gilbert Spoons) was won by Geoff Cuttle (Woking) and Tom Frost (Crawley).
It would be nice to report that the weather was brilliant and the lawns of the finest order, but it can be said without fear of contradiction that the spirit of the Veterans remains undiminished and, as always, unique.
The Rothwell Challenge Cup: KJ Smith (Winchester)
Runner up: WH Arliss (Sussex)
The Felixstowe Cup: RF Hoskyns (Hurlingham)
Runner up: NT Gardner (Dunfermline)
The Strickland Cup: RQ Barrett (Surbiton)
Runner up DW Trotman (Tyneside)
The Pidcock Trophy (Over 70's Championship): RJ Wainman (Cheltenham)
Runner up: Mrs GD Harris (Cheltenham)
The Over 70's Handicap: ID Birdseye (Budleigh Salterton)
Runner up: DR Clarke (Sidmouth)
X The Meredith Cup: NR Graves (Caterham)
Runner up: Mrs DE Brothers (Sussex)
Y Winner: DNK Taylor (Kenilworth)
Runner up: LR Ainsworth (Fylde)
Z Winner: JR Gosney (Sussex)
Runner up: NT Gardner (Dunfermline)
X The Longman Trophies (The Sussex Trugs)
Mr & Mrs WH Arliss (Sussex)
Runners up: HM Hall (Bristol) & Mrs DE Brothers (Sussex)
Y The Gilbert Spoons: G Cuttle (Woking) & TH Frost (Crawley)
Runners up: M Granger Brown (Bowdon) & Mrs VC Henderson (Sidmouth)