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Wheelchair Masters

 

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The Return of the World's Best!
November 5-9, 2014
Marguerite Tennis Pavilion

 

Superhumans deliver high-caliber play on final day of Wheelchair Tennis Masters

ChampsLess than 24 hours since he won the ITF Wheelchair Tennis Doubles Masters championships with partner Nick Taylor, David Wagner is practicing for his singles match against rival Lucas Sithole of South Africa.

“I have competed against Lucas six or seven times and am ready for this match,” he said in between practicing his serve. “It’s been great to have the Masters in the city of Mission Viejo. It’s close to home for me and to have the support of family and friends here has been phenomenal.”

Countless people supported top seeds Wagner and Taylor as they captured their seventh quad doubles crown on Sunday, as the first of six titles were decided at the 2013 NEC Wheelchair Tennis Masters and ITF Wheelchair Doubles Masters at Mission Viejo’s Marguerite Tennis Pavilion.  The pair kept their title with a 6-1, 6-2 win over fellow American Greg Hasterok and Sarah Hunter of Canada – the second seeds. On Monday, Wagner, who is world No. 1, beat Sithole 0-6, 6-2, 6-2 in the quad singles final. This is Wagner’s sixth NEC Masters title.

The competition that began in Mission Viejo on Nov. 5 marks the first time that either of these year-end events has been hosted in the United States, and the first time since 2002 that the two events have been held at the same venue. The tournament ends tonight. “It is incredible for Mission Viejo to have this level of professional tennis,” said tennis legend Michael Chang, who won the 1989 French Open at age 17. Chang was at the Tennis Pavilion Saturday for Tennis Greats Night.   “The Masters is a great way to make use of the Marguerite Tennis Pavilion and for me it makes it more exciting being my home town.” 

Southern Utah resident Rick Draney, a former world #1 quad wheelchair tennis player, said he’s watched wheelchair tennis evolve since he began playing the sport in 1984. “To see what it has become today, the level of play and athleticism of the players is incredible,” he said. “It’s great to see such an elite event  back here in Southern California (after being in Europe) especially here in Mission Viejo where there has been such a commitment from the city for the youth wheelchair tennis camp to begin with. It really has come full circle.” 

LucasJane Goodman, chief official of the event, said the 25 tournament officials all feel “privileged” to be at such a “first-class” event. “What the city has done is mind-boggling,” she said. “They have killed themselves to make this a great event. Who would not want to be here?"

Young Jake Hamman of Dana Point was enjoying being at the final day of the Masters while remembering the meaning of Veterans Day.  Off from middle school for the holiday, he volunteered his time at the event. “It's a good day to volunteer and give back for what the troops did for us,” he said.

 For further information on the tournaments, please call (949) 859-4348, option 4 or contact  tennis@cityofmissionviejo.org  

Past Articles:

Tournament Updates
November 7, 2013: Superhumans embrace Wheelchair Tennis Masters competition in Mission Viejo 
November 6, 2013: Southlands's David Wagner picks up Victory No. 2 in convincing fashion on second day of ITF Wheelchair Tennis Masters 
November 5, 2013: World's greatest Superhumans compete at Wheelchair Tennis Masters 


Tennis in the Community
February  6, 2014:
Mission Viejo Awarded $11k by Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation
January 27, 2014: Mission Viejo is first city to receive prestigious wheelchair tennis award
October 2, 2013: Two superhumans will play wheelchair tennis Friday at Marguerite Tennis Pavilion

For more articles and tournament news, visit the official blog of the City of Mission Viejo,
 www.missionviejolife.org and search "tennis."