Tennis leaders win another close encounter

Renwick CPR continue to show the way in the Wine Brokers NZ premier tennis competition, notching up another narrow win on Wednesday.

The leaders managed a countback victory over Rapaura Wairau River Noir while Rapaura Wairau River Blanc also claimed a win on countback, beating Marlborough Forrest Wines.

Renwick CPR lead after four rounds, sitting on 42 points, with Rapaura Blanc second on 38 and Marlborough tied with Rapaura Noir on 19.

Despite their relative positions on the standings, the Renwick v Noir tie turned into a battle royal. The doubles were shared, Hamish McRae and Jared Bell giving Rapaura an early boost by recovering from a first set reversal to win the top double, 0-6, 6-2, 10-4 over brothers Oscar and Joseph Sandford-Jury.

The Renwick duo of Daniel Riordan and Mieko Kimura levelled the scores with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Blair Harvey and Ella Sowman.

The singles were also shared, both Sandford-Jury teens winning their matches, then Bell and Sowman replying for Rapaura.  On countback Renwick won seven sets to Rapaura’s six.

The other match was also extremely tight.

Hamish Morrow and Stephen Dempster best Ant Walkenhorst and Glen Cameron 7-6, 7-6 in the top double to allow Marlborough a strong start, but Hugh Robinson and Donna Clark’s 6-1, 6-1 win over Jay Geris and Amber Lyons levelled the tie.

The key match in the singles was between Geris and Robinson. Although the former prevailed, the fact it went to three sets worked in Rapaura’s favour when the tie was decided on countback.

Morrow also won his single, beating Walkenhorst 6-4, 6-2, while Cameron and Clark replied with for Rapaura, leaving the tie locked up 3-3, Rapaura getting home 7-6 on set countback.

In division two, the Marlborough Nga Hau Wha team continued on their winning way, beating Marlborough Next Gen 5-1, while Rapaura Wairau River Rose downed Renwick Rallycats by the same score.

After four rounds Nga Hau Wha sit on top of the table with 46 points, from Next Gen (31), Rapaura (27) and Renwick (17).

Rapaura Wairau River Blanc duo Glen Cameron, serving, and Ant Walkenhorst during their doubles match on Wednesday. Photo: Peter Jones.

Tennis leaders pushed all the way

Renwick CPR continued their unbeaten run in the Wine Brokers NZ Marlborough premier tennis competition, but were made to fight all the way to secure victory on Wednesday evening.

Renwick defeated Marlborough Forrest Wines on a countback in the match of the round after matches were tied at 3-3.

Marlborough made a fast start, Hamish Morrow and Jay Geris beating the father and son combination of Oscar Sandford-Jury and Dave Sanford 6-3, 6-4 in the top doubles.

However Renwick bounced back in the other double, Joseph Sandford-Jury and Mieko Kimura beating Stephen Dempster and

Amber Lyons in straight sets.

With Oscar Sandford-Jury edging Morrow in a third set tie-breaker in the top singles Renwick got their nose in front, however Lyons notched a three-set win over Kimura in the women’s singles to level the tie again.

Dempster won his singles clash, as did Joseph Sandford-Jury, leaving the overall match scores tied, Renwick prevailing 69-63 on games won after each side won the same number of sets.

In the other tie, Rapaura Wairau River Blanc defeated Rapaura Wairau River Noir 5-1.

In the top double, Ant Walkenhorst and Glen Cameron defeated Hamish McRae and Jared Bell 6-3, 7-5. Blanc then went 2-0 up when Hugh Robinson and Donna Clark defeated Blair Harvey and Ella Sowman 6-4, 6-4.

In the singles Walkenhorst beat McRae 7-5, 6-2, Robinson downed Harvey 6-4, 7-6, Cameron overcame Bell 6-1, 6-4 and Sowman defeated Clark 6-4, 6-4 to claim Noir’s point.

In division two, Marlborough Next Gen defeated Rapaura Wairau River Rose 4-2 while Renwick Rallycats downed Marlborough Nga Hau Wha 5-1.

Ant Walkenhorst was part of the victorious Rapaura Wairau River Blanc combination. Photo: Peter Jones.

Tennis competitions underway

The 2020 Marlborough Tennis Association’s Wine Brokers NZ premier tennis competition kicked off with some entertaining encounters on Wednesday evening.

In division the favoured teams prevailed – Rapaura Wairau River Blanc beating Marlborough Forrest Wines 6-0 and defending champions Renwick CPR easing past Rapaura Wairau River Noir 5-1.

