Oliver's winning twist at Ballina
TOP seed Oliver Casey fought back for a 4-6 6-2 6-1 win over Suffolk Park teenager Louis Clark in the open men's singles final at the Ballina New Year Open tennis tournament.
Casey has been taking a break since returning to Melbourne from a four-year college scholarship in North Carolina in the United States.
"He made me feel really uncomfortable out there and I was on the back foot until midway through that second set,” Casey said.
"I had to fire myself up to get back in the contest and I had a bit of luck as the match went on.
"It's never meant to be easy in a final and you have to keep your composure when you find yourself a set down.
"Full credit to him, he came out pretty fired up and really used his serve.
"We're both super competitive and I think that made a good atmosphere for the crowd.”
Earlier, Gold Coast teenager Ella Huresfovic proved too strong in the open women's final with a 6-4 6-3 win over New Zealander Tiana Windbuchler.
Windbuchler knocked off top seed Megan Smith 3-6 6-3 7-5 in the semi-final while Huresfovic was forced to overcome illness to play in the final.
"I was a bit worried when I caught the flu halfway through the tournament and thought I might have had to pull out,” Huresfovic said.
"I was able to get through it in the end and it was good to play a friend in the final.
"We've come up against each other a few times and have pretty similar styles.
"There isn't much between the top seeds and I think it's just a matter of who performs on the day.
"We're like a little pack and we travel all around Australia to play in these tournaments.”
Huresfovic hopes to put her $1000 prizemoney towards a trip to Europe while Casey said he would hold on to his cash.