3 May 2024 | Tennis Victoria

From modest beginnings on a couple of asphalt courts on the site of the local Primary School oval to 12 floodlit en tout cas and synthetic clay courts tucked away off Doncaster Rd, Doncaster Tennis Club’s century-long story mirrors the growth of many tennis clubs in Melbourne. The first recorded committee meeting in 1921 was presided over by Mr Goodson, the principal of Doncaster Primary School. If not for the influenza pandemic of 1919 the club might have convened a year or two earlier, and the Covid pandemic delayed the Centenary celebration until Sunday April 21, 2024.

The club has been on its current site since 1949, starting out with 3 courts and a tin shed amidst the apple, pear and peach orchards that Doncaster is famous for. Through sheer hard work, countless cake stalls and prudent management, the club has renovated the clubrooms multiple times, added nine courts and created a host of memories for thousands in the Manningham community. Their honour boards boast names such as Pat Cash, Warren Maher and Chris Kachel, while over 100 attendees at the celebration were treated to a moving speech from club member Shirley Whitaker, who has a career high ITF ranking of World No

1 in the 85+ years category. Remarkable!

Speeches were also made by the Mayor of Manningham, Cr Carli Lange, Tennis Victoria’s Interim CEO Tamatha Harding, and several club members with great tales from the club’s rich history. Tamatha presented the current President Gail Norman with a commemorative plaque to acknowledge the rare milestone.

Having rebuilt the club’s membership post-pandemic, and with a strong junior coaching program under the stewardship of Vicky Lee (Slamin Tennis), the next 100 years seem assured.