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TENNIS INDUSTRY: Anne Worcester Named President of Universal Tennis

May 28, 2019 (SAN FRANCISCO, CA) – Universal Tennis, the world’s premier tennis platform, today announced that Anne Worcester, former WTA CEO & Connecticut Open Tournament Director, has joined the company as President.

As President, Worcester will be instrumental in overseeing the growth and development of UTR worldwide. Beyond her leadership at the organization, her focus at the outset will be on increasing grassroots efforts to connect communities to the sport and fostering diverse partnerships within the tennis ecosystem to build participation on the platform.

“What drew me to Universal Tennis is its digitally savvy approach to make tennis more affordable, accessible and fun for all players,” said Anne Worcester, Universal Tennis President. “Level-based play helps to break down some of the biggest barriers to our sport, so that it’s not about age, gender, where you play or how much you can afford. UTR makes it easy to find, connect and play with same level tennis partners, anytime and anywhere. This addresses many of the challenges I have experienced all my life as a recreational player, a parent and 35 years on all sides of professional tennis.” 

“Anne has an exceptional career in tennis, marked by her commitment to improving the game for players and serving as a champion for tennis worldwide. Her dedication to the betterment and growth of the sport is unparalleled,” said Mark Leschly, Universal Tennis Chairman & CEO. “Anne is fully aligned with UTR’s mission and vision to create more opportunities and open pathways for players of all levels to grow the game. We are thrilled to have Anne on board.”

Worcester has over 35 years of experience in tennis, working with players, tournaments, sponsors and governing bodies. She was the first female CEO of the WTA, becoming the first woman to head any professional sports organization. Worcester served as the Tournament Director of the Connecticut Open for 21 years, developing the WTA tournament into one of the world’s best attended women’s tennis events and a player favorite. 

Under Worcester’s leadership, the Connecticut Open was widely recognized as a leading example of leveraging professional tennis to build community tennis, especially among inner city youth. In addition, Worcester co-founded New Haven Youth Tennis & Education (New HYTEs), now in its 15th year, which has enriched the lives and positively affected the futures of hundreds of economically disadvantaged inner city youth. Programs include year-round tennis, education and mentoring programs. 

Worcester is a graduate of Duke University. She serves on the boards of the Center for Hearing & Communication and New Haven Youth Tennis & Education (New HYTEs) and will transition to the board of Tennis Foundation of Connecticut. She will be based in Connecticut and New York City. 

 

READ MORE AT https://www.tennisindustry.org/cms/index.cfm/news/anne-worcester-named-president-of-universal-tennis/

TENNIS INDUSTRY: Top Tennis Stars Offer Advice to Players In New ‘Up Your Game’ Campaign

A dozen tennis stars offer advice on how recreational players can get the most out of their equipment in a series of public service announcements airing on Tennis Channel.

NEW YORK, N.Y. (May 27, 2019) — A new industry campaign designed to help consumers get the most out of their equipment has enlisted the help of some of the game’s biggest stars—including Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal. The tennis stars offer their advice on videos produced by and airing on Tennis Channel and social media channels, and in print ads in Tennis Magazine.

The “Up Your Game” campaign brings advice from a dozen top pros on their gear, new technology, the importance of new strings and other areas to help recreational players enjoy the game and play better. The tour pros interviewed were:

* Kevin Anderson (plays with Dunlop racquet)
* Marin Cilic (Head racquet)
* Roger Federer (Wilson racquet)
* Taylor Fritz (Head racquet)
* Angelique Kerber (Yonex racquet)
* Madison Keys (Wilson racquet)
* Christina McHale (Head racquet)
* Garbine Muguruza (Babolat racquet)
* Rafael Nadal (Babolat racquet)
* Denis Shapovalov (Yonex)
* Serena Williams (Wilson racquet)
* Caroline Wozniacki (Babolat racquet)

The Tennis Channel sat down with the tour players in March, during the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif. Not only did the top pros take the time to share advice and insights designed to help all players, but Tennis Channel also interviewed key equipment directors at each of the five brands: Babolat, Dunlop, Head, Wilson and Yonex.

“Getting the most out of your gear is vital to getting the most out of your game,” says Jeff Williams, president of the Tennis Industry Association (TIA) and director of publishing with Tennis Channel/Tennis Magazine. The TIA worked with Tennis Channel and racquet manufacturers to help coordinate the messaging.

“The latest game-improvement tennis equipment and products are constantly evolving, and we look to better inform and encourage recreational players to get or seek advice,” says TIA Executive Director Jolyn de Boer. “With our partners at the Tennis Channel, the tips and recommendations we’ve compiled from both top professional players and key racquet manufacturing executives will help all players to enjoy the game more and play better.”

The best advice for players, when searching for a new racquet and even new strings, is to demo the products, de Boer emphasizes. “Find a tennis facility or retailer near you and ask the experts to properly match the correct gear to your game.”

