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Lew Hoad

“Lew Hoad was some guy. He would sit here at the bar in his tennis ranch in Spain, finish off a few beers, then light up his Embassy cigarettes. I remember one time he had just had a swift pint when he eased himself off the stool and said he had to have a quick hit with some Swedish young up and coming young feller called Edberg. 40 minutes later he was back at the bar having polished him off in quick time without dropping a game. Yes some guy and some tennis player!”

We had been chatting to some new friends at the Lew Hoad tenis y padel Club in Mijas who had known Lew back in the 70s when the club had just started. Gigi and David were big fans of his and remember him as a hell raiser with a heart of gold. And like many hellraisers his star waned all too quickly and he died long before his time.

This was our first day ie Monday 12th Sept and we were glad to have avoided the Hurricane blowing in from the Atlantic. 30C was preferable to cold rainy blustering winds and gales.

After saying adios to David and Gigi off we headed to the Escuela de Miraflores Tennis Club where we were greeted by club pro Fernando Gill, who left his game of Canasta briefly to welcome us. And soon late in the afternoon the club began to fill up with players training for next week’s tournament at Lew Hoads club. Jorge Haenaelt whom I had played last year gave me a big grin and high five before taking the court. Jorge won a gold medal for Spain at sailing in 1984 Olympics before taking up tennis with a vengeance. And what a mover round the court!

“You play here tomorrow at 11:30am Willie?” demanded Fernando. “I arrange good mens doubles for you. Ok?”

What can you say to such a request but yes. And of course Carole will play Ladies doubles.

Back to base along the A7 for 10 minutes in our little hired car and our next objective was to locate a venue to watch Rafa and Djokovitch go head to head!

Till the next time and batten down the hatches!


Willie & Carole

Lew Hoad