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Unveiling the Excitement: Inside the Edmonton National Bank Challenger

Nov 04, 2023

Photograph by Lindsey Tran

Held at the Royal Glenora Club from October 29 to November 5, this tournament featured top tennis talent competing for a combined $50,000 purse in both men’s and women’s events. As the sixth stop on the National Bank Challenger Tour, it was part of a prestigious journey through cities like Winnipeg, Granby, Saguenay, Calgary, and Drummondville.

This event is historic, being Edmonton’s first combined Challenger tournament. It marks a new era in professional tennis for our city, complementing past competitions like the 2017 Davis Cup and the 2006 Billie Jean King Cup. We’re grateful to Tennis Canada, event sponsors, volunteers, and all spectators for making this event possible. At the Royal Glenora Club, we celebrate this momentous occasion as we write the next chapter in Edmonton’s tennis history.

An Overview of the Edmonton National Bank Challenger
The Edmonton National Bank Challenger is part of the ITF World Tennis Tour, which serves as a steppingstone for aspiring professional tennis players to make their mark on the Canadian tennis circuit. Held at the Royal Glenora Club, this event provides a platform for both up-and-coming talents and established players to showcase their skills, earn valuable ranking points, and compete for a share of the prize money.

Photograph by Nicholas Li

Opening Night
The excitement kicked off on October 30th following the conclusion of the qualifying matches. The evening commenced with a vibrant Player’s Party at 5:00 pm in our Braemar Ballroom, extending a warm welcome to players, dedicated volunteers, and esteemed VIP guests. As the anticipation soared, a bag piper lead everyone through the Club to the tennis courts at 6:45 pm. This grand procession marked the beginning of our opening night ceremony, finishing with a ceremonial first serve. The first served was performed by Local wildcards Kaetan Mehta and Sophie Stanton.

Exciting Matches and Competitive Players
Throughout the week, tennis enthusiasts were treated to a series of exciting matches that showcased the depth of talent in the tournament. The competition was fierce, with players displaying incredible skill, determination, and sportsmanship.

Ninety-six athletes competed in this tournament, showcasing remarkable talent. Among the standout participants were Arina Rodionova, Aziz Dougaz, Brayden Schnur, Charles Broom, Justin Boulais, Kayla Cross, Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove, and Liam Draxl, whose exceptional performances captivated the crowd!

Photograph by Lindsey Tran

The Draw: Champions and Runner-ups
Men’s Doubles Champion: Giles Hussey and Vasilios Caripi
Men’s Doubles Runner-up: Justin Boulais and Osgar O’Hoisin
Women’s Doubles Champion: Kayla Cross and Liv Hovde
Women’s Doubles Runner-up: Allura and Maribella Zamarripa
Men’s Singles Champion: Justin Boulais
Men’s Singles Runner-up: Giles Hussey
Women’s Singles Champion: Arina Rodionova
Women’s Singles Runner-up: Lesley Pattinama Kerkhove

The RGC in the News
The tournament garnered significant media attention, showcasing the Club’s prominence! Our feature on Global Edmonton included an interview with our Head Tennis Pro and Tournament Director, Ryan Schroffel, shedding light on the essence of the Event. Watch the clip here.
Additionally, CBC’s ‘Our Edmonton’ spotlighted the club, delving into the Edmonton National Bank Challenger’s significance. Watch the clip here.
Radio Canada joined us during the event, providing coverage in French. They conducted an insightful interview with player Justin Boulais and Tournament Director Ryan Schroffel. Watch the clip here.

Our Sponsors and the VIP Experience
Our valued sponsors were treated to an exclusive Royal Glenora Club VIP experience, offering unparalleled access throughout the tournament. With VIP access, sponsors enjoyed premium box seating providing an optimal view of the courts, ensuring they didn’t miss a moment of the matches. Adding to their deluxe experience was access to the prestigious VIP Lexus Lounge, situated above the courts, where they indulged in a delicious spread of food and beverages while enjoying the games in elevated comfort.

But that wasn’t all; sponsors received an exclusive invitation to our Players Party on opening night, allowing them to mingle with athletes and key figures in a vibrant and celebratory atmosphere. This VIP treatment ensured our sponsors not only witnessed world-class tennis but also immersed themselves in an unforgettable experience, highlighting their crucial role in supporting this inaugural event.

Photography by Lindsey Tran