The formal opening is later this month, but the two Classic Clay courts that make up the new Waikiki Tennis Club are now open to the public at the Pacific Beach Hotel.
The courts were constructed on the eighth floor of the Ocean Tower, over the old hardcourts. They are run by the hotel and USTA Hawaii Pacific Section. Former Hawaii Pacific All-American Hendrick Bode is head pro.
The synthetic clay is manufactured in Australia and courts are guaranteed 10 years. The surface is soft, emphasizing shotmaking over power and making it easier on the joints. It is also easy on tennis balls and shoes and slower than most Hawaii courts, promoting longer rallies.
The courts are playable in light rain and maintenance consists mostly of raking. There are more than 600 Classic Clay courts worldwide.
Cost to rent a court is $20 an hour for up to four kamaaina, $25 for Pacific Beach guests and $30 for visitors. Private and group lessons are also available.
Contact Bode at 206-6735 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit thewaikikitennisclub.com for information.
Baron wins doubles
Hawaii’s Shelby Baron, a 16-year-old traveling out of the country for the first time, won the doubles title and reached the singles semifinals at the Taipei Open wheelchair tournament earlier this month. The ITF adult tournament was played at the Taipei Arena. It was Baron’s first Open competition.
Baron earned ITF world ranking points by teaming with Thailand’s Sirimat Traiphueak to take doubles, 7-5, 6-4, over Taipei’s Chia-Yi Lu and Yi-Shan Wu. Baron also won her first two rounds in singles before falling to Traiphueak, 7-5, 6-1.
Baron, a Punahou student, trains with able-bodied players in USTA Hawaii’s Junior Team Tennis program.
Challenger event returns
The 2011 Honolulu Challenger, a $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit event, will be Jan. 23-30 at the Patsy T. Mink CORP Tennis Complex.
The Wild Card Tournament is Jan. 15-16.
In its inaugural year, the tournament drew 62 players from 24 countries, ranked between 90 and 241 in the world. The champion was American Michael Russell. Kevin Anderson, from South Africa, and American Ryler DeHeart took the doubles title.
University of Hawaii senior Dennis Lajola, from Aiea, earned a place in the main draw by winning the Hawaii Sectional on Oct. 30.
Admission is free.
USPTA awards announced
Rusty Dyer was named Professional of the Year at the annual U.S. Professional Tennis Association Hawaii convention, held this month at Waialae Country Club.
The USPTA Hawaii Division recipients also included: Rookie of the Year — David Lam; Volunteer of the Year — Tiffany Akiyama; Special Recognition — Max Velasco Jr.; Community Service — Cheryl Shrum; Senior Player of the Year — Max Pavon; Open Player of the Year — Leilani Magee; High School Coach of the Year — Bernard Gusman, Punahou School; College Coach of the Year — John Nelson, University of Hawaii; Facility of the Year — The Oahu Club; and Assistant Professional of the Year — Joe Curcio.
2 Hawaii teams win
Two teams from Hawaii won and another placed second at the WTT Rec League nationals earlier this month in Indian Wells, Calif. There were 59 teams from 17 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico competing in 11 divisions. The WTT format is coed, with each team having a minimum of four players.
Hana Hou of Waipahu, captained by Clyde Miyasato, captured the 3.5 division, going unbeaten in five round-robin matches. Team Hawaii of Honolulu beat a team from Pennsylvania to win the 4.0 title. Michael Young was captain. Central Oahu of Mililani was the runner-up in the Senior 4.0 Division. Leonard Loventhal was captain.