17 April 2009
The 2009 University Games wrapped up in Hawera after 3 days of fantastic tennis weather. Friday was finals day and also playoff positions were decided as every position counts for points in determining the top university. According to tournament controller, Andrew Baylis, the competitors were a fantastic bunch of young men and women, extremely well behaved and were enjoying their time in the Naki.
Sam Vinton-Boot got the ball rolling for VIC by taking out the men's singles defeating Blair O'Brien (AKL). The match was even in the early stages but then Vinton-Boot started playing powerful and exquisitely placed ground strokes that kept O'Brien at the back of the court. Vinton-Boot eventually took out the title and the gold medal, winning 9-4. Taranaki's Zachary Wills (VIC) won the bronze medal defeating Andrew Kemp (AKL) 9-8(6) is a gruelling encounter.
Vinton-Boot and Wills combined to win the men's doubles gold medal defeating O'Brien and Kemp. Matthew Cutfield/Nick Hammond (AKL) won the bronze medal defeating Vincent Baylis/Ryan Stockman (Massey; and Taranaki).
The top two seeds met in the women's singles final. Rebecca Lee and Wendy Owen (both AUT) had been impressive in their matches going into the final. Wendy Owen had the early advantage and led 5-3 before Lee peeled off 3 straight games and led 6-5. Lee then mixed consistency together with the ability to punish the short ball and was able to hold off the courageous Webb, 9-7. The 3rd place playoff match saw the exact same score as the men's equivalent, Aditi Rai (AKL) defeating Hanna Baxter (VIC) 9-8(6).
Webb and Owen combined to win the women's doubles gold medal match. Rachael Leong/Ying Swan Ong won the bronze medal match defeating Carmia Schoeman/Lydia Burnett (AKL).
Overall points for University Tennis were:
Men: AKL 86, VIC 84, Massey PN 37, WIT 12.
Women: AKL 67, AUT 50, Massey PN 30, VIC 24.
Final positions were:
|9th||Ying Swan Ong||AKL|
|16th||Azra Elia Zamri||AKL|