The Edgewater Resort & Spa general manager Franz Staufer, Nane Vainepoto and men’s doubles winners Felix Matapuku and Jason Pierre. 20111712
The beauty of seeing former tennis legends on the courts during the Cook Islands Games stuck in the mind of Tiki Daniel, so much so that he decided to create another tournament.
Seeing players enjoy themselves at the first Edgewater
Resort and Spa Masters Doubles Tennis Tournament, took Tiki Daniel back to the days
when tennis was so popular.
A former international tennis representative, he proposed
“It is a great place to start the tournament,” he
The successful two-day event on November 13-14 will
now become an annual tournament for women from 40 years and men from 45 years +
doubles tennis event.
“Covid did a good job at bringing people out of their
homes and the games were amazing,” said Daniel.
“There were tennis players like myself who have not
been on a court for 20 years… we all registered to play.”
Watching legend players like Ned Howard, Tupou Faireka
play tennis again was a beautiful thing to see, Daniel said.
“We had represented the Cook Islands in the past.”
Like his father Apii Daniel, Tiki was also former
national coach for many years.
He grew up surrounded by tennis.
“We had no choice but to play tennis; in those days it
was a dream to be at the level of our father.”
In the past there were nine tennis clubs on the
island: Arorangi, Titikaveka, Ngatangiia, Matavera, Tupapa, Takuvaine, Nikao
“We would turn up to the game all dressed in white and
with a nu (if you were hosting).
Unfortunately, as time moved on, changes occurred.
“Then we lost the clubs, that was the fall of tennis -
when we lost the clubs, we lost the foundation of tennis.”
Tennis died out and players moved on to other sports.
Current national tennis coach Malcom Kajer is a former
student of Daniel.
“Malcom now has a career in tennis, he is doing a
Daniel signed up for Team Manihiki tennis in the games,
but got injured in his first match.
Chasing a ball, both his knees gave up.
Due to his injury he discovered the healing massage
hands of Papa Ioane Katoa from Pukapuka.
“He was amazing, after his massage I managed to play
volleyball for our team,” he said.
Papa Katoa also attended the Edgewater Masters tennis
event to help those others with injuries.
“People queued up for a massage from him, he was such
great help to the players.”
Daniel said, seeing the players have fun on court, the
dancing in between breaks, and having good laughs was special.
“The winner for me was seeing these players enjoy
themselves, it took me back to the older days when tennis was so popular.”
“We are also thankful to Vodafone, Cook Islands
Tourism and the Tennis Association who joined us in creating this event.”
Results for the Edgewater Resort and Spa Masters
doubles tennis tournament are as follows:
The men’s winners: First Jason Pierre and Felix
Matapuku, second Malcom Kajer and Tangi Mataiti.
The women’s winners: First Tanya Savage and Lawrencia
Williams, second Shona Lynch and Mary Young.
The most humorous award went to Aunty Nane Vainepoto from
Cook Islands Tourism; most outrageous outfit to Jeannine Daniel and Pipa Arona
for wearing a different outfit in every game; the wooden spoon award went to
Roland Neururer (we all know we were playing tennis, but someone forgot to let
Papa Roland know as he was hitting sixes in his game); the Tokotoko awards went
to Brian Baudinet, Eric Newnham, Robert Skews and Mahai Daniel - who are the
masters of the universe, their knees kept playing up but, they persevered on.