A field of just over 50 competitors might not seem all that newsworthy, at first glance. But when initial projections targetted 30 or so athletes, and you are in the midst of re-introducing an event that hasn't been hosted locally in more than 20 years, the numbers are definitely reason to celebrate.
Such was the mood at the Sudbury Indoor Tennis Centre a few weeks back as club organizers welcomed a wide array of court talent to Sudbury for the Northern Ontario Tennis Classic.
Given the numbers and court availability at the facility adjacent to Queen's Athletic Field, the decision was made to run solely doubles' events, with teams slotted into various brackets depending on their NTRP (National Rating Tennis Program) rankings, or a best-effort basis to simulate the same.
Devoting the time to compete in a pair of events, the team of Adrian Catahan (North Bay) and Bryce Bodak (Burlington) swept top spot in both the Men's 9.0 division, as well as the Junior Boys U18 draw.
Local siblings Akshay and Andrew Varghese captured first in Men's 7.0, the latter getting ready to try and duplicate his silver medal performance at OFSAA (high-school division) one year ago.
Frank Marasco (Sudbury) and Richard Fleming (Sault Ste Marie) grabbed bragging rights in the Men's 6.0 grouping, while the Men's 70+ age category would allow a creative approach of using three players to a doubles team (only two on the court at a time), with Bill Paden, Miro Ejem and Gerry Braunsteiner, all from Sudbury, finishing first.
Over on the women's draw, the local pairing of Leigh Dodds and Kristi Arnold prevailed in Women's 6.0, while Sudburians Sandra Curlook and Elaine Kreke did the same in the 7.0 segment.
Following are top two finishers, plus consolation winners (if applicable), in all categories:Men 9.0
1st - Adrian Catahan/Bryce Bodak
2nd - Cliff Richardson/Paul Biron
Cons - Moon Jin Suen/Chris Fazekas
1st - Akshay Varghese/Andrew Varghese
2nd - Jim Kolar/Louis Garon
Cons - Neil Lind/Jeff Morton
1st - Frank Marasco/Richard Fleming
2nd - Frank Doni/Seamus Magnus
Cons - Pierre Gagnon/Sean McShane
1st - Bill Paden/Miro Ejem/Gerry Braunsteiner
2nd - Bill Suhay/Barry Roberts/Bob Susil
Junior Boys - U18
1st - Bryce Bodak/Adrian Catahan
2nd - Tyler Sampson/David Houle
1st - Leigh Dodds/Kristi Arnold
2nd - Nicole Ament/Alana Holmes
Cons - Nicole Paquette/Sara Capagnaro
1st - Sandra Curlook/Elaine Kreke
2nd - Linda George/Isabelle Leduc
Tournament organizer Neil Lind also took time to provide a shout-out to major tournament sponsor, Eacom Timber Corporation, as well as acknowledging the valuable support of Belanger Ford, Schneider Electric, the City of Greater Sudbury, Snagged Internet Services, Canadian Tire (Chelmsford), Union Gas, Buzzy Brown's and Hardrock 42.