The weather may have swung from one extreme to another but it was not enough to stop another successful running of the Dave Matthews Seniors Tournament.
Tournament director Steve Taylor from Nelson Bay Tennis Club called the three-day event, run November 30 to December 2, a “great success”.
“It really does just get bigger and bigger every year,” he said. “All the feedback I have been receiving has been really positive, which is great.”
The tournament saw 224 play.
Greg Scott and partner John Toohey from Sydney won the Dave Matthews Shield this year, defeating Scott Homsey, from the Central Coast, and Paul Westaway, also from Sydney, in the final 6-0.
It is the first time since 2015 that Sydney’s George Penny has not won the shield. Scott came runner up last year.
Taylor said “horrendous weather” forced organisers to call off the first day of the tournament on November 29, which was a charity day for MND.
Many players that had signed up to play donated their entry fee to MND. Across the weekend, $1000 was raised.
The competition picked up on Friday morning and carried through the weekend. Some players were forced to withdraw from the tournament on Sunday due to the heart.
A highlight of the tournament this year was seeing Andrew Rae and Michael Tebbutt play. Rae, 67, from Melbourne, is the number two ranked player in the world in the men’s over 65 singles.
Tebbutt, 47, a now retired professional tennis player from Sydney, was once ranked 87 in the world for the men’s singles and 28 in the world for men’s doubles.
“You can pick the quality,” Taylor said of Rae and Tebbutt. “Andrew is only a tiny man but he is very crafty. He won his singles event comfortably. Michael, he hits a beautiful tennis ball. You can see how he did so well in tennis. They were really great to watch.”
Nelson Bay Tennis Club president Rod Stubbs and coach Blake Denison played in an exhibition match on the Friday afternoon with division one badge competition players Paul Cottee and Brad Weatherstone from Sydney.
Taylor said spectators that turned out to watch the exhibition match on Friday afternoon were treated to “some really good tennis”.
“These guys are pretty evenly matched,” he said. “It was entertaining. The crowd seems to enjoy this match.”
Taylor thanked all the volunteers that helped across the weekend, and the event sponsors: Shoal Bay Country Club, Port Stephens Toyota, Bella Rose Boutique, Moonshadow-TQC Cruises, Niagara Therapy, Love Oil Collections, Raine & Horne Real Estate, Jadee Sports.