The five-day Hudson Bond tennis tournament, which finished on Tuesday, involved most of the Academy's experienced Tennis Squad players. Most of our players were able to advance safely through early rounds and a number finished high in the final results.
Sophie Vickers advanced through to the late rounds of the 14 year girls' singles. In the consolation series, Sophie finished in the top four.
In the 12 years girls, Stephanie Barnett was also successful in her early rounds. Stephanie also played well in the consolation rounds to finish in the top 8.
It was a similar result for Jo Alexander-Commerford. He was finally eliminated in the quarter finals of the consolation, which is a top 16 result.
Natasha Tile teamed up with Sophie Vickers in the 14 years doubles where, having made the quarter finals, they had a top 16 finish. Tessa Hawke and Chelsea Rawnson had a similar result in 16 year age group.
Two other doubles combinations to do well included Krystal Rawnson with Tamara Wright (16 years girls), and Ryan Pattle with Josh Gumley (14 years boys). Both doubles pairs finished in the top 32.
Overall it was a challenging series for Academy players, in such a highly competitive event, where there were often 128 or sometimes 256 in an age group draw. But we had many Academy players with excellent results, which is the perfect way to finish off our tennis year.
In last weekend's regional teams competition for u13 boys, the Academy had three of its squad members playing.
Josh Hanrahan lost only one match in the entire competition helping his side to an overall 3rd place.
Liam Gibson and Tom Deery helped the Bairnsdale side to a 4th place finish. Both boys were recruited to the this year's tennis development squad and have shown great gains from its programs.
Academy player Edward Hawke was runner-up in the feed-in event in the recent National Junior Points competition. The event was held in Canberra.
Hawke's result result ranked him high up in the final competition results and augurs well for his tournament schedule over the next couple of months.
Academy Tennis Squad members put in a strong showing at last weekend's Coke Tournament in Traralgon.
Natasha Tile defeated her team mate Sophie Vickers in a close final of the 16 years girls singles. Both Natasha and Sophie are 14-year olds, and were playing up an age group.
In another all-Academy final, Josh Grumley defeated Josh Hanrahan in the boys 14 years final. In this event, 12-year old Brent Davidson also played well, going through to the quarterfinals.
Sophie Grumley and Victoria Shanahan also won their singles events, girls 12 and 14 years respectively. Thomas Deery was runner-up in the boys 12 years final.
The current round of tournaments coincide with the Melbourne Pennant competition in which the more experienced Academy squad players are regular competitors. However, these tournament events are providing valuable match practice for the younger players and they have been achieving outstanding results.
At last weekend's Coke Tournament in Traralgon Thomas Deery won the boys 12 and under singles title. Thomas, in his first year with the Academy, has shown rapid improvement and the result is a tribute to his dedication.
Brent Davidson, another new 12 years player who is showing great potential, competed in the 14 years singles and was successful through to the semifinals.
With many of the Tennis Squad's players in Melbourne playing in the pennant series, the newcomers carried the Academy's name with distinction.
Ex-Academy champion, Vicky Stuckey, won the 16 years girls' singles.
New Academy athlete Nicholas Tile was a surprise winner in the 10 years singles title at Ringwood last week. He then followed up with a doubles win.
A number of others from the Academy squad made quarter finals of singles or doubles events. These included Maddi Barnett and Krystal Rawnson in the 16 years girls' doubles, Stephanie Barnett and Sophie Grumley in the 12's doubles, and David Waddell, with past athlete Chris Thomas, in the 16's boys doubles.
In the singles competitions earlier in the week many players struggled in their early rounds. However with their coaches taking a key role in game planning and analysis, most of the squad performed far better in the doubles events in the later days.
Even so, Jo-Alexander Commerford and squad newcomer, Brent Davidson, were impressive in the singles .Jo-Alexander had a tough singles draw, but he made the most of it including a gritty 3-6,6-3,6-3 comeback win over the 12th seed, before being stopped by another high-seeded player. Brent made the third round of the 12 years singles, and also made a good start in the doubles.
Overall, it was a demanding week for our 17 squad players involved in the Tournament, given the extremely high standard of competition. Thanks go to our coaches and parents for their support during the week.
The Academy's Sophie Vickers played in the Nationals at Brisbane last week. After a hard-fought round 2 loss, Sophie played in a consolation series where she was beaten in the quarterfinal.
