On Sunday, in his final match as the Head Professional at the National Tennis Club in the Newport Casino, former Jamestown, RI resident George Wharton, together with his partner, Mark Devine of Aiken, South Caroline, were narrowly defeated in an exciting Pell Cup match against Time Chisholm of New York City and Josh Bainton, George’s successor, of Newport.
Chisholm is the world’s second-ranked court tennis player.
Wharton and Devine lost the first set 6-5, and the second 6-4 and pressed their much younger opponents fiercely throughout the match.
The evening before this match, Wharton and his former assistant, Jacques Faulise, of Cranston, were the guests of honor at a dinner at the Conanicut Yacht Club. More than 100 people were in attendance as many speakers lauded Wharton and Faulise, who were each retiring after many years as the court tennis professionals at the National Tennis Club.
Faulise had been the assistant pro there for 17 years, and Wharton the head pro for 15 years.
The dinner was part of the festivities occurring during Pell Cup competition, a double tournament attracting players from around the world. Players compete in five divisions.
Ken Jacobs and Greg Van Schaack, of Tuxedo Park, New York, defeated Newporters John Damon and Doug Speak in the A division. In the B division, Jamestowner Jane Lippincott teamed with Chris Cline of NY to defeat Robin Martin and Rick Moroscak, both of Washington D.C. Newporter Ross Cann and Peter Elebash of NY and Pam Beach defeated Kip and Frank Curren, of Middletown, RI in the C division. Peter Bender of London, and Sean Herlihy of Boston defeated Newporters Liz Kavney and Arthur Chapman in the D division.
The top division, the Open, was won by Chisholm and Bainton. Josh Bainton took up his duties as the new head professional of the National Tennis Club shortly before this tournament began. His assistant will be Richard Smith of London.
George Wharton has moved with his family to Jupiter, FL but maintains, through his relatives here, close time to Jamestown. Jacques Faulise is now the lawn tennis professional at the Duxbury Yacht Club. Both Wharton and Faulise have vowed to stay active in court tennis competition.