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Edgbaston is the place

Where they serve up many an Ace


Invented by Major Harry Gem:

A game for lithe athletic men


At 8 Ampton Road: ‘Fairlight’

You’d see rubber balls in flight


Men and women both

They’d hit balls with all their might


In clothing… Oh so bright!

A game played in Lilywhites


As played on a manicured lawn

In the summer of 1859


Young men and women courting

Eating, drinking, laughing


Eligible bachelors and young maidens

Playing on a mown green grass court


‘Good shot sir!’… they’d shout

With many a lascivious thought


The young women they did ‘Glow’

As they knocked balls to and fro


Over a rudimentary net

With strawberries and cream…..you bet!


Lawn tennis started to grow

Into the game that we now all know


Fred Perry, Bunny Austin,

Ann Jones, Virginia Wade


Andy Murray and Sue Barker

Grand Slam Champions were made


So next time you’re in Birmingham

Recall Edgbaston’s Major Gem


And the Great Game that he gave us:

‘Game, Set and Match: Amen!’



Keith Bracey Birmingham Tennis Fan