Tennis Manitoba Hall of Fame
Located upstairs at the Taylor Tennis Centre
Class of 2006
Art Foster – Player
Although he never picked up a racquet until the age of 17 and never took a lesson, Art instantly fell in love with tennis and spent countless hours practicing. His natural talent shown through and he became successful very quickly.
Art holds the record for the most Men’s Singles titles at the Manitoba Open with six wins to his credit. He also won the Senior Nationals 60+ Singles, 55+ Doubles, and 60+ Doubles events at the age of 61.
Art’s reputation for sportsmanship led to the creation of the Art Foster Most Sportsmanlike Junior award.
Ray Daumler – Player
Ray began playing tennis at the age of 8 and quickly became one of the top junior players in the province, winning many singles and doubles titles in the 1970s and 1980s. At the Junior Nationals in 1983, Ray’s final year of junior eligibility, he defeated Mark Greenan who later went on to represent Canada as a Davis Cup player.
Ray won the Manitoba Open Men’s Singles championship in 1986, 1987, and 1989. He was the dominant player in the province at the time and very difficult to defeat.
Ray was extremely tough mentally and willed his way to many victories. He may not have looked like the smoothest player on the court, but he was very competitive, battled hard for every point, and knew how to win.
Gerry Labies – Builder
Gerry had a passion for tennis that was unsurpassed, as demonstrated by the countless hours he dedicated to the sport as a groundskeeper, coach, official, and player.
It was in his role as an official that he left his greatest legacy in the sport in Manitoba. He earned his Level 3 Tennis Canada Officials Certification in 1986 and in 1987 he served as the Chair Umpire for the Boris Becker vs. Kevin Curren exhibition at the Winnipeg Arena.
Gerry trained and organized the line umpires for the 1998 Women’s Challenger and the 1999 Pan American Games, two international events hosted at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club.
Class of 2007
James A. Ioanidis – Player
Jim took up the sport of tennis at the age of 11 and the native of Portage la Prairie quickly became one of the top junior players in the province. He won the Winnipeg and district playoffs several times and earned many Provincial Championships as a junior player.
In 1952, Jim finished second at the U15 Canadian Junior Championships in Ottawa. Four years later, he captured his first Manitoba Open Men’s Singles Championship at the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club. Jim went on to win the Manitoba Open a total of five times, including three consecutive years from 1961-1963.
Jim’s tennis prowess was recognized by Tennis Canada as he was selected for the Davis Cup trials.
Eleanor O’Gorman – Player
Eleanor was introduced to tennis in 1953 at the Wildwood Club through the strong grassroots program headed by Lloyd Borland. Developing tennis skills and friendships provided the required foundation for competing at the National Level and pursuing a career as a club racquet professional.
Eleanor’s versatile all court style of play challenger her opponents. In 1962, she was named Manitoba Junior Athlete of the Year. Partnering with Judy Peake, she won the Silver Medal at the 1969 Canada Summer Games. Later, she won the Canadian Ladies Doubles Championship (40+) with her sister, Isabel Feasby. Eleanor was also a six-time winner of the Manitoba Open Women’s Singles Championship.
While serving as President of the Manitoba Lawn Tennis Association, with the assistance of devoted volunteers, two Davis Cup ties, and the Canadian National Championships were hosted.
Hilda Lewis – Player
Hilda was the first dominant player in the province, asserting herself as the woman to beat in the 1920s. She was a longtime member of the Wildwood Club and captured many club championships over the years.
Hilda holds the record for the most Women’s Singles titles at the Manitoba Opener Tennis Championships. She won the tournament nine times, including a streak of seven years from 1920-1926.
Class of 2008
Matthew Akman – Player
Matthew won the Prairie Regional Junior Championship at the age of 15 and went on to represent Manitoba at the U16 Junior Nationals. He lost a close three-set match in the semis before winning the 3rd place playoff and coming home with the bronze medal.
The following year he moved to Vancouver to join a tennis academy headed by national coach Joseph Brabenee Sr. He went to Europe with the National Junior team and finished that year ranked fourth in Canada in his first year of under-18 competition.
Matthew earned a tennis scholarship to Northwestern University where he played #1 singles and was ranked top 50 in NCAA Div. I. He won the Men’s Singles and Men’s Doubles titles at the 1985 Manitoba Open. In 1989, Matthew achieved a Canadian ranking of #11 and world ranking on the ATP Tour.
Judy Peake – Player
Judy won the U13 and U15 Junior Nationals during a stellar junior career. She was also selected by Tennis Canada at the age of 17 to play in the United States Junior Open Tennis Championships.
