Ian Watson (Diamond Creek) has a burning desire to play tennis that few can match. He has played 33 Pennant seasons straight, with only a cruel injury stopping him reaching 34 last year.
It is an outstanding show of longevity and Watson doesn’t plan on hanging up the racquet anytime soon.
“I don’t know whether I’ve played too much tennis, but my Grade Four teacher would be aghast at seeing me fill out score cards holding the pen with a continental grip,” joked Watson.
“I don’t know how many matches I’ve played but it must be around 1500.
“This includes Saturday Afternoon Mixed, Tuesday Night Men’s, Thursday Night Men’s and Thursday Afternoon Veteran’s competitions.”
He also still plays Pennant for Bundoora Tennis Club.
Watson was a late bloomer when it came to starting tennis, only picking up a racquet for the first time as a teenager.
“When I was 15 my younger sister won a tennis racquet … being into little athletics, cricket and football I’d never held a tennis racquet before,” said Watson.
“Probably because my sister had something I didn’t, I felt the urge to use the racquet and hit balls against the double door garage of the family home.”
During his first season of tennis, Watson was paired up with Ashley Foley and the two are still playing alongside each other today after striking up an unbreakable friendship.
“We haven’t always played together, but we’ve always met and kept in touch. I still see several people that I first met in my junior days.
“The social contact is a key attribute within tennis circles,” Watson added.