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Featured Pickler: Brandon Anandan

Dink House Pickleball trains top-level players 


Brandon Anandan, a top-ranked pickleball player and trainer, once played tennis in the U.S. Open. Here, he poses for a photo by a sign with the US Open logo.
Brandon Anandan, a top-ranked pickleball player and trainer, once played tennis in the U.S. Open.

There has yet to be a grand opening for The Dink House Pickleball in Largo. What there has been, however, is top-notch training on the four indoor courts at a facility off Ulmerton Road. 


Brandon Anandan, a top-ranked U.S. tennis player who grew up in Clearwater and once was ranked No. 1 in Florida, trains and works with players who are at the 4.0 level and above. 


Transitioning from tennis to pickleball proved to be quite natural and rewarding. Anandan, 34, has competed in six tournaments and won two locally. 


“It’s a pretty easy transition from tennis,” he said. “We just have to show up and we’re already at a good level.” 


Also coaching at The Dink House is Dominic Catalano, a top professional pickleball player and broadcasting commentator. 


Memberships for various levels are available and having hosted one pickleball tournament at the facility, there might be more in the spring. Anandan is considering one with a payout in thousands of dollars. 


“It would give amateurs a chance to play the pros,” he said. 


A tourney in December primarily helped his mixed doubles partner Paula Rives, who along with her husband Armando Cajuso, runs the Suncoast Pickleball Club. Prior tourneys by the couple have been scheduled at the Sarah Vande Berg Tennis Center in Zephyrhills. 


By Steve Lee

Times Total Media Correspondent

Photo courtesy of Brandon Anandan

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