The Lae Tennis Club (LTC) will be hosting the Panamax Lae Tennis Open 2023, from the 9-12th of June 2023, at the Lae Golf Club in Morobe Province.
President of the Lae Tennis Club, Mr. Glenn Cabasug said this is the second year that LTC in partnership with Panamex Pacific (PNG) LTD, are hosting this tournament.
Initially held in May last year, the LTC have moved the date to the next available long weekend in the month of June, to provide more time for matches given the limitations at the Lae Golf Club.
“We will continue to ensure it remains the major tournament in our tennis calendar every year. “ The 2022 tournament saw 5 separate events held, including the Opens, Women’s Open, Under 19 boys and girls & Masters. This year 2023 will see the addition of Opens Doubles.
“This is to provide an extra incentive not only for our Lae players, but especially for our visiting participants from other centers, to play in both Singles and Doubles events and making their trip to Lae, more worthwhile.”
The Panamax Lae Tennis Open will, for the first time, see LTC utilize the Tournament Software with the assistance of PNG Tennis.
This is a system that is already been used by the Port Moresby Racquets Club and it is a software, which provides for managing, recording and providing real-time updates of all draws and matches throughout the tournament that can be viewed online anywhere in the world with internet connection.
The specifics of the Panamax Lae Tennis Open are as follows;
• • 6 main events are offered:
OPEN, WOMENS OPEN, BOYS U19, GIRLS U19, MASTER 50+ and OPEN DOUBLES.
• All draws will have the standard Main Draw and Plate Draw as consolation for those who lose their first matches.
• Matches will start from Friday evening, morning to evenings of Saturday and Sunday, and finally Finals in the afternoon of Monday •
• A player can participate in a maximum of 3 events. •
• Juniors are K10 only, Adults – K50 first event, K30 second event, K20 third event.
• • Deadline of the Player Registration Form is on Wednesday, May 31, 2023. LTC President mentioned that they are aiming to surpass the total entries from last years of 37 players.
“In Lae, we have our existing and new club members, who are excited to participate.
This includes an increasing number of our junior players, who have progressed through our LTC Junior Development Program.”
Among the Lae players, the LTC is also anticipating the return of all the 2022 champions to defend their titles.
“We expect some strong challenges coming from our visitors from Port Moresby for both the senior and junior players, some of whom are current PNG Representatives. “
Mr. Cabasug also revealed that the organizing committee have been in contact also with other centers and have received some positive interest from Goroka, New Tribes Mission and SIL.
“We will look forward to providing an update once we have confirmation from all centers we have reached out to.”
The tournament will also be graced with the participation of two PNG Tennis Legends; Mr. George Barakat and Mr. Vikram Tikari.
“For many of us we would recall them from the 80s and 90s. George, who is based in Lae, represented PNG in the Arafura Games / Darwin, South Pacific Games / Noumea, Tonga, Fiji, Port Moresby, and won many tournaments in the Highlands, Islands, Morobe,
Port Moresby and PNG Opens. He continues to train, play and coach to this day.
Vikram, who is based in Goroka, had his share of glory in the 80s; PNG Junior Champion, PNG Open, and represented PNG to the Mini Games in Cook Islands.
It is great to see them join, not only to support our tournament, but to have a chance to play against our younger generation of tennis stars in PNG.”
The organizers have extended their gratitude to Erich Illemann and major sponsor, Panamax Pacific (PNG) Limited for their continued support this year in hosting the tournament.
“Not only are they sponsoring our Lae Open, but they continue to sponsor our Team Tournaments held twice a year. Panamex has also provided much needed logistical support for our Juniors Team whilst in Port Moresby for both the POM Open 2022 and the recently held PNG Junior Tennis Open 2023.
Erich will also be spearheading this year’s Open as the Tournament Director.”
The organizers also acknowledged and thanked Scott Golden and the Lae Golf Club & Barbara Stubbings of PNG Tennis, for their continued support in helping revive and grow tennis in Lae and their assistance in hosting this year’s tournament.