Judy won five Women’s Singles Championships at the Manitoba Open and earned the Triple Crown on two separate occasions at the Manitoba Open, winning the singles, doubles, and mixed titles in the same year.
She won the silver medal in Women’s Doubles at the first Canada Summer Games in Halifax in 1969, teaming up with Eleanor O’Gorman. In 1970, Judy was named Manitoba Female Athlete of the Year.
Rick Borland – Player
Rick was the U13 Provincial Champion at the age of 10 and three years later he made the finals at the Junior Nationals. Then two years later, in 1960, he won the U15 Junior Nationals in Ottawa and was selected by Tennis Canada for the Canadian Junior Team.
In 1964, Rick won the first of his four Manitoba Open Singles Championships. He also won eight Men’s Doubles titles and five Mixed Doubles titles at the Manitoba Open during the 1960s and 1970s. Representing Manitoba at the first Canada Summer Games in Halifax in 1969, Rick finished fourth in singles.
Rick also served as President of the Winnipeg Lawn Tennis Club for three years and in 1972 he led the move of the club from the Roslyn Road site to the Wildewood Club.
Lloyd Borland – Builder
Lloyd was “Mr. Tennis” at the Wildewood Club during the 1940s and 1950s, undertaking the maintenance and operation of the tennis courts and developing junior tennis players.
He spent countless hours every spring and summer as a volunteer preparing the red shale courts for play. Lloyd had a passion for the game and was available from dawn to dusk to provide lessons to juniors at no cost.
Lloyd developed a number of very competitive junior players who won Junior National Championships: Judy Borland, Maria Stubbs, Nancy O’Brien, Eleanor O’Gorman, and Rick Borland. A very impressive accomplishment for a “club player” who learned everything from a book.
Class of 2010
Herb Richard – Player
Herb Richard won the Manitoba Open Singles title three times in 1940, 1941, and 1946 and was runner up in 1947. A 1941 article in Canadian Lawn and Badminton stated “He (Richard) possesses full stock of forehand and backhand drives and these were good enough to win him every major tennis crown and badminton honour in his province during the last five years.”
Herb turned pro in 1948 and was badminton, golf and tennis pro at one time or all together with the Winnipeg Canoe Club and Wildwood (Winnipeg Lawn Tennis) Club. His legend transcends the sports and his compassion and enthusiasm for all sports was noticed by students, competitors, and administrators.
His daughter Terri mentioned that had she not been interested in tennis, she may never had spent any time with her dad as he loved to play all sports so much. Herb’s wife was also an avid tennis player and rumours are that she could take Herb but chose never to compete in “real” tennis tournaments. Herb showed that tennis truly is “The sport of a lifetime,” playing right up until he was 85 with his wife and children.
Doug Cobb – Player/Builder
Doug was a self taught tennis player playing with his brother and friends at Earl Grey School. In 1946, he captured his first Manitoba title the Junior Boys Doubles. In 1950 and 51, Doug won the University of Manitoba Singles Championship and continued his winning ways with many singles and doubles titles including three Metropolitan Winnipeg Singles crowns. As a senior, Doug captured the 1983 Senior National Championships title, held for the first time in Winnipeg at Unicity Racquet Club. In 1988, Doug and Art Foster took the over 55 crown at the Senior Nationals held in Winnipeg.
His passion for tennis took Doug into the chair position at the Winnipeg Canoe Club during the 1950s and President of Tennis Manitoba in 1964 and 65. For the 1967 Pan American Games, held in Winnipeg, Doug was Drawmaster and Assistant Technical Chairman responsible for all officials and umpires serving under Reg Hugo. The three and a half hour draw meeting was said to be one of the fastest on record at the time and featured champions Thomas Koch (Brazil), Herbert Fitzgibbon (USA), and Arthur Ashe (USA).
From 1971-76, Doug served as Finance Chairman of Tennis Canada and co-chaired the tournament committee. He was a member of the executive committee and seconded the motion to build the National Tennis Centre in Toronto, Ont.
Class of 2022
George Kylar – Builder
George has been a dominant force in Tennis Manitoba for over five decades. Driven by passion, George’s dedication to tennis and his promotion of the sport is unrivalled.
His presence and influence has been felt in the international tennis community, participating in premier tennis tournaments around the world as a player, stringer and coach. However, his enthusiasm never diminished for building tennis at the pass roots level here in Manitoba. Often building a tennis club’s program from minimal resources into a thriving tennis community (Glendale, Sargent Park. Zig Zag Yacht Club and Unicity Racquet Club, late Taylor Tennis).
A Canadian nationals and Manitoba champion himself, he’s reinforced values that translate into life skills for all that have shared his passion for the sport and associated competitions.