Pieter Calitz continued his domination of the local tennis scene when he won both his semi final and final match in the Barretts Champion of Champions tournament at Ellis Park without dropping a game.
Having won the recent Marks Park Open, Calitz continued with his dominant form to crush Hilton Nyakabau in the semi final and then repeat his West Rand Open win of last year over Werner Knuppe, also without dropping a game. Both Nyakabau and Knuppe are accomplished players, but such is the gulf between Calitz and the other local players at the moment that he was able to brush them aside with almost contemptuous ease.
His ability to manufacture passing shots, particularly down the line, had his opponents firstly confused and then bewildered. He controlled the rallies to his pace to frustrate both of his opponents.
Knuppe had walked the proverbial tight rope before winning his semi final against Danie Buys. Buys, who last week defeated the second seed Damien Hume, led 5-1 and 9-7 in the Pro Set tie break in the final set. Knuppe’s resilience ensured that despite having to fend off those two match points, he fought is way back to win an enthralling encounter but he was no match for Pieter Calitz in the final.
In the ladies event, Chennel Symonds was not quite as dominant but won the final beating Veronique Luksich for the loss of only one game. Although Luksich displayed her own brand of positive tennis, she was unable to make any headway against the harder hitting and more aggressive Symonds. Add to that her foot work, which is a model for any young player to day, ensured that she was seldom caught out of position.
Symonds had her toughest time in the first set of her semi final against Hayley Rudman which she finally won 6-4 when Rudman was guilty of too many unforced errors at vital moments. Once the first set was secure, Symonds enjoyed the freedom to express her greater range of shots and aggressive attitude to dominate the second set and win that 6-1.
After a somewhat slow start, Lukschi easily beat Carmen Spence 6-4 6-0 in the other semi final.
Men: P Calitz (1) bt H Nyakabu 60 60.
W Knuppe bt D Buys 63 26 11 9
Ladies: V Luksich bt C Spence 64 60
C Symonds bt H Rudman 64 61
Men : Calitz bt Knuppe 60 60
Ladies: Symonds bt Luksich 61 60
Play off for 3rd and 4th place
Men : Buys bt Nyakabu 64 01 retired
Ladies: Rudman bt Spence 75 61.