February eNews 
Otago Tournaments - Entry Link
Otago's Newest JDC Qualified Coach
Catching up with Taieri Tennis Club 
Tennis Otago Calendar 2023
Otago Officials Making Us Proud
Southern Junior Teams Team 
Otago Seniors' Championships 

Car Parks Available
STC Redevelopment - Stage 2

10 - 12 March - Highgate Partners Otago Open 2023 Enter Here

18 & 19 March - Highgate Partners Otago Junior Open 2023 Enter Here

In late 2021, I sat down with Bryce Hoffman keen to discuss his next steps for professional development as a Tennis Coach.  Bryce had spent the previous 8 years as an assistant coach, working his way up to being an excellent Hotshots specialist, but together we agreed it was time to support him to take the next steps on the qualification pathway.

M.A.T Tennis Coaching would like to congratulate Bryce Hoffman on completing his Junior Development Course (JDC) at the conclusion of 2022. This is recognised as an ITF Level 1 Qualification around the world. Passing this course makes Bryce the second Tennis New Zealand professionally qualified coach in M.A.T Tennis Coaching and in Otago.

M.A.T Tennis Coaching, along with all of Otago, would like to acknowledge and celebrate how very fortunate we all are to have a coach that shows such great passion, enthusiasm and dedication and now he has the qualification to prove he has the knowledge too! Every coaching session with Bryce is fun and he is a favourite with all the players he works with across Otago. 

Myself, my staff, the TNZ Coach Developer Team, along with Bryce's family, are very proud of Bryce’s achievement and look forward to what the future holds for him.

My warmest congratulations Bryce, you are a role model on and off the court.

Mat McCutcheon.
ABOVE: Hot Shots Green group from 2022

George recently got in touch with Taieri Tennis Club sectary Steve Wilson. Even though Steve is currently based in Germany, he is still making sure that the club admin has been running smoothly.  George wanted to know what the club has been doing to increase their membership.

George: What has the club seen in terms of growth in membership and participation numbers.

Steve: Our biggest growth has come from inspiring more children to get involved in tennis on the Taieri. From 2018/19 to 2020/21 we had an average of 18-20 children playing in Hot Shots. This season we've more than tripled that, to 66 kids! In regard to Senior and Junior members, after numbers consistently trending downwards for five seasons, our membership numbers have more than doubled! From our low point of 44 members in 2019/20, this season we currently have 99 members. We've also increased participation with new lessons for non-member adults.

George: What has and hasn't worked?

What has worked: 
  • Engaging with excellent coaches - Jaden Grinter and his assistant coaches have been pivotal to creating a fun and inspiring environment for players of all levels. 
  • Making the shift from Promato to ClubSpark has dramatically reduced admin time which means we can use that extra time to connect more with members, as well as create and refine other club offerings. 
  • Inspirational and passionate leaders within our committee and volunteers who get things done.
  • Offering free sessions to local schools before the start of the season to raise awareness of the awesomeness of tennis.
What hasn't worked: 
  • Making the shift to Book-A-Court to make court bookings easy for both members and non-members is a work in progress...
  • Increasing club sponsorships has been challenging, and we are in the process of revising this, in part thanks to feedback from Tennis Otago. 
George: How have you engaged with the schools/local community?
Read more here
  • 25 & 26 - Southern Open Teams Event
  • 4 - Interclub restarts for Men's Division 1
  • 10 - 12 - Highgate Partners Otago Open 2023
  • 18 & 19 - Highgate Partners Otago Junior Open 2023
  • 21 - Monday year 4 - 8 tennis coaching/competition finishes
  • 23 - Thursday school tennis finishes
  • 26 - Prizegiving and End of Season Event
  • 1 & 2 - Otago Seniors Champs
ABOVE: Officials at the 2023 ASB Classic in Auckland last month. Far left - Ahmad Abdul-Rahman; far right - Kavindra Wijenayake

2022 was an incredible year for Tennis Otago's growing pool of officials. It saw Phoebe Guille-Hughes qualify as a court supervisor, and we welcomed Luka Simmers to our team. Ahmad Abdul-Rahman was appointed as the Tournament Director at the 17U National Junior Teams Event in Wellington, and his son Ayoub Ahmad stepped up as Tournament Director at a series of local events before running the Ashburton Labour Weekend Junior Tournament - one of the biggest junior tournaments in the South Island.