In the first match, the Rapaura Blanc combination of Glen Cameron, Ant Walkenhorst, Donna Clark and Hiro Kishida proved too strong across both doubles and singles, winning each match in straight sets.

In the other, the Renwick team of Oscar Sandford-Jury, Dave Sandford, Joseph Sandford-Jury and Mieko Kimura also notched a comfortable victory, Oscar and his father Dave beating Ben Burridge and Jared Bell 6-1, 6-3 in the top doubles match to open their side’s account.

Of note was Rapaura youngster Ella Sowman’s 6-2, 6-4 singles win in her first premier match, providing her team’s single point.

In division two the scorelines were closer.

Renwick Rallycats, comprising Daniel Riordan, Luan Muir, Jason Anderson and Geoff Duckett, downed Rapaura Wairau River Rose 4-2. Two of the matches won by Renwick went to a super tiebreaker while Tony Fenemor and Eveline van der Linden claiming singles wins for Rapaura in what is shaping as a tight competition.

To illustrate that point, the other division two match ended 3-3, Marlborough Nga Hau e Wha taking the honours 8-7 on countback over Marlborough Next Gen.

The winning team won both doubles, the top match between Next Gen’s Joe Yank and William Poff, against Jan Dexter Cabiling and Ivan Fedoryshchev being decided in a super tiebreaker 6-3, 3-6, 10-6.

Presidents grade also kicked off this week, with teams doing battle across four grades around the various courts of Marlborough.

WK+ Presidents Grade Results from October 13.

Division 1: Rapaura Masters 2 (27) Rapaura Wairau River 2 (29); Grovetown Grove Tavern Top Shelf 3 Rapaura Just Move 1; Renwick Netsetters 0 MTC Chilli 4.

Division 2: MTC Volleyeurs 1 MTC Swallows 3; Rapaura Matadors 1 MTC Power 3; MTC Marvels 4 Renwick Mighty Four 0; Rapaura Newhawkes 3 Rapaura Pinot 1.

Division 3: Renwick Miss Hits 0 MTC Tennis the Menace 4; Rapaura Chardonnay 1 Renwick Re-strung 3; Grovetown Grove Tavern Turf & Tackle v Renwick Rookies n/s; Renwick Rebels 1 Renwick Racketeers 3.

Division 4: Rapaura Defenders 0 Rapaura Shiraz 4; MTC Boom Boom Time 4 Grovetown Grove Tavern Platters 0; Renwick Racquets 2 (28) Renwick Rascals 2 (22).

Felix Parkinson reaches for a return. Photo: Peter Jones.

Tennis tyros take care of Coasters

Marlborough’s rising tennis talent came out on top when the annual Wilding Trophy fixture, which was delayed due to COVID-19 in April, was contested at the Forrest Winery Tennis Centre recently.

A team of 14 players from Marlborough and West Coast competed across multiple matches on Thursday and Friday.

Day one began with doubles – a nice way to iron out all the winter rustiness and get into the tennis groove again.

West Coast came out on top, 4 matches to 3, with the top boys and girls pairing going through to a super tie third set. Singles was up next and some great performances across the board from Marlborough saw a 10-3 result.

Then it was back to doubles with a few mixed combinations included. This time Marlborough got up 4-3, thanks to a clutch victory by William Poff and Poppy Parkinson who won their super tie third set 10-6.

Friday opened with reverse singles and Marlborough once again dominated 10-3 with the highlight being the last game in this round where Ryo Kimura beat Stanley Vercoe in three sets, both players responding to all the other players and supporters crowding around the court and cheering them on.

The last round saw a new set of doubles combinations with West Coast again prevailing 4-3. Three of these matches were decided by third set super tiebreaks – Poff and Kimura combining for a top notch win, coming back from 3-8 down to win 10-8.

Unbeaten players across the five matches were Marlborough’s Leon Marusaki, Cooper Johnson and Ben Preece while West Coast players Honor Barry and Connor Greig maintained a 100 percent winning record.

Overall, the Reilly Quirk-coached team won the fixture 30-17, a scoreline that did not reflect the tightness of the matches. A feature of the fixture is the relaxed atmosphere, which is always a highlight.

Next up for the Marlborough juniors is an under-14 rep fixture against Nelson for the Malcolm Shield on November 8 at the Marlborough Tennis Club.

Marlborough: Felix Parkinson, William Poff, Elijah O’Donnell, Ryo Kimura, Luke Marusaki, Josh Harris, Leon Marusaki, Max Sowman, Cooper Johnson, Ben Preece, Ella Sowman, Poppy Parkinson, Ana Eradus, Ruby Glackin.

