Launceston International ‘the best tournament so far’, Tennis Tasmania president says

Winner: Gabriella Taylor plays through the women's singles final at the Launceston International. Picture: Paul Scambler
Winner: Gabriella Taylor plays through the women's singles final at the Launceston International. Picture: Paul Scambler

Innovative, fresh and popular with crowds – the Launceston International received top marks from Tennis Tasmania president Phillip Bowden.

Hitting the sweet spot of excellent weather, new ideas, big crowds and international talent, the tournament was “without a doubt the best Launceston International we’ve had so far”, Bowden said.

He said international players had commented on the enthusiastic crowds.

“We had great crowd numbers, we’d always like to see more people come along … the standard of play in my view is equal to that of what you see at Melbourne Park at the Australian Open.

“These players are world-class, even though their rankings aren’t right up there, it’s wonderful entertainment, they’re real athletes.”

A welcome feature for this year, Bowden said, was an all-Australian mens final between victorious Marc Polmans and Bradley Mousley.

Combined with four Tasmanian male players making it to the qualifiers was a “very good effort” against international professional players.

Looking ahead, Bowden said tournament director Nicky Ristrom had brought through fresh and well-received ideas for the tournament’s future.

The next focus is establishing a permanent community clubhouse to reduce the amount of infrastructure carried in each year.

“We’re underway with the various stakeholders to be able to fund that for us, and we’re very positive that we’ll get that up and running soon,” he said.

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