And if either the boys or girls team win their event they will automatically move up to the next level of county competition.
In all there are six or seven county groups,’ explained men’s Channel Islands’ captain Ian Morgan , ‘and although we’re in one of the bottom ones, we’ve every chance of doing well, especially with the girls’ team we’ve chosen.
‘Francesca Dubras, who is based at a performance centre in Sutton, is coming back to the Island to play, while Katie Gouyette, who is also playing very well at the moment, will be cutting her skiing holiday short by catching the morning flight from Geneva to Gatwick and on to Jersey to play.
‘Although we’ve three good under-18 boys unavailable, with two away on holiday and one at an academy in the South of France, we’ve still a very strong team, including three students from Millfield.
Charlie Cohen and Scott Clayton from Jersey plus Nick Thiebeault from Guernsey.
For all of the boys, however, this is an opportunity for them to shine.
‘For the last 20 years we’ve had to travel to the UK to compete, so to hold the tournament in the Channel Islands is a major event for us.
I also think that some of the players, travelling to the Island, see it as a mini-adventure; they’re probably too young to remember Bergerac, but I’ve no doubt that they will enjoy the thought of playing here!’ In all 80 players and coaches are arriving in Jersey for the first day of competition, on Friday, at Les Ormes for a 10 am start.
The counties who will be taking on the Channel Islands’ boys’ team are North Wales, who play their first game at Les Ormes on Friday, followed by Northumberland on Saturday and the Isle of Man on Sunday.
Meanwhile the under-18 girls’ team will play favourites Wiltshire on Friday, Gloucestershire on Saturday and the South of Scotland on Sunday.
While the girls’ team is arguably stronger than the boys’, both squads include players who are currently playing some of the best tennis of their young lives, with the Channel Islands’ girls’ team being made up of Megan Hearse and Jo Dyer (Guernsey) plus Francesca Dubras, Kirsten McCarthur, Sarah Jones, Nicole Dubras, Laura Cattison and Katie Gouyette from Jersey.
The boys’ squad consists of Nick Thiebeault, Ally Higgins and Jonny Clayton (Guernsey) plus Charlie Cohen, James Connelly, Scott Clayton and Jordan Roberts (Jersey).
In the round robin tournament each team plays six singles’ matches and three doubles and all competition takes place at Les Ormes.