The tips for recreational tennis players compiled by the Tennis Channel and TIA include these general guidelines and recommendations:

  • Recreational players should restring their racquets three to four times a year.
  • Seek the advice of professional stringers or Master Racquet Technicians, since string tension affects control, power, spin and playability, all of which are lost over time with any type of string. Visit playtennis.com/gear to find a stringer/technician.
  • Racquets and strings are very susceptible to the environment, particularly to heat and humidity. Do not leave racquets in your car or trunk.
  • Materials used in racquet frames break down over time, resulting in loss of power and less control. The TIA recommends that recreational players upgrade their racquet every two to three years.
  • Racquet technology continues to improve with every new model released, which can help players gain more control, spin, power and comfort.
  • Players’ games change over time, so it’s important to ask the expert and match the correct equipment to help maximize your playing style.

To view all the videos from top tour players, searches and tips on the proper care of tennis gear and advice from leading manufacturers, visit playtennis.com/gear.

 

READ MORE AT https://www.tennisindustry.org/cms/index.cfm/news/top-tennis-stars-offer-advice-to-players-in-new-up-your-game-campaign/

TENNIS INDUSTRY: Tennis Channel, USTA Form 3-Year Rights Deal for NCAA D1 Chps.

LOS ANGELES, May 7, 2019 – Tennis Channel and the USTA, in conjunction with the NCAA, have entered a three-year partnership that makes the network the exclusive television home of the NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Tennis National Championships. The agreement begins with this year’s events, to be held at the USTA National Campus in Orlando, Fla., May 16-25.
 
During the championships, Tennis Channel will show more than 50 hours of live matches, with live coverage every day of the 10-day competition.  In all, the network will provide the most hours of NCAA DI Men’s and Women’s Tennis National Championships coverage in television history.  Held simultaneously, both the men’s and women’s events feature team and individual tournaments.
 
“Tennis Channel is the perfect home for the best players and teams in college tennis,” said John MacDonald, Tennis Channel’s senior vice president, content programming. “We’re excited to bring these young stars to fans around the country.”
 
The agreement expands the network’s coverage of college tennis at the USTA National Campus. Since 2018, Tennis Channel has televised the USTA’s College MatchDay series of head-to-head competitions, featuring some of the country’s top schools.  The weekly battles marked the network’s first live coverage of college tennis.
 
“We are incredibly excited that the Tennis Channel is committing to this level of coverage of the NCAA Tennis Championships, showcasing college tennis at its highest level and elevating the sport like never before,” said Lew Sherr, chief revenue officer, USTA. “College tennis is an important part of the development of the next generation of tennis players and the exposure generated by this partnership will only further our mission of growing the game of tennis across the country.”
 
“We are grateful to the Tennis Channel for providing this unprecedented level of exposure to the NCAA Division I student-athletes competing in the national championship,” added Elizabeth Schmidt, NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Tennis Committee chair and head women’s tennis coach at Rice University.
 
Emerging from respective fields of 64 schools, eight men’s and eight women’s teams will compete in the NCAA DI Men’s and Women’s Tennis National Championships at the USTA National Campus.  The men’s and women’s individual singles tournaments in Orlando will each feature 64 players, with 32 doubles pairs comprising both the men’s and women’s doubles tournaments.

 

READ MORE AT https://www.tennisindustry.org/cms/index.cfm/news/tennis-channel-usta-form-3-year-rights-deal-for-ncaa-d1-chps/

TENNIS INDUSTRY: PTR Celebrates 30 Years of Hosting Wheelchair Tennis Chps.

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, SC — Professional Tennis Registry (PTR) is pleased to announce it has been hosting the Wheelchair Tennis Championships on Hilton Head Island for 30 years. 

The world’s top players and Paralympics winners, as well as all levels, including first time players, compete in this event, which is part of the UNIQLO Wheelchair Tennis Tour and sanctioned by the United States Tennis Association (USTA Fall Southern Championship) and the International Tennis Federation (ITF).  ITF named this event one of only seven Grade A Junior Tournaments in the world.

To assist in player development, a free clinic will be held Wednesday evening, September 18.  Harlon Matthews will conduct an Instructing Wheelchair Tennis Certification Workshop on Sunday, September 22, from 9am-2pm.  This course trains both able-bodied and wheelchair players the nuances of teaching tennis to people in wheelchairs.

Tournament play begins at 9 am on Thursday September 19, and continues through Sunday, September 22, with Men, Women, Quad and Junior divisions.  Spectators are welcome to enjoy all of the exciting matches.  Able-bodied tennis players are invited to join in a Run-Roll Round Robin on Friday evening, September 20. 

READ MORE AT https://www.tennisindustry.org/cms/index.cfm/news/ptr-celebrates-30-years-of-hosting-wheelchair-tennis-chps/

TENNIS INDUSTRY: ITA Launches College Tennis Alumni Network

TEMPE, Ariz. (May 8) – In an effort to raise the profile of college tennis, engage alumni and provide a networking vehicle, the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) announced the launch of the College Tennis Alumni Network.
 