It was a similar run in the doubles, again going through to a quarterfinal of the consolation.
In the same event, ex-Academy athletes Vickey Stuckey and David Donchi played into semifinals - doubles for Vickey, and singles fo David - before their runs came to an end.
Academy Tennis Squad athletes performed exceptionally well at the Coke Tournament two weekends ago.
Victoria Shanahan comfortably won the girls 14 years title. In the girls 16 years event, Natasha Tile and Sophie Vickers played off in the final with Sophie winning.
In boys 12 years, Liam Gibson won the final, but on the way he knocked out his team mates Nic Tile and Tom Deery in the semifinal and final.
In the boys 14 years, Ryan Pattle and Josh Grumley made it through to the semifinals and finals.
In boys 16 years and under, Josh Hanrahan was runner up in the final - a remarkable result for a 13 year old player.
The Academy players are to be congratulated on their strong showing in the tournament.
At last weekend's Australian Junior Grasscourts Championships, at Mildura, Vicky Stuckey captured her third Australian title, the Girls 14's Doubles.
Vicky teamed with Tasmanian Alyssa Hibberd, and they played through all rounds and finals without dropping a set. Their doubles success was even more impressive since the girls cannot practice together.
David Donchi also competed in the Championships, going through to the quarter finals of the singles.
Gippsland Sports Academy tennis players, Vicky Stuckey from Flynn and David Donchi from Baimsdale, gained selection in State Regional teams prior to Christmas to represent Victoria in Cup competitions in January.
Vicky was selected for the 13/U Foundation Cup played in Sydney, and
both Vicky and
These events are organized by the Australian Federation Cup Foundation in association with the Australian Open and Tennis Victoria and with the cooperation of Tennis Australia and participating State Associations.
The Victorian Foundation Cup team comprised Vicky, Jacqui Polilner
The Victorian team performed excellently before going down 4-2 to New South Wales in the Challenge Play-off final.
Former champion Victorian, Judy Dalton (nee Tegart), president of the Foundation, personally presented the Judy Dalton Medal to the most outstanding player of the Cup competition for performances, sportsmanship and general attitude on and off the court. Challenge Manager, Alison Leydin announced the winner as our own Vicky Stuckey.
One week later, Vicky and David Donchi, as well as Kate Redfern from Shepparton and Sam Sheppard from Warrnambool, represented Victoria in the Ambassadors Cup Challenge.
In addition to the Victorian team, the Cup involved State teams from New South Wales and South Australia, as well as three teams representing the Asian Tennis Federation and chosen from earlier qualifying competitions in its twenty three member countries.
Despite only losing one match to the eventual winners, Victoria played off for second and third spot and won convincingly against one of the Asian teams.
The other two Asian teams took first and second positions.
Australian tennis legend Margaret Court (nee Smith), MBE, arguably the best female player the world has seen, is Patron of the Federation Cup Foundation and has an annual Medal struck in her honour.
At the conclusion of the play-offs, Allson Leydmi, representing the Foundation, announced the winner of the annual Margaret Court Medal to be our own David Donchi and Margaret personally presented the Medal.
Veteran Baimsdale administrators, John and Julie Glynn, also had lead roles in the conduct of the Cups, John as Cup Director for the Ambassadors Cup and Julie as manager of both Foundation and Ambassadors Cup Victorian teams.
One of the Foundation’s major aims is to assist Tennis Australia in identifying and nurturing talented young girls and boys from rural and regional Australia who have the potential to one day represent their country in Federation Cup or Davis Cup competition.
One day we hope Vicky and David realise their dream and do represent their country as ambassadors of GippsIand.
In the pre-Christmas Warrnambool Tennis Tournament, Academy athletes achieved excellent results. David Donchi and Edward Hawke played off in the 14 years boys singles final. David was the successful, and the pair later went on to win the doubles final.
Joshua Hanrahan won the boys 12 year singles, and also teamed up with lvan Kiriakov to take out their age group doubles.
Two new Academy players, Tessa Hawke and Chelsea Rawnson were runners-up in the 12 years girls doubles, which shows their great prospects for the future.
