Melbourne, Australia, 8 June 2020 | Leigh Rogers

Tim Campbell is a popular Australian entertainer. He has starred in Home and Away and House Husbands, finished third as a contestant on Dancing With The Stars in 2007 and hosted a number of television programs including National Bingo Night, Wheel of Fortune and The Singing Bee. A regular performer at Melbourne’s Carols by Candelight, Campbell has also showcased his musical talents in theatre productions across the country and fronts his own band. During isolation, Campbell and his husband Anthony Callea have kept busy entertaining their social media followers with hilarious at-home skits and performances.

In our Celebrity Match series, Campbell reveals his love of tennis began at a young age …

Tell us about your tennis experience. Do you play?

My tennis prowess certainly ends at amateur status. But I have loved playing socially at the local courts growing up as a kid (apologies to the neighbours of the tennis courts for the extra balls) and even continue at the local courts of my place today – again, apologies to the neighbours of the tennis courts!

What is your best shot and why?

I am a Little Athletics kid from way back, so happy to chase the ball for a forehand down the line. Granted only about 50 per cent land in and the knees don’t allow for as much thrill of the chase anymore.

What is your earliest tennis memory?

I can certainly remember playing at the local Leumeah tennis courts and also much to Mum’s dismay,  sand being brought into the house post match. I equally have a distinct memory of watching the Australian Open on TV in the hot summer, while building Lego structures in the foreground. Who knew that both the Australian Open and Lego would be even more popular today. I was so post modern!

Do you have a favourite tennis memory?

If it’s not playing as a child as mentioned, then it’s having to explain the rules and scoring of tennis every year to Anthony Callea. EVERY YEAR. Okay, maybe this isn’t a favourite memory …

Do you remember the first match you saw live?

I was in Melbourne in 1994 and I saw an Australian Open first round match between Pete Sampras and the Aussie Joshua Eagle. I know it’s unpatriotic, but I did have a Sampras crush so was happy with his win. Soz Josh!

Who is your favourite tennis player to watch and why?

So many to choose from. I do still love to catch Roger Federer and Serena Williams in their matches. Growing up, I loved to watch the fire and passion of Boris Becker and Martina Navratilova.
Anyone who has that extra fire in their game, no matter their ranking or experience is always an absolute joy.

If you could meet any tennis player, who would it be and why?

I would love to meet Martina Navratilova one day. I have loved her passion and tennis game as a child right up to today … don’t ruin it for me Martina!

Finish these sentences –

The best part of the Australian Open is … the atmosphere. The event grows each year, showcased as world class and is certainly never a let down on the Melbourne calendar. Okay, that’s two sentences sorry. Now three, urgh!

Tennis is fun because … you know, TENNIS! Got it in one!