If you never lose then you can never appreciate the victories.

Dear Ladies

A year in review

I am delighted to extend my sincere congratulations to each and every one of you for your completion of our 2023/24 season! With the triumphant return of Division 5, we witnessed a grand total of 60 teams engaging in vibrant competition across six divisions, showcasing their skills in daily league matches held throughout Hong Kong.

Our social activities are now back in full swing with a successful Christmas Tournament being held in December and the Captains Cocktails in January bringing team representatives together in a relaxed atmosphere.  Our biggest event of the year, the upcoming Barbie themed Annual Awards and Charity Luncheon will be held at the AMC on 8 May 2024 and promises to be a huge success!  All money raised from donations and the lucky draw will be donated to The Hub Hong Kong, a charity providing educational support, family counselling, social health, and wellbeing services to underprivileged children in Hong Kong.  Event registration is happening now with the dress code of “Be Who You Wanna Be!” so get your team together and get ready for an unforgettable time!

I am also pleased to report that sportsmanship in the Spring 2024 Session was again at an all-time high, with Captains demonstrating remarkable common sense in resolving on-court incidents. There were no protests requiring resolution by the Committee in the second half of the season, which marks a significant achievement for all of us.

Furthermore, it is one of our core values to provide as many ladies as possible with the opportunity to play tennis. I am excited to announce that we are again anticipating a number of new teams joining us for the 2024/25 Season, thanks in large part to the success of our annual HKLTL Open Day, which attracted over 40 prospective new members.  Registration for next season is open now until 19 April so please register your teams with details available on the HKLTL website.

It is also time to acknowledge, congratulate, and celebrate our division winners and teams that have earned the Sportsmanship Awards for the 2023/24 Season:





Hong Lok Yuen

Happy Tennis


Play Better

DB Dazzlers


CWB Bayside Smashers

CWB Bayside Smashers


CWB Simply Smashing

Recreio Play It Forward


AC Slice Girls



Darkside Glory

DB Matrix

Do you have any suggested rule changes?

In the interest of fairness and transparency, the Committee ensures the consistent application of the Rules. However, the Rules themselves are the responsibility of the entire league, and between us we have made significant efforts to revise and update the Rules to ensure they remain robust, relevant, and reflective of our competitive yet friendly/social league. We welcome Captains to submit proposed Rule revisions to the Committee and we ask that you observe Rule 1.5 when communicating with the Committee. Please email your proposals by 23 April 2024 in advance of our upcoming Committee meeting scheduled for 30 April.

Reflecting on the HKLTL’s achievements over the past decade as we prepare to welcome a new Chair

Having served on the HKLTL Committee for nearly a decade, including the past two years as Chair, I will soon be rotating off. In my final letter, I wish to highlight some of the Committee's achievements during this time. I extend my sincere gratitude to the Committee members I've had the privilege of serving with and aim to showcase our accomplishments to inspire more volunteers to join us.

Our Committee has evolved from successfully overseeing the day-to-day operations of the league to now spearheading strategic initiatives aimed at expanding the reach and membership of the HKLTL, fostering sportsmanship, enhancing our on-court experience, and nurturing a sense of camaraderie among women beyond tennis. I take immense pride in the strides our Committee has made as we surge towards a record-breaking membership of some 650 ladies, a testament to the tireless efforts of my wonderful Committee colleagues.

In pursuit of our strategic objectives, you may have noticed: 

1. With the aim of expanding the reach and membership of the HKLTL, for past two years we have made it a priority to reverse our declining number of teams and players. The Committee has taken proactive steps by appointing a dedicated League Recruiter, organising an annual Open Day with free coach assessments, enhancing our presence on Instagram and Facebook, modernising our branding, establishing an affinity scheme with OTR Tennis to facilitate the transition of new players into the HKLTL, improving the new membership section of our website, and providing clearer communication channels for women interested in joining. As a result of these efforts, we have seen a significant increase in interest, with approximately 40 women joining our Open Days in each of the past two years, and 250 new players joining the league in the 2023/24 Season.

2. You might be surprised to learn that historically, the Committee spent the majority of its time dealing with protests, giving us less time to address our more strategic priorities. Some of these disputes dragged on for months, with lengthy and sometimes impolite email exchanges, and sometimes captains even solicited support from other teams. At this time, the Committee lacked a consistent process for resolving protests, and the HKLTL had inadequate rules to address poor behaviour. To address these challenges, the Committee has invested countless hours in enhancing our Rules and Code of Conduct to address all forms of unsportsmanlike behaviour. Additionally, we have developed standardised dispute resolution guidelines along with template emails to send to each party at every stage of the protest process. With stronger rules around conduct, we have seen significant improvements in sportsmanship and camaraderie between teams, and there are now far fewer protests. Where there are protests, the Committee is resolving them more consistently and efficiently, allowing us to focus more of our time on advancing the league's interests. 

3. In the past, our governance structure had its limitations. Our Rules did not stipulate consultation with our membership on important matters, with all decisions made solely by the Committee, lacking transparency and consultation, and based on a simple majority vote. The perception of non-transparent and unchecked decision making could on occasion leave players feeling disenfranchised. To address these issues, extensive efforts have been made to overhaul and enhance our Rules. Expected standards of behaviour have been clearly defined, consultation (with a 75% voting majority) is now required for non-routine League changes, and there is a requirement for polite and concise communication with the Committee. Furthermore, standards of behaviour expected from Committee members have been established. These changes have laid the groundwork for a cultural transformation within our Committee, fostering strict adherence to the Rules, eliminating arbitrary judgments, promoting polite interaction, welcoming sensible suggestions from our membership, ensuring transparency in our operations, and upholding a democratic decision-making process.

4. We also encountered some legacy administration inefficiencies that needed addressing, along with opportunities for streamlining costs. Previously, the HKLTL operated without its own bank account, requiring Committee members to handle cash collections, including significant amounts from member dues and charity events, and our manual bookkeeping was labour-intensive. We printed hard copies of the Rule book for each player and incurred substantial expenses for meetings, including our Captains’ Meeting at the beginning of each season and ad-hoc Committee Meetings. At the same time, our website was outdated and omitted necessary relevant information. To rectify these issues, we established a dedicated HKLTL bank account, introduced cashless collection of registration fees, significantly improved record-keeping and treasury practices, transitioned to a paperless Rule book, and our volunteer webmaster has done a remarkable job revamping our website with up-to-date relevant information. Furthermore, with the savings generated from using Zoom meetings, we have been able to finance our Captains' Cocktail events without impacting our charitable contributions. These administrative efficiencies have also enabled the Committee to keep registration fee increases modest, recognising the importance of maintaining the affordability of HKLTL membership.

It has been an absolute honour to serve the HKLTL, and I aim to continue to participate in our league for years to come.  Once again, congratulations to all Captains on a fantastic 2023/24 season, and I look forward to seeing many of you at the Annual Awards and Charity Luncheon on 8 May 2024!!!

Yours in tennis - Game, set and match!

Alison Whalley