Darren Herd, at net, and Oscar Sandford-Jury were part of the victorious Renwick premier team last season. Photo: Peter Jones

Court appearances set to rise

It is tennis time again, with two major competitions swinging into action this week.

On Tuesday, the well-supported WK+ Advisors and Accountants Presidents Grade kicks off, then the Wine Brokers NZ Premier Grade begins the following evening.

There has been a change in the premier grade structure for 2020. This year there will be two divisions, with four teams in each section. There will be three rounds and then a finals night just before Christmas.

In division one the teams consist of three men and one woman who will play six matches each night – three men’s singles, one women’s single, a men’s double and a mixed double.

Division one consists of two Rapaura teams, one Marlborough Tennis Club team and one Renwick team.

In division two there are two Marlborough Club teams (including a talented junior team, named ‘Next Gen’), one Rapaura team and one Renwick team.

Division one teams:

Rapaura Wairau River Noir: Hamish McRae, Blair Harvey, Brendon Sutherland, Ella Sowman. Rapaura Wairau River Blanc: Anthony Walkenhorst, Hugh Robinson, Glen Cameron, Donna Clark. Forrest Wines Marlborough:

Hamish Morrow, Jay Geris, Stephen Dempster, Amber Lyons. Renwick CPR:

Oscar Sandford-Jury, Dave Sandford, Joseph Sandford-Jury, Mieko Kimura.


Division two teams

Rapaura Wairau River Rose: Hiro Kishida, Hamish Shield, Eveline van der Linden, Lynn Murray, Georges Decken, Tony Fenemor. Marlborough Next Gen: Theodore Sandford-Jury, Dan Clarke, Jo Yank, Sid Yank, William Poff. Marlborough Smashers: Jaco van Hensbergen, Joshua Joseph, Ivan Fedoryshchev, George Geris. Renwick Rallycats: Daniel Riordan, Jason Anderson, Geoff Duckett, Luan Muir, Anna Simpson.


Presidents Grade

The ever-popular Presidents Grade competition, will include 28 teams – six teams in divisions one and four, and eight teams in divisions two and three. The competition will run right through the summer, concluding in early March.

Both Rapaura and Renwick clubs have nine teams apiece, while the Marlborough Tennis club has seven teams and Grovetown three.

Division one teams

Marlborough Chilli: Daniel Riordan, Peter Stubbs, Adam Dawe, Sandy Stubbs, Mieko Kimura. Renwick Net Setters: Anthony Bowron, Stephen Bryant, Adam Balasoglou, Luan Muir, Caroline Cornelius, Amber Lyons. Rapaura Masters: Hiro Kishida, Owen Dodson, Stephen Dempson (R), Tony Fenemor (R), Donna Clark, Pauline Fudge. Rapaura Just Move: Kyle Heagney, Mike Russell, Loren Hickin, Emily Stenhouse, Jane Bay, Amber Boyce. Rapaura Wairau River: Hugh Robinson, Warner Nichol, Lynn Murray, Eveline van der Linden, Karen Nichol. Grovetown Grove Tavern Top Shelf: Brendon Sutherland, Darin Herd, Owen Dodson, Venice Langrope, Raewyn Heta, Susie Glover.


Inspire Tennis Primary Schools Competition

This year sees 39 teams taking part in the competition across five divisions. Division one is made up of four very strong teams. All the players receive coaching, many of them training twice a week. Division two contains nine teams while divisions three and four are made up of less experienced players playing with low compression balls.

Seven teams will play in the Kiwi division – catering for the much younger players at the beginning of their tennis-playing years. They play on half-sized courts using mini nets.

A drop-in tennis coaching programme is also run by the Marlborough Tennis Club between 9am and 10am on Saturday mornings over the summer and this looks after the younger players not involved in the competition aged from 3 to 7 years. There is no need to register for this, just show up on the day. The cost is $2 per player and it starts on October 31.

The primary school competition starts with a grading day on Saturday, October 17, and then resumes with round one on October 31. It will break for Christmas on December 12 and resume after the school holidays. Thirteen schools have entered teams into the competition.

College Competition

A doubles competition for College students (of all abilities) is being run on Friday evenings, with an initial grading day on Friday, October 16. Players must register for this competition, for more information contact Hilary on [email protected].   Entry to this completion has not yet closed.

