Tuesday, 17 November 2009

50 years at Bellevue Tennis Club

My dad, Lu Engler, is an avid tennis player and was a good one at that too. This year he celebrated 50 years of being a member of the Bellevue Lawn Tennis Club in Glenwood. To honour him for this very fine achievement, they had a lamb on the spit on Saturday, 14 November 2009 at the club. It was great to go back there and it still looks very much the same as what I remember from a little girl going there. There have been some alterations done, of which my dad was the "work party" in getting it done. One of the guys who made a speech. All the speeches made were just so true of my dad. He is never one to sit around. If something needs to be done, he gets on and does it. He maintained the books of the club as well as keeping the bar stocked and apparently he used to tell the barman not to throw away the empties as he would count those against what was left in the fridge to balance against the money received!!
One of the things said in one of the speeches was you wanted a person like my dad on your committee and you just don't get people like that any more. This is a picture that the club had framed and will take pride of place in "The Lu Engler Lounge".

Val Maiden giving a speech. She reminded everyone of the brilliant "falls" my dad had. The "off the fence run" where my dad ended up running up the fence due to the momentum in getting a shot. There was also one where he could not stop and ended up rolling on the ground and then getting up and carrying on playing. Another when he could not stop at the net and ended up going over the top!! I must say I did witness one or two of those and they were spectacular - funny too!!! When I was younger and went to the club I used to play with Val's children who I think went on to play tennis themselves. I played for a short while, but preferred badminton and squash.
Inside the pub looking out onto the lounge my dad built.

The club from the main entrance.

The club from down on the tennis court.

Our family at the club.

My mom and dad.
In 1962,63,67 and 68 my dad won the men's singles competition. In 1961,63 65,66,67,68 and 69 he won the men's doubles competition. In 1963,64 66,67 68,69,70,71,72 and 76 he won the mixed doubles competition.
He also played in the masters championships as well as the grand masters championships. Sadly his knees have been giving him problems and last year he had a knee replacement and needs to have the other knee done as well, so is not able to play much tennis at all.
Well done dad, you are certainly an inspiration to the youth of today and have been a great inspiration to me.

Proud daughter signing 0ff ....


Helen Tilbury said...

Wow Michelle what a read! Your dad certainly is a champion & I love that you are always so great at recording all the facts & figures in such detail. I could also play a mean game of tennis until I had a bad fall {not on the tennis court} a few years ago & messed up my feet pretty much for good. Tennis is a great game - love it - and that club looks very nice! Your dad's legacy will certainly live on there whether he plays again or not, ;-D

Andrea said...

What a fantastic tribute to your dad...you must have felt very proud to be there with him.

Desire Fourie said...

Oh wow Michelle, what a fantastic tribute to your Dad. One can now see that the apple does not fall far from the tree. The club really looks so welcoming and I am sure all the members probably have fantastic memories of it and is still creating new memories.

Mmm ... I see someone is wearing his, can't see clearly, his Gatvol shirt. Great that your whole family could be there.


Anonymous said...

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Craig Scott said...

Thanks for the fantastic write up and I am glad you enjoyed the evening. Lu has made a significant contribution to the club and more importantly to the lives of the club members. His honesty, loyalty and work ethic should be an example to us all. We wish him and his family all the best.

The Bellevue Lawn Tennis Club Committee