It’s game on tonight as former world No.1-ranked junior tennis player Filip Peliwo is in Victoria for the South Island Indoor Challenge at Cedar Hill Recreation Centre.
Peilwo faces former NCAA player Patrick Flint of Victoria tonight (Oct. 17) at 6:30 p.m. Schedule and updates available through Island Tennis.
Peliwo’s presence is the latest evidence of the cash tournament’s growing field of elites as the most prestigious tournament on the Victoria tennis calendar. The total prize purse is $15,000 with $5,000 for the winner, $3,500 for second, and $2,000 for third.
The top prize of $5,000 is actually less than last year, as organizers were uncomfortable with the final going to a tiebreaker, in which a $4,500 point was played. Instead, the money has been spread more evenly, as per players wishes.
“This is by far our best lineup ever. To see this level of pro tennis in Victoria is unbelievable. In just four years we have made the Indoor Challenge the premier indoor tennis event in Canada,” Indoor Challenge co-director Dean Gills said.
Last year Peliwo was top junior ITP player with wins at Wimbledon and the US Open, while making the finals of the Australian and French opens. He was the first junior to reach all four Grand Slam event finals since Sweden’s Stefan Edberg in 1983.
Spectators hoping to see Peliwo this weekend better get there early said co-director John Miller.
“Last year we had standing room only for the finals. This year, with Peliwo and several other quality players here, we expect to sell out every day. Peliwo’s achievement last year was one of the greatest achievements in Canadian tennis history.”
Flint vs. Peliwo was one of four matches Thursday, as African Davis Cup member Rik De Voest played Daniel Chu (Vancouver). Former ATP doubles specialist Brian Battistone is also here with his two-handled racquet, The Natural.
The round robin format tournament continues today at 5 p.m. and throughout Saturday, with the final scheduled for 1 p.m. on Sunday. Weekend passes for the tournament are $20 for adults and $10 for youth (under 18) and are available at Courtside Sports and Cedar Hill Recreation Centre.
Thursday, Oct. 17:
5 pm Rik De Voest vs Daniel Chu
5 pm Philip Bester vs Oren Motevassel
6:30 pm Patrick Flint vs Filip Peliwo
8:00 pm Brian Battistone vs Haythem Abid