Monday College Social Tennis

The popular Monday College Social tennis will continue again this summer from 4.30pm-6pm each Monday afternoon starting on October 12. Beginners are welcome. Coaching is included to help players improve their skills. No pre-registration is needed, players just need to show up on Monday afternoons to sign-up.

It was a highly-successful weekend in Auckland for Marlborough tennis player Jade Otway. Photo: Supplied. 

Jade breaks through

Marlborough’s rising tennis talent, Jade Otway, picked up her first ITF [International Tennis Federation] singles win at the weekend.

The 17-year-old won both the singles and the doubles titles at the world junior J5 tournament staged in Auckland.

She went unbeaten during the event, which ran from September 20-26, teaming up with Abbey Mason in the doubles where they were top seeds.

Both the singles and doubles finals were played on Saturday. In the singles Jade beat sixth seed Elyse Tse 7-6, 6-1, then won the doubles title 6-0, 6-1 over Charlotte and Elyse Tse.

In the first round of the singles, for which she was seeded No 2, she downed Ruby Young 6-0, 6-2, then beat Juliane Gillespie 6-0, 6-0 in the next round and Renee Zhang 6-3, 6-2 in the semis.

Sixth seed Elyse Tse overcame singles top seed Vivian Yang 6-1, 6-4 in the other semi.

Jade is currently ranked 333rd worldwide.

Jade Otway had a superb weekend, winning all her matches. Photo: Peter Jones.

Tasman tennis team in action

Tasman’s top tennis talent held their own at the South Island Teams event played at Wilding Park, Christchurch on August 29-30.

Teams from Canterbury, Canterbury Country, Otago and Tasman contested the event which ran on Saturday and Sunday.

Representing Marlborough in the Tasman team were Jade Otway, Hamish Morrow and Hamish McRae.

Jade Otway was the star of the weekend winning all six of her matches.

First up on Saturday, Tasman lost 4-8 to the host side, Canterbury: Otway beat Ruby Young 6-3 6-0 combined with Simon Phillips in the mixed to claim a 7-5, 7-6 victory. Morrow and McRae teamed up in the men’s double, but went down 5-7, 0-6.

Tasman also had a tough battle during their second game on Saturday, losing 8-4 to Otago. Otway went two-from-two again, beating Ayesha Horley 6-1, 6-0 and then teaming up with Morrow to take out the mixed 6-2, 6-0. McRae went down to Mitchell Sizemore in a third set tiebreaker 5-7, 0-6, 10-5.

On Sunday, Tasman won three of the four doubles to come back and beat Canterbury Country by one set after matches were tied at 6-6.

Otway was again in top form, downing Tessa Mccann 7-6, 6-0 then taking out her mixed with Zac Lyttle 6-4, 6-4.

Morrow claimed a vital win in the singles, beating Rhys Cromie 6-2, 6-3, and then combined with Simon Phillips in the top doubles to clinch the win over Country and finish the weekend on a high, the pair winning 7-6, 6-0.

Marlborough player Oscar Parkinson reaches high to attempt a forehand return during his doubles match with brother Felix against Joe Yank and Will Poff last weekend. Photo: Peter Jones.

Tennis juniors battle for titles

The Marlborough Tennis Association hosted the New World Blenheim Marlborough Junior Winter Open on July 11-12, one of the first junior tournaments to occur since lockdown.

Despite being held amid school holiday activities a strong turnout from locals and visitors enjoyed superb weather conditions and tight competition at the Forrest Winery Marlborough Tennis Centre.

The girls open division saw some high-quality tennis. The singles final featured Cantabrians Nishitha Maarka, the top seed, and Lily Mcharg. Maarka took out the title 6-2, 6-1 and then the pair combined to win the doubles title over Marlborough players Grace Howard and Ella Sowman, who fought hard but eventually lost 6-4, 6-3.

The boys open division singles title was won convincingly by Nelson and NZ representative Harry Pugh, while local brothers Oscar and Felix Parkinson claimed the doubles title.

North Island visitor Annabel Chapman went through six matches in total undefeated, claiming the girls 12 and under singles title over Emmeline Gale and then combining with Dallas Ehau to win the doubles.

The 12 and under boys grade saw close matches and long games.  Mathew Campbell from Dunedin won the final over Eejin Tay and then combined with Anzac Robinson-Hawkins to win the doubles over the local duo of Elijah O’Donnell and Sid Yank.

In the 10 and 12 under girls section a mixed division was created. Bessie Barry from West Coast won the final against Aviva Kurtovic 6-3, 6-0.

