10 January

Love Match

Rob Bishop

After a long break, Rob got back into tennis by playing in the Cheltenham Parks Tennis League and when he and his girlfriend fell in love with the sport, a tennis court was the natural place for him to propose

I played a bit of tennis at school, but got out of the habit after I left. It was only when I ended up moving to Cheltenham to live with my now-wife Katy that we started playing together. She noticed the Local Tennis Leagues and suggested I join up. I was very nervous for my first match but after a heavy defeat we went for a beer afterwards and I've never looked back! Tennis has been quite a big part of our life since we've been together, playing most weekends. In fact I even proposed to Katy on our local tennis courts by smuggling the ring inside a tennis ball!

I really enjoy tennis as a sport, it helps me be active outside of the office - it's sociable and it's competitive! I even started a couple of social office tennis events, although the standard wasn't quite up to the league matches!

My style of play is all about covering the court and leaping around at the net! Playing in the leagues has definitely improved my consistency and particularly with serving. Still a way to go, but definitely an improvement.

I like to keep track of my matches and always try to improve results when I'm playing an opponent again. I'm always checking the league to see how my opponents have got on in their other matches! I've had some epic rivalries with players over the years I've been in the leagues, trading matches each round! My most recent achievement was finally beating a player after losing our first three meetings!

I would thoroughly recommend the tennis leagues. It is such an accessible and affordable way to play competitive tennis. You can take it as seriously as you like, very seriously in my case!

The next round of the Cheltenham Parks Tennis League begins on 16 January. Join here by Monday 12 January.