The primary purpose of the network is to help college tennis alumni connect, support current players and alumni as they transition into their chosen field of interest and build an advocate base for college tennis.
 
“Our mission at the ITA is to serve our membership in a variety of ways that improve the experience of the student-athlete, support their goals on and off the court, keep alumni engaged and grow the game of college tennis,” ITA President and Chief Executive Officer Timothy Russell said. “We are extremely excited to launch the Alumni Network and our expectation is that it will be another tool that helps fulfill our mission of serving the college tennis community.
 
“With Corey Pegram, our business and development manager, leading this initiative, we believe the it will be a powerful platform that enables current student-athletes and alumni to connect and keeps them engaged in college tennis throughout their lives,” Russell added.  
 
The online platform, built in partnership with Athlete Network, LLC., is free to join for any current and former college tennis players at the NCAA Division I, II, III, Junior College and NAIA levels, and provides the following benefits:
 
Networking feed that allows alumni to connect with fellow alumni in their area
Alumni events (to date, events have been held in Seattle, Chicago, New York and Milwaukee)
Job board with full-time employment and internship opportunities
Current college tennis news
Mentorship program that connects current players and recent graduates with experienced professional is their chosen field of study
 
To join, current student-athletes and alumni can visit https://www.collegetennisalumni.com/ . The first collegiate program that signs up 50 alumni members will receive a $500 grant from the ITA.

 

READ MORE AT https://www.tennisindustry.org/cms/index.cfm/news/ita-launches-college-tennis-alumni-network/

TENNIS INDUSTRY: 8th Annual National Wounded Warrior Tennis Camp May 6-9

SAN DIEGO (May 1, 2019) – The eighth annual National Wounded Warrior Tennis Camp will take place May 6-9, 2019 at the Balboa Tennis Club located at 2221 Morley Field Dr, San Diego, CA 92104.

Over 50 wounded, ill, and injured service members and military veterans from across the country will participate in the Tennis Camp, which is being hosted by the San Diego District Tennis Association (SDDTA), in collaboration with the United States Tennis Association, Naval Medical Center San Diego, and the Balboa Tennis Club.

The camp, which will offer on-court sessions from 10 a.m. to Noon and from 1 to 3 p.m. each day except Tuesday afternoon, will focus on helping participants improve their tennis skills through game-based clinics and instruction in an upbeat, fun-filled atmosphere.  The camp also provides emotional benefits and helps with community re-integration.  (There will be no on-court tennis session on Tuesday afternoon in order to give campers an opportunity for rest and relaxation.)

On Monday, May 6, the camp will get underway with its traditional Welcome Greeting, which is scheduled to take place in between 9:15 – 10:45 a.m. Staff and volunteers will personally greet and welcome each service member and military veteran as they arrive on a chartered bus at the Balboa Tennis Club to attend Opening Day of the camp.

"Every year we are amazed at how this event has helped inspire these special service members and military veterans. It truly makes a difference in their lives,” said Steve Kappes, Director of Military Outreach for the SDDTA. “This camp would not be possible without the donations and the support of we receive from many local, regional, and national organizations."

To view a local news report on a past National Wounded Warrior Tennis Camp, please click here.

For more information on the eighth annual National Wounded Warrior Tennis Camp, go to: http://www.sdwoundedwarriortennis.org and www.facebook.com/sdwoundedwarriorstennis.

The camp will be led by Balboa Tennis Club’s Tennis Director, Geoff Griffin, a USPTA-certified teaching professional for over 30 years, and other professional tennis instructors from the club. All have been involved in the club’s Wounded Warrior Tennis Program since its inception in 2009. Support staff from
Naval Medical Center San Diego will assist, along with trained volunteers from the tennis community.

About the Wounded Warrior Tennis Program – Since 2009, the Balboa Tennis Club, in collaboration with Naval Medical Center San Diego (NMCSD) and the San Diego District Tennis Association, has provided over 400 free weekly tennis clinics to more than 1000 wounded, ill, and injured service members and veterans from all the military services as part of NMCSD’s Wounded, Ill, and Injured Wellness Division, and the San Diego VA Medical Center’s Recreational Therapy Department.

These military tennis clinics and tennis camps have been recognized for their excellence and impact by Congressional and local representatives, senior officials from the Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs, and the leadership of the United States Tennis Association. They have become the model for similar tennis programs for wounded, ill, and injured service members and veterans that have been established at other major military medical centers, Warrior Transition Units, and VA hospitals across the country.

The Wounded Warrior Tennis Program has made a positive impact in the lives of wounded, ill, and injured service members and veterans. Therapeutically, tennis has helped them work on eye-hand coordination, balance, ability to transfer weight, endurance, strength, and overall fitness. In addition to the physical benefits, tennis enables them to learn a new sport, promotes socialization, decreases stress and anxiety, and helps with re-integration into the community.

 

READ MORE AT https://www.tennisindustry.org/cms/index.cfm/news/8th-annual-national-wounded-warrior-tennis-camp-may-6-91/