Saturday, 28 July 2012

Sharon Pollack Memorial Tennis Marathon

Honoring the Memory of Sharon Pollack

Sharon Pollack, a long standing member of Manitoba’s tennis community who cheered on her children, Hart and Lisa, on the tennis court through their junior and into their adult years, passed away earlier this year. Hart (a previous President of Tennis Manitoba) and Lisa have created the Sharon Pollack Memorial Tennis Marathon to honor her memory.

The Manitoba tennis community, family and friends are invited to participate in this special event being held at Kildonan Tennis Club on Saturday, August 25, 2012, 9AM-9PM. All levels are welcome!

You may register as a team (up to six players) or as an individual (to be placed on a team). One player from each team is to be on the court at all times. There will be match play, drills, games, door prizes, food & drinks.

 The cost of entry is $40 per person, though everyone is also encouraged raise funds through sponsorship. All proceeds will go to CancerCare Manitoba Foundation to support cancer research and patient care. Come enjoy our community and rally against cancer!

Can't make it? Then sponsor Lisa Pollack at

Share event poster on Facebook, Google+, or Pinterest.

And They’re Off!

2012 Rogers Outdoor Junior National Championships

Tennis Manitoba is proud to be sending select high performance juniors to 2012 Outdoor Junior Nationals these next few weeks. U12s include David Krowiak and Shawn Sophasath. U16s include Connor Davies and Kylie Waschuk. And U18s includes Shane Nicholls. 

This is the first Nationals for Shawn and Connor. Kylie is going with the most Nationals experience and with a solid season of preparation having just completed the Western Canadian Junior ITF Circuit, which had stops in Edmonton, Vancouver, and wrapped up in Winnipeg. Connor and Shane also participated in Winnipeg’s U18 ITF tournament in preparation for Nationals. 

For Shane, this Nationals holds more sentimentality than others: it’s Shane’s final year of junior eligibility. He’s already topped the year off by winning Boys U18 at the Manitoba Junior Open earlier in the summer. So here’s to his and the whole team’s growth and success!

Interestingly, the majority of the junior categories for the outdoor national tournaments are played on clay. Clay is an increasingly popular international surface. Tennis Canada intentionally includes clay as one of its surfaces for what it offers in terms of a player’s greater all round development, injury prevention and longevity and integration into the professional arena. Clay courts can be found in Winnipeg at one of Tennis Manitoba’s member clubs, Taylor Tennis Club.

2012 Rogers Outdoor Junior National Championships schedule:
  • Jul 29-Aug 4: U12 Rogers Outdoor Junior Nationals, Mont Tremblant, QC
  • Aug 5-10: U18 Rogers Outdoor Junior Nationals, Mississauga, ON
  • Aug 6-12: U14 Rogers Outdoor Junior Nationals, Mont Tremblant, QC
  • Aug 14-19: U16 Rogers Outdoor Junior Nationals, Laval, QC
See also:

Friday, 27 July 2012

Manitobans dominate 2012 Manitoba Open

Sean Bailey and Saul Shrom claim the 2012 Manitoba
Open men's doubles title.
In all events excluding singles, players from Manitoba were champions. Achieving this great success was not easy with temperatures ranging anywhere between 30-40 degrees celsius all last weekend. Nevertheless, there were a total of five Manitobans who came out with a title. In men’s open doubles, locals Sean Bailey and Saul Shrom teamed up to defeat another Manitoban, Sean Lacap and Albertan, Vuk Radovic in a three set battle 6-1, 3-6, 6-4. Sean Lacap went really deep in the doubles events picking up the mixed doubles title with another Manitoban, Erika Fridrik. Sean and Erika were able to win two tough sets 6-3, 7-5 against Alan Gardiner and Evann Waschuk. Finally, the women’s doubles champions were Winnipegger, Evann Waschuk and Mikaela Bennett. They won 6-4, 6-4 against Kylie Waschuk and Alessandra Miller. Bennett and Miller came from Alberta to play the Canadian Mid-West ITF (U18) and they performed quite well in both tournaments.

Most of the open action can be found on with a live broadcast from Trevor Borland and Peter Otto. They were able to record the singles finals as Manitoban, Saul Shrom had a great tournament run but he came up short losing 6-1, 6-1 against Tony Larson of Minneapolis in the final. The women’s finals was played by Alessandra Miller and Mikaela Bennett. It was a tough, windy battle but Alessandra Miller was able to defeat Mikaela Bennett. Earlier in the tournament, Evann Waschuk was able to make the semis putting up a good fight falling 6-4, 6-4 against the tournament winner, Alessandra Miller. The 4.5 and 3.5 part of the tournament are happening now with finals today, Friday, July 27.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Kildonan Tennis Club Hosts Manitoba Open

Kildonan Tennis Club's own Sean Bailey in men's open
singles action on Friday. (Photo: B Waschuk)

WINNIPEG, MB - The Manitoba Open will be at Kildonan Tennis Club starting July 17th and ending July 27th. The best tennis players in Manitoba will be battling for the title, along with many other out of town players. Open action will take place from July 17th and the finals will be on July 22nd. The 4.5’s and 3.5’s finals will be played on the 27th.

