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14 October 2020
By SARAH MATTHEWS
Central Wimmera Tennis Association leaders were rapt with Saturday’s 2020-21 season opener, as players enjoyed a long-awaited return to competitive sport.
Last season was cut short by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and association president Jeremy Quast said players were keen to make the most of easing restrictions.
“Everyone was excited to be out and about playing – I think everyone was just pleased to be able to play sport again and to be able to socialise,” he said.
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“I’m sure there were a few sore bodies on Sunday – mine included – because we haven’t had a chance to play tennis for so long.
“Despite the break we had some really good tennis throughout the day.
“I played at Haven and the atmosphere was fantastic. The beautiful weather also helped make it a very good day – it was just such a positive start to the season.”
Mr Quast praised participants’ behaviour in adhering to COVID-19 restrictions.
“We’ve been living through COVID for seven months now, so people know what to do,” he said.
“Everyone wore masks when they needed to, maintained their 1.5 metres, brought their own afternoon tea and so on and I don’t think it affected anyone’s day.
“I encourage everyone to keep up the good work.
“I know a lot of people in regional Victoria are wondering why we are still wearing masks, but until the State Government says otherwise, we will follow the rules.”
Mr Quast said he hoped the government would further ease restrictions to allow spectators in the near future.
He said a return to junior tennis on Saturday morning was also a success, with six extra junior teams competing this year.
Mr Quast said the association was establishing a strong pathway for juniors with the aim of encouraging longevity in the sport.
He said the senior competition also looked healthy, with all grades capable of producing hard-fought matches.
Kalkee and Horsham Lawn enjoyed the closest pennant contest of round one, with the Kees defeating Lawn 7-75 to 5-67.
Kalkee’s top two men, Jeff Friberg and Steve Schultz, led the way, winning three sets apiece, with Cherie Wood achieving the same feat for Lawn.
Drung South is the first team to sit on top of the ladder for the 2020-21 season after a comprehensive win over Homers, 11-93 to 1-32.
Nicole Zweck-Penhall and Jacqui Hopper joined forces to claim Homers’ only rubber in a tough day on the court.
St Michaels led from start to finish against Central Park, triumphing 12-96 to 0-36.
Holly Nuske and Barb Cough – on loan on a day clearance from St Michaels – almost managed to get a win for Central Park, however went down in a tie-breaker against Marli Pymer and Angela Nitschke.
St Michaels, a perennial powerhouse, will look to continue its strong early form when it welcomes Horsham Lawn on Saturday.
In other round-two pennant matches, Drung South will host Central Park and Homers will travel to Kalkee.
Players also contested matches in A Special, A, and B Special grades.
The entire October 14, 2020 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!