Updated: Jul 28, 2022
If Noël Coward lived at The Landings today, he would surely write Only mad dogs, Englishmen and pickleball players go out in the midday sun. Although pickleball was first played in 1965, Sir Noël, who died in 1973, probably never heard of much less saw the sport played. To the best of my knowledge there were no mad dogs nor Englishmen on the pickleball courts last Saturday when a stalwart Landings Club team faced a youthful and determined team from crosstown rival Lake Mayer.
The official heat index registered a brutal 103 degrees when the teams squared off, but because of dark surfaces, little wind and lack of shade it was closer to 115 degrees on the courts. Despite the inferno, three women’s and five men’s teams took to the courts at 2:00 and played until well past official cocktail-hour. When the scores were tallied, Lake Mayer prevailed by the thin margin of 386 points to 378. While the home team lost, the event was an overwhelming victory for area pickleball.
These matches are laying the groundwork for a future Savannah pickleball league. Players and spectators alike agreed the contest was a huge success. According to Lance Burgstiner, the Lake Mayer captain, “We all had a blast and were very thankful to The Landings for hosting.” Event organizer Tim Sampson added, “This was definitely a win for our broader Southside pickleball community and a significant step toward building a Savannah area league. Friendships were made or strengthened today and a lot of phone numbers were exchanged.”
Special kudos to The Landings’ teams of Nancy Early and Karen Inglese and Vanessa Marin and Lisa Tocci who won all of their matches. Congratulations to Johnny Moran who amassed the highest point total for The Landings men. Special thanks to Court Sports stalwart Olivia Walker for all she did to help make sure the tournament was a success.