Australia’s greatest ever wheelchair tennis player David Hall OAM (Sydney, NSW), four-time Paralympian Ben Weekes (Strathfield, NSW) and Australian representative Keegan O’Chee (Eastwood, NSW) were on hand at City Community Tennis in Surry Hills on Saturday to launch the first Wheelchair Tennis Hub in New South Wales.
Tennis Australia is working to strengthen and develop a strong national foundation and pathway for wheelchair tennis building on the success of Australia’s wheelchair tennis team at the Rio Paralympics last year.
The new wheelchair tennis hub will give athletes of all abilities the opportunity to play tennis under the guidance of specialised wheelchair tennis coaches. It aims to help discover the next generation of wheelchair tennis talent and increase the breadth of the sport across the nation.
The new hub will provide an opportunity for people to socialise, connect and play every Saturday from 2.00 pm to 5.00 pm.
“This new Wheelchair Tennis Hub at Surry Hills will be a fantastic place for the public of all ages and abilities to come together and have a go at tennis on a weekly basis,” six-time Paralympian David Hall said.
“There is increased interest in tennis since the Rio Paralympics and the tournaments across the summer and this latest initiative will provide an opportunity for new people to get involved.”
Pat Jensen, Director of City Community Tennis added: “We’re really excited about promoting the sport further and not only helping to develop the next generations of wheelchair champions here in Sydney, but also making it an alternative choice for social tennis play.
“It’s hugely important for people to know that if they have an injury, a mobility issue or disability that they can still play tennis.
“We’ve always strived to be accessible and inclusive in our programming and with our central location and with the support of our community partners we hope it will be easier for people to come down to try wheelchair tennis.”
Victoria launched the first wheelchair tennis hub in Australia last September with the state seeing a 900% increase in wheelchair tennis participation.
The NSW Wheelchair Tennis Club has been set up by Tennis Australia and Tennis NSW in collaboration with City Community Tennis, Wheelchair Sports NSW and University of Technology Sydney.
For more information or to register your interest please contact Sylvia DeAngelis at [email protected].