Along with last year’s winner Kevin Kylar, many of the players who have been playing college tennis in the United States will be back to play the tournament. These players are Saul Shrom (Colorado State University at Pueblo), Sean Bailey (Austin Peay State University), Erika Fridrik (Eckerd College), Alan Gardiner (Bellarmine University), Muzeen Ismath (Gonzaga University) and Evann Waschuk (Bellarmine University) will be playing the biggest tournament of the year.

Two years ago, Tony Larson, from the United States won the title. He is the number one seed and is looking to keep that momentum going another time. The number one seed in women’s draw, Alessandra Miller, from Alberta is back to redeem herself as she lost a tough match in the finals last year. In men’s doubles action, veteran and Manitoba doubles point leader Geoff Kirbyson is signed up with Muzeen Ismath. Meanwhile, on the women's side, local Evann Waschuk and Mikaela Bennett from Alberta will the number one seeds.

See also Provincial championships fast approaching

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Winnipeg welcomes international tennis players

Ren Nakamura and Kei Ezaka of Japan were the boys doubles champs
at the recent Canadian Saville ITF U18 2012 (Edmonton). Both high
ranking Japanese juniors are entered to play the Canadian Mid-West
ITF U18 2012, July 16-22 being held at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club.
(Photo: Don Voaklander)

WINNIPEG, MB - The Winnipeg Canadian Mid-West U18 ITF Tournament, one of three Junior ITF tournaments that make up a western Canadian circuit, is being held this week at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club for the third year in a row. Main draw matches start on Wednesday, July 18th, while the semifinals take place on Saturday, July 21 and finals on Sunday, July 22. Admission is free for the public and a special spectators’ progressive tennis event is being hosted during the semis and finals.

Winnipeg is the last stop in the three tournament circuit, which includes Edmonton and Vancouver. The circuit creates a competitive environment that increases the exposure and level of play and experience, along with the opportunity to gain a world ranking.

Players from all over the world have entered Winnipeg’s Junior ITF, from countries such as Japan, Germany, Italy, India, Mexico, Bahamas, Hong Kong, Puerto Rico, Philippines, Pakistan and the U.S.A. Fantastic international tennis action at one venue. Tournament draws and order of play details are available at Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club is located at 761 North Drive. See you there!

“This is a great opportunity for our young competitive tennis players in Manitoba to measure up against players from around the world,” says Bruce Waschuk, president of Tennis Manitoba. “Local tennis enthusiasts will also have a chance to see a high level of tennis being played right here in Winnipeg.”

For more information, please contact:

Bruce Waschuk
President, Tennis Manitoba
Chair, Canadian Mid-West ITF U18 2012 Organizing Committee
Telephone: (204) 330-0474

Media Contact:

Angela Earl
Executive Director, Tennis Manitoba
Telephone: (204) 881-0817

Monday, 16 July 2012

Manitoba loses a good tennis friend

By Geoff Kirbyson

Manitoba’s tennis community has lost a leader, an organizer, a cheerleader and above all, a friend.

Betty Tough, the longtime executive director of the Manitoba Tennis Association – the predecessor to Tennis Manitoba – died last week in Winnipeg after a brief but dignified battle with cancer. She was 88.

“She was Tennis Manitoba back in the day,” says Peter Otto, head pro at the Kildonan Tennis Club and the Winnipeg Winter Club.

“She wasn’t just a tennis administrator, she was a huge fan. She always supported the local kids both financially and emotionally to do their best to represent the province,” Otto says.

But just because she was in your corner, doesn’t mean she turned a blind eye to the rulebook if you’d tossed a racquet or broke curfew.

“She followed The Yardstick and followed up with any suspensions. Tough was tough,” Otto says.

But Betty will be most remembered for her unwavering support of Manitoba tennis players, particularly juniors, as they prepared for major events such as nationals or Canada Games. A congratulatory note from the executive director after making a provincial team or recording a top-notch result – often read aloud by the recipients in poor impersonations of her

Scottish brogue – were always much appreciated.

Despite having an office, it wasn’t uncommon for juniors to have to visit Betty at her house to sign a form or pick up a team uniform. Her dining room served as a satellite office for the Manitoba Tennis Association as it was full of paperwork, rulebooks and packages from Tennis Canada.

