The doctors are in: (L to R) Bennett Sweren, Braxton Mitchell, David Deitrick, Howard Hauptman, (Not Pictured) Eric Bass, George Duncan.
© Garrett Ellwood
By J. Fred Sidhu, special to USTA.com
SURPRISE, Ariz. – The USTA Mid-Atlantic Section 9.0 men’s team from Baltimore can make a claim at this weekend’s 2013 USTA League Adult 55 & Over National Championships that no other team can match: the team, which plays at the Homeland Racquet Club in Brooklandville, Md., lists six doctors who practice in various medical fields on its player roster.
“When somebody comes late to a practice or match, we know why,” said team captain Dr. Bennett Sweren, a radiologist. “We know their schedules are busy and it’s tough. We do try to get out there and make an effort; otherwise it would be hard to get a game.”
According to Sweren, when the team gets together, the doctors rarely engage in medical talk.
“It’s very unlikely because our fields are so dispersed. We’re all specialists in something and they don’t cross over much,” he said. “We will empathize with each other about something that might have happened. Other than that, we don’t discuss cases or have anything in common that way.”
For these doctors of different disciplines, tennis is the common thread.
“It’s pretty much the main outlet we have at this stage,” said Sweren. “You’re stuck in [the office] for a 10-hour day, so it’s a chance to get out there and play. Some of the guys were pretty good in college so they wanted to keep up with it.”
Sweren and his team are making their fifth appearance in a USTA League National Championship, still seeking a title.
“It’s tough competition, and we’ve had some real close matches,” said Sweren. “We know if we practice enough and keep it together, we have a chance. The window closes and this might be the last time. We really enjoy being here and it’s nice to see people from all over the country and from different backgrounds."
The Mid-Atlantic 9.0 Tennis Playing Doctors
- Dr. Eric Bass – Professor and Director, Evidence-based Practice Center (EPC) at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
- Dr. David Deitrick – Dentist
- Dr. George Duncan – Ophthalmologist
- Dr. Howard Hauptman – Rheumatologist
- Dr. Braxton Mitchell – Genetic Epidemiologist, Professor at University of Maryland School of Medicine
- Dr. Bennett Sweren – Radiologist
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