THE first sporting event for 2019, the Voyager Open Tennis Championship serves off on Thursday 3rd January at the Kenneth “Wriggler” King Multipurpose Court affectionately known as the George V Park, the Gardens. The championship is organised by Tiger InFlow Tennis Academy under the watchful eyes of former national tennis player Sirsean Arlain in collaboration with GO! Insect Repellent.
According to Sirsean Arlain, this is the fifth edition of the championship. It has always been a player favorite and is proving so as we see many of our local players returning to the fold.
The 5th annual championship will see players compete in the 12 and under all the way up to the Veterans category.
Sirsean said, “We also see the return of the past champion Akeem Gustave as he hopes to conquer the field once again.”
“Gustave will undoubtedly face some stiff competition as the field has grown and there are more than a few threats lurking in this field of players. Jean-Phillippe Murray played Gustave for over three hours and three grueling sets, so we know he wants revenge. We have a Hungry Max William lurking, not to mention a well-seasoned Tjimon Louisy who plays an attacking brand of tennis.” He noted.
Brent St. Catherine returns seeking his 4th Veterans title in five years; he has dominated this category. Jonathan Gladding, Cameron Moffat and Chris Hunte are all ready to wrestle it away from him. We are going to see players like Mc Gregor Mongroo, Zy Richards and Omodelle Philips pick up tennis racquets once again.
The Voyager Open boasts a blend of junior and senior players who will give tennis enthusiasts coming to take in the action, some entertaining battles moving forward.
Maxx William will head into the men’s division once again; he made the final and will try to do one better this year.
Some of the other juniors will also make the jump into the Open categories, such as: Andre Fontenelle, Navit Isaac, Aviona Edmund and Nadjema Morille.
Iesha Emile returns as a Women’s Finalist with the hopes of capturing the title in 2019.
Allain said, “The boys 18s look like another battle between Aidan Bousquet and Max William unless someone steps up to play spoiler. The girls 18s draw is wide open with players like Netanya Faissal hoping to keep her younger peers at bay to reclaim a title that was once hers.
In the Girls divisions, Iyana Paul, Alannah Bousquet, Briana Jn Baptiste, Jace Leon, Latoya Murray and Natasha Charles all set to compete.
Doing battle in the Boys Divisions are Peterson George, Ryan Nathaniel, Corey Charles, Kyle Anius and Arden Rosemond.
Meanwhile, Tjimon Louisy who is back on island for the holiday season spoke to the VOICE ahead of the Championship; Louisy is currently a senior at Florida Institute of Technology.
“I am going into this championship to gauge myself ahead of my tennis season in the USA; it is also a good opportunity to see what the local boys have to offer since I have been away from the local scene a few years now.” Said Louisy.
In terms of threats on centre court, Louisy was not prepared to put the cart before the horse, he said, “I haven’t seen everyone during practice, I have no idea who is still playing, and it’s not anything I am worried about, if you come out to beat me and play a good tennis match, you deserve to win.”
Its two different playing surface, the National Tennis Center in Beausejour and the Kenneth ‘Wriggler’ Tennis Court in George V Park. According to Louisy, the KWTC, allows for better tennis, you have to build your points at the NTC, a lot of shots can go for winners without any effort, the surface is a lot quicker; playing at the KWTC, you have to be patient.”