Country boy wins big in Brisbane
TENNIS: Gladstone Dylan Price took centre stage at Pat Rafter Arena in Brisbane and won Tennis Queensland's 2019 Queensland Champion of Champions tournament for the under-14 category.
The Gladstone Tennis and Squash Association player, who also took out the Open Men's Singles in Gladstone late last year, beat Brisbane's Joseph Mateo 6-2, 6-2.
"I just ran him around the court and open it up," Price said of the emphatic victory.
"My strength is my leg speed and power."
Price knew he had Mateo's measure because he beat him in the first game of the round robin series on Monday.
"I beat him 6-1, 6-2 in the first round and I kind of had a good feeling for this game," Price said.
Price stayed with friends while in Brisbane and they offered plenty of support throughout the week.
He played the final on one of the outside courts before presentations were held on centre court.
"It felt cool playing on court nine and was not really nervous at all," he said.
"I treated it as just another match."
The stylish right-hander also beat number one seed Sparsh Goyal, also from Brisbane, on Monday.
Price aims to get his Australian rankings up after a knee injury plagued season 2019, but that's all behind him now.
"I had knee surgery last year and my ranking went down," he said.
It's now back on an upward trend and is now ranked 1548 in Australia after being previously ranked 1765.
Price praised former Gladstone tennis coach Rob McBean and is now mentored by Sunshine Coast's Adon Cronk.
"I wouldn't know where I'd be without Rob McBean," he said.
Price qualified for the Champion of Champions as the winner of the Rockhampton Open Age tournament in March 2019.
Champions qualify for winning any level AMT tournament held in Queensland - bronze, silver or gold.
Tournament matches were played in a round robin draw with elimination finals.
All matches were best of two tie-break sets with a match tie-break in lieu of a third set.
Tennis Queensland boss Mark Handley congratulated all the winners.
"It's not an easy task to win any tournament but to take on the best of the best and triumph is something to be really proud of," he said.
"At this time of year we are watching our tennis stars - how great to see so many young players coming through. Exciting times for Queensland tennis."
Price is the only Central Queensland tennis player to be sponsored by HEAD Tennis.