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Tennis Briefs: Live US Open Draw; QuickStart; Villages Playday; More

August 26, 2010 09:09 AM
Tennis at The Villages
Viera Regional Park QuickStart Tennis
Live 2010 US Open Draw Today at Noon on ESPN2

On Thursday at noon the the 2010 US Open men's and women's singles draws will be made, and you can follow the draw live at noon EST on ESPN2.

Chris McKendry will host the show along with Mary Joe Fernandez and Brad Gilbert, and Patrick McEnroe on-site at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows.

The Villages to Host USTA League Information Playday in September

The Villages, a tennis hotbed for senior players experienced and new to the game, will be hosting the "USTA League Information Playday @ The Villages" on Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010, beginning at 11 a.m. at the Glenview Champions Tennis Club.

"Tennis is very popular at The Villages, and tennis organizers are looking to get more players representing The Villages on USTA League teams so they can represent The Villages at regional, state, and national league competitions," said USTA Florida Senior Mixed, Senior Combo and Super Senior Leagues Coordinator Jodi Manning.

A complimentary lunch will be served for players who participate in the "Hit for Prizes" and round robin play starting at 11:00 a.m. Participants will also be entered in a raffle to win exciting door prizes. The event is also open to fans and families who want to watch, and food concessions will be available.

Prizes are compliments of Wilson Sporting Goods and USTA Florida. A leagues information booth will be available throughout the event with USTA Florida staff on hand for Q's & A's.

For additional information on the USTA League Information Playday @ The Villages, call Tim Farwell at (352) 753-1317.

QuickStart Tennis Program Continues to Grow at Viera Regional Park; New Session Starting

Senior Tennis of Volusia, Inc., a USTA Community Tennis Association has been offering tennis to ages 6-11 since March 2009 at the Viera Regional Park, serving more than 200 children since that time. 

The program runs every six weeks until early June. The next six-week session begins Sept. 8, 2010. Classes are one-hour each on Wednesdays and Fridays from 4-5 p.m. for the 6-8 age group, and 5-6 p.m. for the 9-11 age group.  QuickStart is a format introduced by the USTA to help kids learn tennis quickly and within their level of capability. 

"The courts are sized to the physical capacity of the children, and the racquets and balls used are controllable," says program director Barbara Wong. "The kids have more fun and are likely to continue playing tennis for a lifetime." 

The program at the Viera Regional Park focuses on group play. Kids learn the basic fundamentals of tennis with special attention on focus, concentration, balance, control, court movement, and hand-eye coordination. To-date there have been seven six-week sessions for each age group. With an average participation of 30 students per session, more than 200 children have been through the classes. The program has a repeat student participation of almost 50%. The program provides a non-pressure environment which increases the success rate, and by the 4th to 5th week of the session the children are playing tennis and enjoy competing against others within their age level. The top three in each age level plays the coach for the final prize of Gold, Silver, and Bronze medals. 

For more information and to register for the QuickStart tennis program call Barbara Wong at (321) 631-0419, (386) 846-2746, or email stov@cfl.rr.com.

ITF Approves Rule Change for 10-and-under Competition

The International Tennis Federation this week approved an amendment to the Rules of Tennis for 10-and-under competition. The change, approved overwhelmingly by the ITF Annual General Meeting, is designed to make tennis easier and more fun for children and to ensure that competition is appropriate for those 10 and under.

The rule will go into effect in January 2012 and will mandate modified courts that are smaller in size than the 78-foot courts currently used for tournament play. It will also mandate low compression tennis balls that move slower through the air and bounce lower and are thus better suited to the size and abilities of younger children.

"This is a great step forward for tennis, and I thank the ITF AGM for their support of this important initiative," said ITF President Francesco Ricci Bitti. "Tennis 10s will improve the way we introduce tennis to young players."

"We applaud today's decision and have supported the ITF throughout this process," says Lucy S. Garvin, chairman of the board and president, USTA. "We're very excited about what this change means for the future of tennis."

Tennis 10s is similar to the USTA's 10-and-under tennis initiative, which embraces the tools of the QuickStart Tennis play format -- with its smaller courts, slower-moving and lower-bouncing balls, and smaller and lighter racquets?to make tennis more accessible for children 10 and under.

