Written by: Christopher Simnett
***Chris grew up playing tennis in B.C. and was ranked as high as No. 2 provincially in the U12 and U16 divisions. He played in two junior national championships in the 80s. Now 39 years old, he is the “community champion” for the Tennis Canada Building Tennis Communities strategy in Airdrie, AB, where he lives with his wife and eight-year-old son. Chris spent 15 years as a journalist writing about sports for newspapers in B.C. and Alberta. He now works in public relations in Calgary. To learn more about Chris and his blog, please visit www.alltennis.ca***
Unseeded Daniel Wolfman won the U12 boys’ title at the Capilano Jr. Champs tournament in Edmonton on the weekend, defeating the top three seeds along the way. Wolfman defeated second-seed Maximillian Szczypien 6-4, 3-6, 13-11 in the championship match. Earlier, Wolfman edged top-seed Danny Wu 1-6, 6-2, 10-7 in the semifinals.
Szczypien defeated unseeded Matush Polakovic 6-2, 6-2 in the other semifinal.
Polakovic knocked out fourth-seed Miguel Gonzalez 6-3, 6-1 in the quarter-final round while Wolfman, a one-man seed planting machine in the tournament, took out third seed Ryan Loke 6-4, 6-4 in the quarter-finals.
Top-seed Akhil Mehta of Edmonton won the boys’ U16 title at the Capilano Jr. Champs tournament on May 15.
Mehta defeated second-seed Harrison Scott 7-5, 3-6, 6-3 in the final. Earlier, Mehta defeated unseeded Jeffrey James 6-3, 6-7(9), 6-2 in the semifinals, blasted Austin Vrabel 6-0, 6-0 in the quarter-final and defeated Jerrod Parker 6-3, 6-2 in the first round.
James eliminated fourth-seed Vuk Radovic 7-5, 6-4 in the quarter-finals.
Scott edged fourth-seed Alexander Berdnikoff 7-6, 7-6 in the other semifinal.
In girls’ action, top-seed Jena Cheng of Edmonton romped through the U16 draw, defeating second-seed Mikaela Bennett of Calgary 7-5, 6-1 in the final. Earlier, Cheng thumped Alexia Lombardi 6-1, 6-1 in the first round and took out Kelsi Oliphant 6-1, 6-1 in the semifinals.
Bennett defeated unseeded Claire Koke 6-2, 4-6, 6-0 in the other semifinal.
Calgary’s Kiko Cunningham, the second-seed, defeated top-seed Ashleigh Jacobs of High River 6-2, 6-0 in the U12 girls’ final. Cunningham defeated Maya Dukaric 6-1, 7-5 in the one semifinal while Jacobs defeated Marina Culo 6-0, 6-2 in the other.