Soggy weekend conditions didn’t dampen the mood at the 86th annual Hankey Cup Doubles Tennis Championships at the Kalamalka Country Club.
Spectators were entertained by some high-calibre tennis as more than 70 participants came from Vancouver, Calgary and the Interior. The event included the men’s and women’s A and B doubles, and mixed A and B doubles, with teams guaranteed a minimum three matches in the round-robin format.
“What can we say about the weather?” said Ray Kimoto, tournament director. “We were very fortunate to get through the matches the first day, but we made it.”
It was an all-Vernon showdown in the men’s A final, with Dean Kimoto and Todd Semeniuk of the Kalamalka club sweeping Craig Tilander and Mike Knights, 6-2, 6-3.
In the semifinals, Kimoto and Semeniuk overwhelmed Paul Morgan (Vernon) and Winston Pain (Salmon Arm), 6-2, 6-0, while Tilander and Knights turned back Doug Holman (Vancouver) and Bob Langford (Salmon Arm), 6-4, 6-4.
In the B pool, the Vernon duo of Steve Benesh (Kal) and George Sousa brushed back Curtis Hamilton and Dave Bailie, both of Penticton, 6-4, 6-3.
In the semis, Benesh and Sousa stopped Joel dePfyffer (Kelowna) and Mike dePfyffer (Vernon), 6-5, 6-2, while Hamilton and Bailie turned back Joe Groves and Asher Yakony, both of Kelowna, 6-2, 6-4.
In women’s action, Meryl Ogden (Vernon) and Rosie Schaich (Kelowna) outlasted the Vernon tandem of Eva Koksalova and Hailey Crampton in the most exciting match of the day, 4-6, 6-4, 10-7. Third place went to the Kal club duo of Anne Ellis and Sandra Liedl.
In the B final, the Penticon team of Sharon Brownell and Mary Wu grounded Cynthia Langford and Judith Heunis, both of Salmon Arm, 6-3, 6-5.
In the semis, Brownell and Wu defeated Vernon’s Lynne Smith and Judi McIntosh, 6-2, 6-2, while Langford and Heunis turned aside their Salmon Arm clubmates, Maria Van Buskirk and Supha Phonchiangwang 6-5, 6-4.
Ogden and Knights cruised to a straight sets victory (6-0, 6-3) over Koksalova and Tilander to take the Mixed A title.
In the semis, Ogden and Knights iced Rosie and Joe Schaich of Kelowna 6-2, 6-3, while Koksalova and Tilander swept Lyse Tremblay and Dan Albrecht, both of Kelowna, 6-0, 6-0.
In the B bracket, the Vancouver sister-brother team of Susan and Ben Moxon turned back Liedl (Vancouver, Wash.) and Gordon Mann (Vernon), 6-1, 6-2.
The Moxens advanced to the final by toppling the Kamloops duo of Jan Newlove and Randy Heslop, 6-2, 6-1. Liedl and Mann earned their finals berth with a 6-3, 6-1 decision over Kelowna youngsters Taylor Charron and Brandon Czaja.
“Congratulations to all the winners and participants, who were provided with snacks and lunches for the three days and a social barbecue for Sunday evening,” said Kimoto.
“Thank you to the spectators who came out throughout the three days to watch some great tennis at the Kalamalka Country Club.”
Kimoto thanked his hard-working committee of Gordon Mann, Benesh and Dave Valouch for their contribution, grounds keeper Tony Bastian for all his help, Max Voets Coffee Roasting for supplying the coffee, and Centre Court Racquets of Victoria for the door prizes.