Warrnambool, 19 April 2011 | tennis.com.au

Funding provided by Tennis Australia’s National Court Rebate Scheme has enabled the Warrnambool Tennis Club to refurbish two of their old acrylic tennis courts with the modern Plexipave surface, as well as the lighting of their six porous courts.

“Construction for this $177,000 plus project commenced around this time last year and finished at Christmas 2010,” Sam Baulch, a Committee Member of the Warrnambool Tennis Club, said.

“Upgrading our courts and facilities has been in the pipeline for around five years, and to help fund the project we also received a grant from the state government, and the Warrnambool City Council matched their investment,” explained Mr Baulch. “Some of these grant funds were put towards a new toilet block.”

The former farmer, who has been involved in the club for the past 10 years, believes the new-look courts and lights will benefit the club’s members and the local community for many years to come.

“Our 250 member club offers a great range of programs for all ages and abilities, and with our recent upgrades we can now operate all year round and offer more evening activities.

“Warrnambool Tennis Club is very active, we run four big tennis tournaments a year plus a pennant competition, and we’re currently working with Tennis Australia to become a Regional Tennis Centre because Warrnambool is the major city in the area.

“To celebrate our facilities upgrade the club plans to host an official opening soon; and we welcome all of our members and tennis fans in our local community to come down and enjoy the festivities with us,” Mr Baulch added.

Current world No. 5 and the ambassador of the Court and Facilities program, Sam Stosur, said it is a very exciting time for tennis in Australia.

“We have a chance to really develop and foster tennis facilities around the nation and give every child the chance to play and enjoy tennis, a sport that has given me so much.

“The Courts and Facilities program is helping achieve this with 975 courts already approved for upgrades and more than $154 million generated in funding for facilities in the past three years.

“If we can keep building new courts and fixing some of those that are in need of repair, it will give kids more and more opportunities to play tennis on quality surfaces.

“Building tennis courts in communities is the best way to continue stimulating tennis at the grass roots and I want people to be able to discover tennis in their own neighbourhood.

“It is a great social activity for every age group and a fantastic way to keep active and fit.

“Tennis clubs are such an intrinsic part of rural communities and my hope is that these upgrades will encourage even more people to get out and enjoy the game and get the same amount of enjoyment from tennis as I have.”