HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

World tennis - Stolle Vs Kratzmann

Tong Kwao Games set for January 10

Ad hoc Tennis clinic, initiated by two ATP Pros

Chiang Mai HHH Corner - “On On!”

Chiangmai SportRoundup

World tennis - Stolle Vs Kratzmann

Tie me Kangaroos down, Sports!

Story and photos
Michael Vogt

The recent Paradorn Super tour brought world-class players to Chiang Mai, amongst them Sandon Stolle and Andrew Kratzmann from Australia, both high-ranking ATP serious professionals, but both with that ‘Down-under’ sense of humor, as we found out during the match.

Very serious tennis, much to the enjoyment of the spectators.

Before they came on for their ‘sudden death’ match (no wombats were to be left standing), two thirds of the spectators had left to follow Paradorn after his match with Marcelo Rios, to get pictures and autographs of their home hero. Those that remained were in for a great display of fun tennis.

Stolle was demoted to line judge, while his replacement continued to score points for him.

This was obvious when Stolle and Kratzmann warmed up and began their game in perfect weather conditions. Strong serves and baseline volleys from both players made it perfectly clear that we were watching serious tennis professionals at work, but it did not take long before the Antipodeans began playing up, as well as playing tennis!

Has anyone seen the balls?

With Kratzmann in the lead, Stolle spotted a youngster, and said the young boy would play for him while Stolle took over the role of line judge. This ploy worked well as the new ‘line judge’ began distracting Kratzmann, who in return, jumped in the crowd, shouldered another young boy, and just placed him in the middle of the center court. They exchanged the boy’s mobile phone for Kratzmann’s racket; Kratzmann made a mock phone call, and the two boys continued the game, which the umpire continued to score. The spectators were delighted, cheering the players so loudly that many who earlier left the center court returned.

Kratzmann lets loose a powerful serve ...

The two Australians continued their game display, giving the crowd what they wanted to see - powerful tennis; however, that did not last long, as Stolle (always having an eye for the “sheila’s” as the Aussies call them) invited a young woman on the court. She must have held a tennis racket before, but her first serve was powerfully returned by Kratzmann, perfectly aimed at Stolle who caught the ball with his stomach, pretending that it had hit him so hard that he was knocked over.

...hitting Stolle who ends up rolling on the court.

Great fun tennis was put on by the Aussie duo and the crowd just loved to see Stolle and Kratzmann finish the set with a 5:7 tiebreak. After these high jinks, both players decided not to continue the ‘game’, but to start an ad hoc tennis clinic for all the kids present.

Sandon Stolle shows off
his powerful serve.

This game was both serious and entertaining and one of the Australians told Chiangmai Mail after the match, “Geez mate, that was fun! But, fair dinkum, wait till next year when I bring me didgeridoo!” They both said that they thoroughly enjoyed being here at the stadium, and that they see their mission is in bringing kids closer to sporting activities. By making an event such as this one fun and entertaining, they wished to awaken the kids’ interest in sports, and are hoping that they will return to Chiang Mai in 2004. Geez mates, we hope so too, but how much can a koala bear?!

Andrew Kratzmann is too busy playing tennis.

Tong Kwao Games set for January 10

8,000 athletes to compete in 21 categories

Chin Rattitamakul

The 31st National Universities Games (Tong Kwao Games) are this year hosted by Chiang Mai and will start on January 10. The grand opening ceremony will be held at the 700 Year Anniversary sports complex at 3 p.m.

Logo of Tong Kwao Games, the butea monosperma or Tong Kwao tree, another of the CMU symbols.

The sporting competitions, track and field events are being organized from January 10-17, with 8,000 athletes from 62 higher level educational institutes competing in 21 individual categories.

Assist. Prof. Dr. Nipon Tuwanon, president of Chiang Mai University (CMU), said this competition would have the greatest number of athletes and institutes ever seen for these games.

Ad hoc Tennis clinic, initiated by two ATP Pros

THE New Years present for a number of mini-Paradorns and Paradornettes

Story and photos by Michael Vogt

Quick thinking by the two ATP pros Sandon Stolle and Andrew Kratzmann ‘made the day’ for mini tennis players during the recent Paradorn Supertour leg in Chiang Mai.

The kids had great fun and really enjoyed the time they could spend with the two players. Here, Andrew Kratzmann is the center of attention.

One hour of a semi-serious tennis match was enough, and looking at the excited eyes of hundreds of kids, they decided that it was worthwhile to open a tennis clinic for the youngsters, on the spot. The initial plan was to take five kids onto the court; however, 50 made it over the railing, and the exercise had to be extended to almost an hour of fun teaching.

The first 50 kids participating in the fun exercise.

Andrew Kratzmann said afterwards, “Paradorn is a great guy, and Sandon (Stolle) and I are both happy to help him to promote his and our sport in his country. Paradorn draws the people, and we play for people who love tennis.”

Height matters - Sandon Stolle, at 192 cm is about 100 cm taller that this little fellow, Simon, and even though the racket was almost as big as Simon, both he and Sandon had fun.

Kratzmann will be playing the Australian Open in January, and is looking forward to returning to Chiang Mai in 2004. “We may even be able to create more tennis heroes for the future,” he added.

Lining up for the serve - it is not every day that you get personal training from an ATP pro.

Sandon Stolle said, “Kids need role models, and tennis (in Thailand) will improve a lot. Thailand, which people mostly know for kickboxing, was placed on the map of international tennis through Paradorn. All of us are here to help to open this once elite sport to youngsters.”

Chiang Mai HHH Corner - “On On!”

H3, the oldest hash club (males) in Chiang Mai is picked up from the “ONON” pub (Moon Mueng Soi 1) at 16.00 once every 2 weeks. Pick up can be arranged from Fish and Chips shop as well.

CSH3 is a mixed Saturday hash which is picked up from the H3 Pub on Moon Mueng Road every Saturday at 15.30. Pick up can be arranged from Fish and Chips shop as well.

CUMH3 is a male hash which runs from the “ONON” Pub every consecutive (from CH3) Tuesday. Pick up is at 16.00.

BH3 is a female hash (Harriettes) that runs once a month on the last Sunday of the month.

All information either from Fish and Chips, H3 or “ONON” Pub. Or look at the websites at:

It’s great fun and you surely get value for your money plus you get to meet all the long-time expats here!