Byron Bay tennis star and Feros Care Hero, Margaret Fisher has wowed the crowds for the past ten days at the ITF Super-Seniors World Championships in Croatia.
The unseeded 86 year old took silver in the over 85s, 2-6, 1-6 against reigning world champion, Canadian Rosemarie Asch on Sunday night Australian time.
She had previously convincingly knocked out the number one seed Italian Erzsebet Szentirmay in the first round on Monday 19 September 6-2, 6-1, and the French unseeded Monique Giffard 6-2, 6-1 on Wednesday.
It’s been a big week of competition for Margaret – egged on by her team mates and daughter Stephanie – she played on an almost daily basis, competing in the over 85s singles and over 80s doubles, and over 85s mixed doubles. Her doubles partner 86 year old Rosemarie Asch (who defeated Margaret in the over 85s singles tournament) have played electric tennis together against their younger competition.
Margaret said she is both “exhilarated and exhausted” after playing the competition where she took home two silver and two bronze medals.
Local aged care organisation, Feros Care, declared Margaret a Feros Hero in 2014 after they began the sponsorship that enabled her to compete on the international senior’s tennis circuit.
Feros Care CEO, Jennene Buckley said “we are so proud of Margaret, she epitomises exactly what it is to be a Feros Hero – she is strong and fit and never backs away from a challenge. Margaret believes in the Feros adage ‘get bold, not old’!”
Eighteen months ago Margaret thought she may never play again due to a serious health issue. Instead she decided to take six months off to fully recuperate before resuming her fitness schedule that would exhaust many younger people.
She plays tennis on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, has a coaching session on Wednesday, and practice serves on the courts with her border collie Leo on the weekend. Each day also starts with a long walk through the streets of Byron Bay or along the beach with Leo.
Margaret said “After my illness Feros said, ‘have another go at the World Championships!’ I am forever grateful for the support from Feros and also from all those at Byron Tennis. Thanks to such support and encouragement.”
Never one to rest; on her return from Croatia, Margaret will be help her daughter Ginny in the Quilty horse endurance race in Ballarat as her strapper during the 160 km ride.
Having played tennis most of her life until her 50s, including playing in Wimbledon in 1953, Margaret had a long break from the game until she took up tennis again at age 80 and has “never felt fitter!”. She said “I love being fit. I love having goals.”
As Margaret likes to say “today is the first day of the rest of my life.”