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KCL Tennis Wants King’s Students To Rally Around Them This Varsity

Logo courtesy of KCLSU

King’s College London’s (KCL’s) largest sports club hopes to avenge their previous 3-2 loss at this year’s Varsity Series.

With ten competitive British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) teams, recreational and staff programmes, and an LGBTQ+ session, KCL Tennis’ timetable is packed to the brim. “It’s a busy old week”, Jonathon Dawes, the club’s president, says. “One of my bugs with King’s College London as a university is that we don’t have any tennis courts. So, our trainings are fragmented.”

As a result, the BUCS teams split their practice across the year between Bromley Tennis Centre, one of the country’s high-performance academies, and The Queen’s Club in Baron’s Court. “It’s a huge, huge honour to train there,” Jonathon highlights, as it’s the second oldest tennis club in the world.

The lack of facilities has not stopped KCL Tennis from having a successful season. Jonathon points to the club leadership as a key reason: “We’re more ambitious, we want to do more things with tennis. The ambition and energy are there, and just better governance. We’ve been able to provide the leadership that the club needed.”

The Women’s First team is a particular point of pride for Jonathon. “We started the year with no Women’s 1 players – all eight of them graduated last year, so we had to build them from scratch. They’ve pulled out some really big wins this year. They beat UCL twice, at home and away. We haven’t done that in a very long time.”

However, his highlights of the year come from the club as a whole. “The events we’ve done this year and the people we’ve brought into the club have gone way beyond my imagination of what we can do.”

But Varsity remains on Jonathon’s mind. “It’s in its own league. I want it to be my legacy that we took KCL Tennis to Varsity success.” The historic rivalry between KCL and UCL has a twist, too. “Our Men’s 1 Captain’s sister is the president of UCL Tennis, so that adds a very interesting dynamic.”

Ultimately, Jonathon underlines the importance of the atmosphere on the day. “Our players want huge support from King’s students, so I’m trying to make it more of an event. I hope that all students at King’s come and support us on what I hope will be a great day for tennis at King’s.”

You can watch KCL Tennis from 10:30 on 15 March at Lee Valley.

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