The Chelmer St grass courts were a hive of activity at Labour Weekend, hosting the annual North Otago masters tennis tournament.

The tournament, held on Saturday and Sunday, attracted players from across the South Island – with entries from Blenheim, Dunedin, Christchurch, Timaru, Queenstown and Waimate – and there was also strong local representation, tournament controller Peter Simpson said.

The tournament has been running for about 20 years, and Simpson said it always attracted a mix of new and returning players. This year’s entries were up on the previous two years, and they were “extremely blessed with the weather”, he said.

Oamaru’s grass courts were some of the best in New Zealand and were always a drawcard for the tournament.

“People like playing on the grass – that’s key,” he said.

“You might get some funny old bounces, but it’s much easier on the body and that’s what older people find great.”


A Grade (women)

Final: Angela Fitzgerald (Dunedin) and Belinda Hirst (Oamaru) beat Willa Faber and Debbie Stevens (Dunedin) 6-1, 6-0

Combined 120-plus (women)

Final: Judith Wallace (Oamaru) and Eveline van der Linden (Blenheim) beat Kaye Kirk and Heather Hume (Timaru) 6-3, 6-0

B Grade (women)

Final: Stephanie Black and Kerry Packer (Oamaru) beat Cathy Aitken (Oamaru) and Phil McMaster (Waimate) 6-4, 6-0

A Grade (men)

Winners: Tony Hawker and James Callaghan (Christchurch)

Combined 120-plus (men)

Final: Peter Meehan and Alex Abadie (Dunedin) beat Paul Fitzgibbon and Russell Hancox (Dunedin) 6-2, 6-4

B Grade (men)

Winners: Jon Saxton (Oamaru) and George Carnoutsos (Christchurch)

A Grade (mixed doubles)

Final: Glen Claridge and Belinda Hirst (Oamaru) beat Saul Moore and Debbie Stevens (Dunedin) 6-1, 6-3

Combined 120-plus (mixed doubles)

Malcolm Strang and Lynne Hodges (Timaru) beat Jim Sampson (Blenheim) and Phil McMaster (Waimate) 6-1 7-5

Combined 135-plus (mixed doubles)

Winners: Peter Meehan and Janet Sime (Dunedin)

B Grade (mixed doubles) Winners: Anthonie de Heer (Christchurch) and Judith Wallace (Oamaru)Running sport mediaAIR MAX PLUS