30 November 2017 | Tennis SA

Well we have come to the end of another TennisFest. After seven days, thirteen events, seven activations and eight appearances with the Australian Open trophies, the truly inclusive and diverse event offered opportunities for people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds to get involved.

Here is a recap on the week that was…

The Australian Open trophies, Norm and Daph, made the trek over from Melbourne with their first appearance at the official media launch on Thursday 16 November. Norm and Daph were accompanied by Tennis SA CEO Steven Baldas and Channel 7 Adelaide sports reporter Theo Doropoulos to visit South Australia’s ANZ Tennis Hot Shot of the Year nominee, eight-year-old Ryder Donald (Henley Beach, SA) at his Fulham North Primary School. Norm and Daph then continued their day visiting a very exciting whole school assembly at Norwood Primary School.

On Friday 17 November, Norm and Daph, started the day with a visit to Norton Summit Primary School. In the afternoon, to celebrate the partnership between TennisFest and the Australian Melanoma Research Foundation, along with the launch of the TennisFest Ace Chase, Norm and Daph had photos taken with Rachael Sporn (Australian Melanoma Research Foundation CEO) and team.

Unfortunately, some rough weather hit on Friday causing us to postpone Sets in the City and cancel the Junior State League Super Round.

Saturday 18 November saw the South Australian Tennis Championships for Players with an Intellectual Disability kick off at Next Generation Memorial Drive. Matches were played in great spirit throughout the day, with some closely contested results.

Norm and Daph continued their adventures, making a special appearance alongside Mark Soderstrom and Jessica Adamson on the Channel 7 news desk.

TennisFest kicked up a gear on Super Sunday with 54 courts running simultaneously around Adelaide and over 300 hours of tennis played in one day.

At Playford City Tennis Centre, the ANZ Tennis Hot Shots Carnival gave children the opportunity to test out the custom made modified Playford City Tennis Centre ANZ Tennis Hot Shots courts, along with the Speed Serve and Hit the Target.

The final two rounds of the Super 10s were played across 12 courts with some excellent tennis and sportsmanship on display. In the girls, Team Pliskova (Theodora Kiparogolou – Team Manager, Sukhi Venkatesh, Emily Briggs, Taylah Lessue and Stella Privopoulous) took first place, whilst in the boys, Team Zverev (Jim Chaousis – Team Manager, Aiden Lim, Keaton Weyer, Mitchell Reichelt and Tyce Lush) took the win.

The inaugural 12/u Challenge Cup was played with some fantastic tennis on display. Henry Lamchinniah and Kushi Venkatesh took the win following some very close and exciting matches taking place.

The Chinese and Playford Multicultural Programs took to the court during the afternoon, with more than 100 players taking part in matches and games, along with photos with Norm and Daph.

A variety of programs were also showcased on the Show Courts throughout the day, including Wheelchair Tennis, Cardio Tennis and our Ballkid Squad.

Off court, the Tennis SA Association’s Lunch Association Presidents and Secretaries celebrated TennisFest and enjoyed lunch together before joining the action on court level.

Compass Draw matches took place at West Lakes Tennis Club and Millswood Tennis Centre. Western Districts Blue won the 12/u event, whilst Southern Districts Blue won the 14/u event.

The South Australian Tennis Championships for Players with a Disability continued with both male and female finals taking place. In the Division 1 men’s Sam Von Einem defeated Joshua Holloway, while in the women’s Carla Lenarduzzi defeated Joanna Klaosen. In Division 2, Tim Adam defeated Peter Kerin and Wendy Farmer overcame Anne Rossiter.

In the State League Grand Final rematch, Trinity Gardens took the win over Glenlea in the men’s, five rubbers to one. In the ladies, Memorial Drive defeated Seaside, also with a five rubbers to one victory. The TennisFest Ace Chase was a roaring success with $1350 raised on the day to go towards the Australian Melanoma Research Foundation. 

TennisFest then came to an end with the City of Playford Gold AMT. In the men’s final, Darren Polkinghorne defeated Sean Van Rensburg 6-3 6-1 and Ramona Mataruga defeated Selina Turulja 6-4 6-1 to win the women’s.

A special thank you also to the following people:

  • Tennis SA Board and Staff
  • Sets in the City Official Ambassador – The Right Honourable, Katrine Hildyard MP
  • Official Media Partner – Channel 7 (Chantelle Leaney, Theo Doropoulos, Mark Soderstrom, Jessica Adamson and team)
  • Official Apparel Partner – DG Sport
  • Next Generation Memorial Drive – Peter Smith, Bronwyn Smith, Luke Smith, Melanie Read and team
  • White Marquee Event Hire – Greg Evangelou, Meaghan Creeney and team
  • Fulham North Primary School, Norwood Primary School and Norton Summit Primary School
  • Elaine Caldana – Tournament Director South Australian Tennis Championships for Players with an Intellectual Disability
  • Bronwyn and Peter Smith – South Australian Tennis Championships for Players with an Intellectual Disability
  • Super 10s and 12/u Challenge Cup coaches
  • Damian Vejnovic and Arzy Boorowa – Tournament Director City of West Torrens Gold AMT
  • Officials – Referees, Court Supervisors, Chair Umpires and Line Umpires
  • Dylan Manov – Sets in the City DJ
  • Kirk Julius – Sets in the City MC
  • Ben Macmahon – Photographer
  • Brett Hidson and Amelia Waters for accompanying Norm and Daph on their flights
  • Ballkid Squad
  • …there are just so many people to thank, so to anyone else we might have missed, thank you, we really appreciate your support.

Finally, thank you to all of the participants and spectators who were a part of TennisFest, we really appreciated your involvement and look forward to seeing you next time!