In late 2022 a series of professional tour events were announced for Wellington and Tauranga to be held in December. Kavindra Wijenayake was selected to chair umpire at both the Wellington and Tauranga ITF World Tennis Tour events, with Ahmad selected to be a line umpire in Tauranga.

Ahmad and Kavindra were then both selected as line umpires at the ASB Classic in Auckland, which returned after a COVID-related break. It was Ahmad's first time working at the tournament, and while the rain put an unfortunate dampener on the experience, it was still thrilling to be on court with the best players in the world. Kavindra was not a stranger to the courts at "Stanley Street", and was rightly proud to have been selected to be a line umpire in his first WTA final.

Ahmad, Kavindra and the entire tournament team thank Tennis Otago for valuing the role that officials play in our sport, and for supporting the NZTUA officiating pathway.
18 & 19 FEBRUARY 2023
ABOVE: OTAGO 12s teams - Enya He-ren, Grace Spite, Ella Hammond, Neve Cutfield, Alban Boaden-Trotter, Oscar De Pelsemaeker, Yug Thapa, Connor Horne
On Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th February, the Southern Junior Teams Event took place in Dunedin. Similar to last November’s edition, the weather gods looked favourably upon the many Otago, Lakes, Southland and South Canterbury players, supporters, coaches and officials gathered at the Stevenson Tennis Centre at Logan Park and the Edgar Centre.

While the Southland team showed dominance in all age categories but the 14Us (where the event was won by the Lakes team), all the players in the Otago team put in a great effort and showed great sportsmanship.

After a rather tough (and early) Saturday morning start against the Southland squad at the Stevenson Tennis Centre, the Otago team bounced back in the afternoon, showing great stamina and competitive spirit during the tie against the Lakes team. Under a baking hot summer sun, the Otago 10Us won their tie against the Lakes team, while the Otago 12Us played some very exiting close matches, particularly in the doubles. With some of the matches going past 7.00pm and players and supporters from the host team and the travelling teams turning up in big numbers for the traditional Saturday Night Dinner, the first day of the event was a long, but fun-filled day.
Read more here
ABOVE: Members of the Otago team taking a break between ties

Saturday 1 April
Men's & Women's Doubles

Sunday 2 April
Mixed Doubles

Men's & Women's A, B, 60 years & over
Mixed A, B, 130 years & over

Edgar Centre, 116 Portsmouth Drive, Dunedin

Tournament Controllers:
Ian & Lindsey Moore, 03 476 1200,

Entry form available soon on the Tennis Otago website
If you or someone you know is looking for a carpark to lease in 2023, get in touch with George. Tennis Otago has a number of car parks available for lease now. Only $100 per calendar month.
With our application to Lotteries last year having been unsuccessful, it became clear that in order to have a realistic hope of completing stage 2, we would need to scale it back.

Scaling back the scope for stage 2 could provide Tennis Otago the opportunity to end up with the number of dedicated Tennis Courts we require, without having to provide for other codes on some of the courts.  This possible scenario became evident following a meeting Fraser and I had with Scott MacLean (DCC Group Manager Parks & Recreation) and John Brenkley (Planning & Partnerships Manager Parks & Recreation Services) last November.

For any application to Lotteries, we have an obligation to provide multi-sport opportunities.  By reducing our footprint to what we actually need, we would work with the DCC to satisfy Lotteries multi-sport requirement. Of course, this assumes we will be applying to Lotteries for funding.

We think this would be a more acceptable outcome for our Tennis Community and quite different to what we were proposing in last year’s Lotteries application.
In order to get things moving again, here are some key matters we need to focus on:
Read more here
Without our tennis volunteers, Tennis Otago simply could not survive.

If you think you have spare time and would like to assist Tennis Otago or a club in any way, please do not hesitate in contacting here at Tennis Otago.
Copyright © 2023 Tennis Otago Inc, All rights reserved.

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