Canterbury record-holder wins third world tennis title in Spain

Peter Hampton and Australian partner Ros Balodis won the mixed doubles over 65s in Mallorca at...
Peter Hampton and Australian partner Ros Balodis won the mixed doubles over 65s in Mallorca at the ITF Masters World Individual Championships. Photo: Supplied
One of Canterbury’s most successful tennis players Peter Hampton has won his third world title after clinching gold in the mixed doubles over 65s at the International Tennis Federation (ITF) Masters World Individual Championships in Mallorca, Spain.

Hampton, 66, holds the record for the most wins (215) in premier tennis interclub in Canterbury during a career which spanned 45 years. 

He has reached the top level at club, regional, national and now international masters level. One highlight of his career was playing in the French Open doubles in 1980. 

His national record is impeccable, having won 38 masters and seven junior titles in New Zealand.

In the final in Spain, Hampton and his Australian partner Ros Balodis won 6-4 6-0 over the French pairing of Benedicte Le Grand and Marc Renoult who have won the title for the past two years. 

John Lawrence of Auckland and his doubles partner Rosemary Everett of Victoria won the bronze medal in the mixed doubles. 

Hampton also reached the quarter finals of the men’s over 65s doubles with his Australian partner Michael Ford.

“The masters was a strong tournament with most players on the current ITF ranking list playing in the worlds,” said Hampton.

Hampton and Balodis, who have been playing together since 2019, have also won the Australian Championships and the Oceania Championships on the masters circuit this year.

In their first season together, they won the world mixed doubles over 60s title at the championships in Portugal. In the same year, Hampton won the men’s doubles title with Ford.

Other New Zealand results at the world championships included Sue Jamieson of Tauranga winning a bronze medal in the women’s 70s doubles. 

Cashmere’s Dave Meredith reached the third round of the main draw in singles and the second round of the men’s doubles for over 75s. 

Other Canterbury players Eveline McLeod, Phil Crozier and Gavin Dunn were knocked out in the early rounds.

Paddy Ou and Charlie Byers are leading the way for Waimairi’s premier tennis teams. PHOTO: LINDA...
Paddy Ou and Charlie Byers are leading the way for Waimairi’s premier tennis teams. PHOTO: LINDA ROBERTSON
Imports boost Waimairi premier ranks
Two of Otago’s top players are boosting Waimairi’s premier tennis teams who play neighbouring Elmwood in the local derby at Elmwood this weekend.

Paddy Ou will fill the top slot in the combined Edgeware Waimairi men’s team and Charlie Byers, an outstanding junior, is the Waimairi women’s top player. The women’s competition is on Friday night and the men’s is on Saturday afternoon at host club courts.

Elmwood’s general manager Ashley Forbes is expecting a good crowd for both matches. “We have always enjoyed a healthy rivalry on court with Waimairi,” he said.

“We are both strong clubs and our premier teams enjoy good support from our members which we expect again this weekend.” 

Ou and Byers won their singles last week. Although Edgeware Waimairi lost to Burnside Park 2-4, Ou beat Burnside Park’s Finn Emslie Robson 6-4 7-6, while Byers was in scorching form to beat Shirley’s Nishitha Maarka 6-2 6-2 in Waimairi’s convincing win over Shirley.

Ou and Byers are the title holders in the men’s and women’s championships of the Otago Indoor Open, played in September, after which Byers played in the International Tennis Federation tournaments in Auckland and Christchurch.

Edgeware Waimairi have a tough task against the experienced Elmwood men’s team, who also have the advantage of their home courts.

Elmwood made light work of Te Kura Hagley last week, winning all their singles and doubles matches, whereas Edgeware Waimairi’s two wins in their loss to Burnside Park were restricted to their top two singles players – Ou and Charlie Bradbury, a coach from the United Kingdom who is based in Christchurch for the summer.

Burnside Park, a team stacked with talent and headed by coach Remi Feneon, also have a home game this weekend against neighbours, Bishopdale. 

The Burnside Park team includes players from last year’s South Brighton team – Jordan Edwards, Emilio Gonzaga and St Andrew’s College student Ricky Kotepong. Bishopdale’s Grayson Cullen and James Wilson both won their singles last week against

Cashmere, who clinched both doubles with the inclusion of Brendan Furness, a former Canterbury player who is now based in Auckland.

In the women’s draw Waimairi have started the season strongly with their 5-1 over Shirley, the new team to the competition. They have a sterner challenge this week against Elmwood, who have a large pool of highly ranked players to call on.

Elmwood’s top player Louise Oxnevad was all class in her team’s 4-2 win over Cashmere. However, Cashmere showed plenty of fight with the hard-hitting Ruby McPhail winning her singles and their top doubles pairing also winning.

Cashmere this week play last year’s competition winners Te Kura Hagley, who suffered a 1-5 loss last weekend to Bishopdale, a young team which includes Aliyah Daly, who won the under 12s Tennis New Zealand junior masters in October.

Bishopdale will play Shirley whose only win against Waimairi last weekend was in the top doubles with team captain Ally McConnell combining with Maarka.

By Diane Keenan