Trophies from one of the world’s oldest tennis tournaments will drop into the Paramount Tennis Club on Friday, in an event Tennis NSW Central West participation leader Matt Edwards hopes will boost participation in the sport.
Touring with Sydney International will also bring a host of Canberra academy coaches to Dubbo, giving local juniors the chance to learn from some of the best.
Edwards said photo opportunities with the men’s, women’s singles and doubles trophies would precede on-court activities, with anyone welcome to attend from 1pm.
“We’re very lucky in Australia … that we have the Sydney International,” he said of the event that dates back to 1885.
Australian young guns Ashleigh Barty and Alex de Minaur have already announced they’ll be returning to the 2019 tournament, and will be hoping to “hit the ground running” in what will be an early test of their Grand Slam credentials.
“I know it's a little bit far away from Dubbo, but it’s really inspiring for us to be able to see those players while the event is on,” Edwards said.
He hoped the chance to learn from some of the best would be “really inspiring for those kids that haven’t played before, but also those that are already playing but looking to take it to the next level”.
“It will be a great opportunity for the kids to see that, as well as for my coaching team at Paramount to see how things can be done differently.”
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The trophies and coaches began their regional tour this week with visits to Newcastle and Forster and will travel to Gunnedah before landing in Dubbo on Friday.
Bathurst, Young, Wagga Wagga, Canberra and Wollongong round out the schedule.
The tour is a precursor to Tennis NSW’s Open Season, an initiative encouraging tennis clubs to open their courts to the public to coincide with the Australian Open.
“That’s when most people are inspired to pick up a racket and have a bash,” Edwards said.
“So we want to make it as accessible as possible to go and have a try.”
Touring with Sydney International will run from 1pm until 5pm at Dubbo’s Paramount Tennis Club on Friday, December 7.
People will be able to have photo opportunities with the trophies from 1.30pm, with on-court games and activities to run from 2-4pm.
In addition, free tickets to next year’s Sydney International will be up for grabs.
The 2019 event was officially launched on Tuesday, and will run from January 6-12.
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