This past weekend, Baha Mar served as the host to a thrilling junior tennis tournament. The IC Winterbotham Junior Series is an ongoing event created and run by Neil Mactaggart, Mickey Williams, Kit Spencer and Ivan Hooper (Winterbotham Bank and Trust).
The IC (International Club) is made up of people who are passionate about tennis and want to see it grow as both a sport and as a community effort. One of the IC’s goals is to create a fun, inclusive and competitive environment in which to develop young tennis players.
Throughout the event, there was a constant buzz of excitement from the competitors, as they each played five or six matches over the two and a half days of the tournament. Players, parents and spectators all expressed satisfaction and enjoyment about the positive, competitive and lively energy that was on display at the Baha Mar tennis courts.
The IC Winterbotham Junior Series has expressed gratitude to Baha Mar and its director of tennis Minos Miranakis for making this event a reality, and for the opportunity to use the spectacular courts at Baha Mar.
The competitors included top under-10 and under-12 tennis players in The Bahamas. Their enthusiasm for the game and camaraderie between one another was said to be inspiring to see.
The tournament culminated in exciting fashion with a down-to-the-wire finish in the under-12 boys division. Jackson Mactaggart outlasted Matthew Shapiro from Boca Raton, Florida, in three sets, winning, 7-6(9), 2-6 and 16-14, in the final match of the group of first place finishers from Saturday’s round-robins. Both players had multiple match points in the tie-breaking third set, and a high level of tennis was on display throughout the match.
In the under-10 girls division, Millie Beukes prevailed and Sarai Clarke was the runner-up. Jack Boals was the under-10 boys winner, and Gabin Chechin-Laurans was the runner-up. Saphirre Ferguson took the under-12 girls category and BreAnn Ferguson was the runner-up. As mentioned, Mactaggart prevailed in the under-12 boys division.
Alec Hooper won the Charlie Farrington Sportmanship Award for boys and Caylie Paine won that award among the girls. The Little Mo Kindness Award went to Matthew Stuby.
“The IC would like to again thank Winterbotham Trust for their generous sponsorship of this junior series, to the Little Mo Internationals Tournament for providing five free entries, to Minos Miranakis and the Racquet Club at Baha Mar for hosting the tournament and to the Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association (BLTA) for their unwavering support,” said Neil Mactaggart through a press release. “Thank you also to Tournament Referee Mickey Williams for his tireless efforts and professionalism, without which this event would not be possible.”
The IC Series takes a break for the summer and will resume in November with a tournament in Freeport, Grand Bahama. In the meantime, the BLTA begins a series of under-14 and under-16 tournaments at the Gym Tennis Club, starting June 8. Any player at least 11 years of age as of June 8 is eligible to enter. The tournaments will be in a round-robin format to maximize match play opportunities, similar to the IC Series. Interested persons are encouraged to enter their children who qualify.
Also, for inquiries about future IC Junior Series events, interested persons are asked to please send an e-mail to [email protected], or directly to the BLTA’s office at e-mail address [email protected]