It is said that experience is one of the greatest advantages in sport, so how do you beat a doubles pair with 156 years behind them?
Horsham Lawn's Tom O'Connor and Les Warrick form a potent partnership, holding their own against opponents nearly 60 years younger.
Despite a combined career that outdates the tennis club itself, the pair still enjoy taking to the court.
"I'm pretty proud of the mobility I have, and I reckon while I'm still moving, I'll maintain. But I reckon if I stop playing I'll lose it," Warrick said.
O'Connor echoed his partner's sentiments.
"Personally, I think tennis is the best game because you can play for so long and still mix with people of all ages," he said. "I've been playing against young Archie Sudholz from Natimuk, and he's probably 13 or 14 and you can still communicate on the tennis court."
O'Connor first took to Horsham Lawn's courts in 1954, returning as a regular nearly 25 years ago after venturing around the state with work commitments.
Warrick is in his first year with Horsham Lawn after his old club Quantong was unable to field a side.
Both have played all but one game this season.
"It's been good playing together. I'd known Les for a little while beforehand," O'Connor said. "As a team we've done alright. We've only lost one game so far."
O'Connor and Warrick adopted tennis as juniors and have played witness to many of the sport's greatest changes.
"When we were kids we didn't have the transport options to go where you wanted to independently. So, you went where your family went," Warrick said. "If your family played tennis, you followed suit. Everytime there was a break, or there was a court empty you were out there playing."
"Back in our youth there were no junior sports," O'Connor said. "Football, tennis or anything. You started off playing football with say the Pimpinio seconds, with adults and against adults. It was the same with tennis."
Warrick said tennis had fallen victim to the changing tide of sports over time.
"There's a lack of interest. I did a count up about a month or so ago and there are about 16 clubs that aren't playing anymore. These were clubs that probably had 20 players each. So, there's been a huge drop off," he said.
Though time may soften priorities, the competitiveness still remains
"It's still a game of tennis and you try to beat them," O'Connor said.
"I don't care if I don't win, as long as I've made the others work hard to beat me," Warrick said. "What I enjoy most about tennis is the interactions with other people, right through from schoolkids to people our age."
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