The 2017 Tennis Tasmania Awards winner were announced in a special Celebration of Tennis presentation at the Henry Jones Art Hotel last night.
The Tennis Tasmania Awards celebrate the contribution made by players, coaches, clubs, communities, volunteers and officials for their service to the sport.
These awards align with the prestigious Australian Tennis Awards / Newcombe Medal to be held on Monday 27 November. Winners are now eligible to nominate for an Australian Tennis Award in their respective categories
A highlight of the night was when 84-year-old Max Byrne was inducted into the Tennis Tasmania Life Membership in recognition of the significant contribution he has made to the sport throughout his life.
Max not only has had strong individual accolades including medal finishes at the ITF World Senior Championships, but for more than 55 years, he has dedicated a large part of his life to improving Tennis in Tasmania at a state, regional and club level.
Tennis Tasmania President Philip Bowden was delighted to recognise Max and his achievements.
“Max has a rich history in Tasmanian tennis and we couldn’t think of a more deserving person to induct into life membership tonight,” Mr Bowden said.
“On behalf of our sport, I’d like to extend our gratitude to Max for his invaluable contribution to Tasmanian tennis this past 50 years.
“I’d also like to thank the wider Tasmanian tennis community, including players, members, volunteers and coaches for their excellent contribution year-round to our great sport” Mr Bowden continued.
Tennis Tasmania CEO Darren Sturgess was thrilled to be involved in his first awards night.
“Our celebration of tennis incorporating the Tennis Tasmania Awards night is a great way to recognise the significant contribution of members within the tennis community,” Mr Sturgess said.
“We received a high calibre of applications, which is a testament to the number of people who go above and beyond in their roles.
“Tennis is truly a sport for life and appeals to all ages, genders, and abilities. It is built on the hard work of volunteers, clubs, coaches, officials, players and members, and this night is a great way to celebrate the valuable contribution of all.
“I am so pleased and grateful for the support of the wider tennis community in recognising and celebrating the great achievements of all our winners tonight. I look forward to many more opportunities to celebrate and recognise the Tasmanian tennis community for years to come,” Mr Sturgess continued.
Seven time Grand Slam champion and former Davis Cup Captain John Fitzgerald attended the event as a guest speaker and fondly recalled his days growing up in a small tennis community and how it helped shape his successful tennis career.
“Growing up in a small town in SA, you realise just how important the role every member of the tennis community plays to ensure the viability and success of our sport,” Mr Fitzgerald said.
Tennis Tasmania Awards Winners
Most Outstanding Club or Centre
Devonport Tennis Club (Devonport)
Leigh Titmus (Devonport)
Coaching Excellence – Club or Centre
Tony Blom, Ace Tennis Coaching (Hobart)
Excellence in officiating
David Vernon (Launceston)
Most Outstanding 35+ Tennis Senior
Shaun Summers (Burnie)
Most Outstanding School
Goulburn St Primary School (West Hobart)