Betty is survived by her husband, Andrew Crawford Tough, and her children Allan (Chris), Brian (Carla), and Sheila (Jim), her grandchildren Colin and Craig, Shannon and Alistair, and Matthew and Ashton, and her great-grandchildren Taylor, Brandon and Connor.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Provincial championships fast approaching

2010 Manitoba Open champion Tony Larson and
2011 champion Kevin Kylar plan to renew acquaintances
at this year's Manitoba Open.

The 2012 Manitoba Open & Senior Open starts next week at the Kildonan Tennis Club, located along the Red River in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Manitoba's best tennis players will be battling to claim provincial championships from July 17-27. The Open events, along with Senior draws, will begin next Tuesday with finals scheduled for Sunday, July 22nd. Online registration deadline for these events is today. The 4.5 and 3.5 draws begin Monday, July 23rd and wrap up on Friday, July 27th. Entry deadline for 4.5 and 3.5 events is Sunday, July 15th at 11:59pm.

All tournament participants receive:
  • 2012 Manitoba Open T-shirt
  • Access to Karoake night held on Saturday, July 21st
  • An all you can eat brunch on Sunday, July 22nd, catered by Urban Prairie Cuisine
  • DewDrop water throughout the tournament courtesy of World of Water, Henderson Highway.
Returning will be last year's men's singles champion Kevin Kylar, along with 2010 champion, Tony Larson. As well, many Manitoba players who spent 2011/2012 on NCAA college tennis teams in the United States will also be participating in the 2012 Manitoba Open. College players include: Sean Bailey* (Austin Peay State University), Erika Fridrik* (Eckerd College), Alan Gardiner (Bellarmine University), Muzeen Ismath* (Gonzaga University), Alex Lesiuk (Colorado State University at Pueblo), Saul Shrom (Colorado State University at Pueblo), and Evann Waschuk* (Bellarmine University).

Visit the 2012 Manitoba Open & Senior Open website.

* Previous Manitoba Open singles, doubles, and/or mixed doubles champions.

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

2012 Manitoba Junior Open Championships

U10 Boys and Girls double participates from the top, left to
right: Rob Langan, David Kives, Trevor Skidmore.
Bottom: Stefan Barre, Reece Carter, Marcello Audino, Sahand
Marzban, Mya Arksey, Sabrina (Abby) Alano

The 2012 Manitoba Junior Open has come to a close, but not without some remarkable results. The U10 co-ed round robin seemed to entertain the entire crowd at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club all week with their professional like demeanor and incredible shot-making. The tournament was extremely competitive and illustrated the immense amount of talent Manitoba has in this young age group. At the end of the day, Marcello Audino was crowned the provincial champion with a win over Reece Carter.

The Under 12 age group had its share of competitive matches as well. Come Thursday, it was the top two under 12 players in the province battling for hours in a three set fight. By a score of 6-3, 2-6, 6-1, Shawn Sophasath beat David Krowiak to become the provincial champion.

As it has been for the past several tournaments, the Under 16 draw was the event’s largest. With nine of the top u16 players in Manitoba competing, spectators saw some clashes for the ages. After first seed Patrick Fu was forced to battle through Eirenpreet Hirkewal in a tough three set semi-final, it appeared as if he would claim a perfect season in the under 16 age group. However, his only loss in this age category this season was to come the very next day. Fu fell victim to the talented second seed, Miraj Soni, who was able to hit through the extreme Winnipeg wind and capture the title, 6-1, 2-6, 7-5.

The under 18 draw saw outgoing junior Shane Nicholls cap off his junior career in fashion with a victory over Patrick Fu in the finals.

The under 12 girls draw was won by Mackenzie Miller, who closed out an impressive under 12 year by not only winning the provincial title, but also ending the year as the top junior in this age category. In order to reach this feat, she knocked off the highly talented young juniors, Reece Carter and Sabrina Alano.

The under 16 event was captured by Chantel Wallack, the top u14 player in the province. She defeated Jennifer Wang and Malika Sharma in the round robin format to claim provincial supremacy.

Next up is the National Junior Qualifier which will be hosted in Winnipeg starting on Wednesday, July 4th. Manitoba will be represented by the Top 3 finishers in each age group. Good luck to all of our competitors!

Marcello Audino takes the U10 boys
and girls Manitoba Junior Open
Mackenzie Miller claims the
U12 Manitoba Junior Open
Miraj Soni sneaks to the title of the U16 boys
Manitoba Junior Open beating
Patrick Fu 6-1, 2-6, 7-5
Shane Nicholls defeats Patrick Fu in the
U18 Boys Manitoba Junior Open 6-4, 6-2.