Not to be over shadowed by the girls, the boy’s team made up of Jay Milford-Robertson, David Waddell, Edward Hawke and Haydn Clancy won the section nine pennant. The boys played off for champion team in grade nine, but unfortunately they lost. They also played for Caulfield Rec Club. Chris Thomas played for M.C.C. and took out the grade 10 final. Other members to compete in finals, but just fall short were, David Donchi in grade four for Grace Park and Jo Alexander-Commerford in grade six for Springvale. These were great results by all athletes.
Prince Masters Final Series
Australian Claycourts Championship Qualifiers
Congratulations to all athletes gaining these outstanding results.
David Donchi and Edward Hawke won Victorian titles at the recent Tennis Age Championships. Teaming up in the U14 boys’ doubles event, the Academy pair comfortably won the final, 6-3, 6-1.
Both David and Edward were also entered in the U14 singles event. They met in the semi-finals where Edward was eliminated. David kept his form and went on to win the final.
Congratulations to both boys - and all of the Tennis Squad - for their outstanding results during the year.
(Story summary courtesy the Latrobe Valley Express.)
The Academy’s Tennis squad players formed the core of a Central Gipsland team who were crowned champions at the 2005 Tennis Victoria Association Teams Challenge at Bendigo on 11 and 12 June..
The Victorian champion Central Gippsland team members were 16 and under girls Vicky Stuckey and Kate Marshall, 16 and under boys Chris Thomas and Jo Commerford, 14 and under girls Abby March-Maddams and Natashia Tile, 14 and under boys Edward Hawke and Alexander Thomas, 12 and under boys Josh Hannrahan and Ivan Kiriakov and 12 and under girls Tessa Hawke and Sophie Grumley.
Twelve players comprised the Central Gippsland team, seven of them are Academy athletes.
The Gippsland Sports Academy Tennis Program travelled to Frankston in the second week of the school holidays, to compete in the Frankston Junior Masters. This was an Australian Junior Rankings tournament and all athletes that attended were hoping to perform well to gain points, and to boost their national ranking.
All the athletes competed well at this tournament with most players getting through their first round matches, but the standout performances were by Vicky Stuckey and Kate Marshall. Vicky took out the 14’s girls singles, while Kate won the under-14’s girls consolation singles. Vicky won a tight three set final against Alexandra Tsinanis, with the final score 5-7, 7-5, 7-6. Kate overcame some tough opponents to win in straight sets against Abbey Thomas 7-5, 6-4. Vicky also performed well in the 14’s girls doubles with partner and Academy athlete Jessie Johnstone, making the semi finals.
While most competed at Frankston two athletes, Edward Hawke and David Donchi, competed at the nationals in Mildura. The two boys competed well and proved that they were competitive at that level. All results gained by the athletes are a great start to the 2005 Gippsland Sports Academy Tennis Program.
The Gippsland Sports Academy held its induction day for its Tennis Victoria Tennis Squad last week. The Academy’s tennis squad has been increased since last year and now includes 16 athletes from all over Gippsland, 7 of those returning athletes. 2005 successful scholarship holders are Jessie Johnstone (Bairnsdale), David Waddell (Nicholson), Maddie Barnett (Bairnsdale), Kate Marshall (Pakenham), Jay Milford-Robertson (Bairnsdale), Krystal Rawnson (Longford), David Donchi (Bairnsdale), Jonathon Burge (Sale), Jesse Jones (Inverloch), Josh Hanrahan (Traralgon), Ivan Kiriakov (Traralgon), Chris Thomas (Traralgon), Edward Hawke (Traralgon) Vicky Stuckey (Flynn) and Jo Commerford (Tanjil Sth).
Also appointed were the head coaches for 2005, Graham Charlton and Mark Stevens from the Traralgon Tennis Association. The tennis program held its first session last weekend and incorporated all aspects of the game. Kerry Otto held a nutrition sessions for all the athletes, Kerry frequently delivers presentations to tennis athletes regarding the right nutrition and diets in sport. After, the athletes were then involved in land training conducted by Les Ponton, working on footwork. Les put the athletes through their paces, with a high intensity circuit around the courts in Traralgon. If that wasn’t enough, coaches Graham Charlton and Mark Stevens then held a four-hour training session for all athletes working on all areas of play.
The Tennis Victoria Tennis squad are working exceptionally hard as they approach the first of their major tournaments, Frankston Junior Masters in April. Also in April, 13 of the tennis athletes will be playing pennant in Melbourne, a great effort and we hope they enjoy the high level of tennis in Melbourne Pennant.
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