The 10 and under boys comprised a nine-strong field and also featured some  lengthy matches. Jake Karathra survived a marathon two-hour semi-final, then took out the singles title 4-1, 4-0 over Frank Mcharg. He also won the doubles, combining with Zac Fleming to defeat Santiago Brozzo and Nick Rayner in a tense final 5-4, 5-4.

The 8 and 10 under boys joined some 10-year-olds in a special division. Vatsal Maarka defeated Samuel Gale to claim the 8s title and locals Kobe Hart and Charlie Clark played the final, Kobe defeating Charlie 5-3, 4-1.

Hugh Robinson and Donna Clark won the mixed doubles title. Photo: Supplied. 

Residential tennis titles claimed

Marlborough’s residential tennis champions in singles, doubles and mixed doubles have finally been decided.

Weather delays meant the doubles were postponed from December to March 15, while the singles were played in mid-December and the mixed doubles on March 8.

Hamish McRae picked up both the men’s singles title and the doubles crown, alongside Hamish Morrow. Eveline Apthorp claimed the women’s singles title while Donna Clark and Pauline Fudge took out the women’s doubles.

Clark bagged her second 2019-20 residential title in the mixed final, alongside Hugh Robinson.



Men’s residential singles (December 7, 2019). Semifinals: Oscar Parkinson defeated Oscar Sanford-Jury 2-6 6-2 10-7; Hamish McRae defeated Ant Walkenhorst 0-6 7-6 10-8 – both matches completed over two days due to rain. Final: McRae defeated Parkinson 6-0, default.

Men’s residential doubles (March 15, 2020). Semifinals: Hamish Morrow and Hamish McRae defeated Brendan Sutherland and Owen Dodson 6-2 6-3; Hugh Robinson and Glen Cameron defeated Paddy Lankshear and Warner Nichol 6-1 6-1. Final: Morrow and McRae defeated Robinson and Cameron 6-2 4-6 6-3.

Women’s residential singles (December 7, 2019). Eveline Apthorp won the singles after defeating Ella Sowman 6-3 2-6 10-4.

Women’s residential doubles (March 15, 2020). Semifinals: Donna Clark and Pauline Fudge defeated Caroline Cornelius and Anna Simpson 6-0 6-1; Eveline Apthorp and Lyn Murray defeated Ella Sowman and Grace Howard 6-0 6-3. Final: Clark and Fudge defeated Apthorp and Murray 7-6 7-5.

Mixed residential doubles (March 8, 2020). Final: Hugh Robinson and Donna Clark defeated Eveline Apthorp and Glen Cameron 6-4 6-1.

The winning President's Grade division one combination, from left, Warner Nicol, Eveline Apthorp, Lynn Murray and Hugh Robinson. Photo: Supplied.

President’s grade tennis titles decided

The 2020 WK+ Presidents Grade tennis competition wound up on Tuesday night with four closely-fought finals on the Forrest Marlborough Tennis Centre courts, the last matches being played under lights.

In division one a tight battle ensued between the Rapaura Masters team of Donna Clark, Pauline Fudge, Tony Fenemor and Hiro Kishida, against their clubmates Rapaura Wairau River, comprising Lynn Murray, Eveline Apthorp, Hugh Robinson and Warner Nicol.

The straight doubles were shared, Clark and Fudge prevailing 9-7 over Murray and Apthorp, then Robinson and Nicol beating Fenemor and Kishida 9-4. The mixed were also shared, but a 9-1 win to Robinson and Apthorp over Fenemor and Fudge gave Wairau Wines a decisive edge in games won. Although Clark and Kishida downed Nicol and Murray 9-6 the overall outcome was a 31-23 win to Wairau River on countback.

Division two was won in decisive fashion by Renwick Netsetters who beat MTC Roger Townley Construction 4-0. However, the overall score did not reflect the closeness of the games, which went Netsetters’ way 9-7, 9-8, 9-4 and 9-7. The winning team comprised Luan Muir, Caroline Cornelius, Adam Balasoglou and Anthony Bowron.

There was also a close tussle in division three where Rapaura Matadors took on MTC Tennis the Menace. Matador came out 3-1 victors after winning both the straight doubles and sharing the mixed. The winning team comprised Karen Nicol, Jenny Stark, Mark Wheeler and Peter Jones.

Division four was taken out by the Renwick Serve us a Double! combination who downed clubmates Rapaura Shiraz 4-0. The winning team was Bronwyn Keown, Anna Simpson, Malcolm Walshe and Jason Anderson.