"Scaling tennis to the size of children will promote greater participation and ensure that young kids will be able to play tennis much more quickly," says Kurt Kamperman, Chief Executive, Community Tennis, USTA. "That is critical to the long-term growth of our sport and ultimately will help us develop new generations of players and champions."

QuickStart on Arthur Ashe Stadium Court During 2010 US Open

The USTA will feature a series of Kids Tennis initiatives at the 2010 US Open, including a QuickStart Tennis demonstration in Arthur Ashe Stadium, and a full day of QuickStart Tennis activities during Labor Day weekend on Saturday, Sept. 4. Kids Tennis programming will also be prominently featured on Arthur Ashe Kids Day presented by Hess, and will have a strong presence in SmashZone, located in the Indoor Tennis Center. 

"Getting kids more involved in the sport of tennis is one of the USTA's highest priorities," said Lucy S. Garvin, chairman of the board and president, USTA. "I can think of no better way to promote the USTA's Kids Tennis initiatives than by featuring them prominently at the US Open, the world's highest annually attended sporting event."

The 2010 US Open will feature two demonstrations of the QuickStart Tennis play format, including a center court demonstration in Arthur Ashe Stadium prior to the night session on Thursday, Sept. 9 that will feature kids from tennis clubs in Chicago and August, Ga. QuickStart Tennis will also be demonstrated on Saturday, Sept. 4 on Court 12 from 1-7 p.m., offering families the chance to pick up a racquet, work with USTA coaches, and experience the benefits of the play format for themselves.

SmashZone, the premier fan interactive attraction in tennis located in the Indoor Tennis Center, will highlight Kids Tennis programming with a number of 36 ft. courts for kids and their parents to use. One new feature will be the Get Sized Right racquet displays and other information designed to teach parents more about Kids Tennis. Two-time US Open champion Tracy Austin will conduct a QuickStart Tennis clinic in SmashZone during the August 31 Family Day, and U.S. Fed Cup Captain and EveryoneBreathe.com spokesperson Mary Joe Fernandez will also conduct a similar clinic. Arthur Ashe Kids Day will also provide families the opportunity to view and experience the QuickStart Tennis play format.  Two of the outer courts will be entirely dedicated to QuickStart Tennis, and a QuickStart Tennis demonstration will be featured in the Stadium Pre-Show with players from local NJTL chapters.

US Open Broadcast in 3D for 1st Time

The USTA announced Panasonic has become an official sponsor of the US Open in a new three-year agreement, and working with CBS Sports, the USTA and Panasonic will spearhead the first-ever 3D broadcasts of the tournament. CBS Sports will produce 3D versions of all the Arthur Ashe Stadium matches that it broadcasts in High Definition on Labor Day Weekend and on finals weekend, Sept. 10-12. These matches will be made available nationwide via DirecTV's exclusive dedicated 3D entertainment channel, "n|3D Powered by Panasonic" (DirecTV channel 103).

On-site at the 2010 US Open, Panasonic will have three 3D viewing galleries -- a 3D Panasonic Showcase located in the former International Tennis Hall of Fame Gallery on the floor level of Louis Armstrong Stadium, and another in SmashZone, the US Open's interactive tennis experience for fans and families located in the state-of-the-art indoor facility and one more in the South Plaza area. Panasonic and DirecTV also will provide the US Open semifinal and final matches live in 3D to hundreds of TV retail outlets nationwide, including scores of Best Buy stores, as part of the September 10-12 "National 3D Demo Days" organized by the Consumer Electronics Association.   

The 3D broadcasts will use a separate production team and equipment from the traditional HD broadcasts of the tournament.  Plans call for six camera rigs (each holding two high definition cameras), two special 3D production trucks, and a unique 3D-dedicated CBS Sports broadcast team. CBS has designed the 3D camera placements lower to the court than traditional TV locations, in order to capture the close-up and personal, athletic dimension of tennis that make 3D such a powerful experience. In order to view the US Open in 3D, fans must have 3D televisions and 3D eyewear and be subscribers to DirecTV.





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