Darwin NT, Australia, 28 May 2015 | NTG Newsroom

Australian tennis hero Todd Woodbridge today cast an approving eye over the progress of Darwin’s temporary grass courts at Marrara Sports Complex.

The courts are being prepared to host world class tennis when the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group quarterfinal tie between Australia and Kazakhstan takes place from 17-19 July.

Construction of the temporary grass courts, which comprise a grass variety known as Legend Couch, is progressing well. Temporary grandstands will arrive next month to seat about 4500 spectators who will be treated to Australia’s first World Group quarterfinal since 2006.

Sport and Recreation Minister Gary Higgins today met Woodbridge at Marrara, where they also took a look at the proposed site of the Northern Territory Regional Tennis Centre. The proposed site for the tennis facility is adjacent to Larrakia Park.

“Tickets are selling fast for the Davis Cup and there is a great deal of excitement among tennis fans both here in the Territory and across Australia,” Minister Higgins said.

“We’re expecting a significant number of interstate and international visitors for this event, and I was pleased to welcome back Todd Woodbridge to Darwin, a legend of the game and part of Australia’s winning Davis Cup teams in 1999 and 2003.

“This event will showcase Darwin as an iconic tourism destination during our enviable Dry Season period. Broadcast coverage of this event will also promote Darwin to a wide international audience.”

Minister Higgins said staging the event at Marrara further proved the NT can host world class sporting fixtures and adds to an impressive sporting calendar in Darwin.

“The Government is committed to providing top flight sporting facilities for Territorians to enjoy sport, and we’re also positioning the Territory to continue to attract high calibre events,” Mr Higgins said.

“We’ve committed $8 million towards the construction of an NT Regional Tennis Centre here at Marrara that will provide a first-class home for tennis in the Territory.”

Famed doubles player Woodbridge – who with Mark Woodforde formed formidable duo The Woodies, winning 11 Grand Slam doubles titles and five consecutive Wimbledon doubles titles – said Darwin’s Dry Season climate provided a perfect setting for the hotly contested tie.

“Darwin is the perfect place to hold a Davis Cup tie in the middle of winter. It’s fantastic to see the grass courts taking shape and I know both teams will be excited to play here in mid-July,” he said.

“The proposed NT Regional Tennis Centre is an important step towards growing the sport in the Top End and strengthening grassroots and high performance tennis in Darwin.

“The world-class venue will give the Territory more opportunities to attract and host major tennis events like the Davis Cup while also providing a top quality facility for the local community.”

Woodbridge said the proposed project, a partnership between the NT government, Tennis NT and Tennis Australia, will deliver a venue featuring 15 international standard Plexipave courts, including one show court, four ANZ Tennis Hot Shots courts and a multi-purpose clubhouse.

“The facility will also be designed to provide a range of multi-use facilities including community meeting and education rooms, a flexible show court for the staging of sports and cultural events, conference and function capabilities and an administrative and media space,” he said.

NT Regional Tennis Centre concept design








Tickets to the Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group quarterfinal tie in Darwin are available through Ticketek http://premier.ticketek.com.au/.