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Scott Dunlop: The Problem With Completely Free Public Tennis

Tennis is the fastest growing major sport by a wide margin. People can play from age 5 to 105. Playing tennis is social and good exercise which helps people stay healthy, increases quality of life and lowers health care costs. There are an abundance of public tennis courts controlled by schools, municipalities and parks. These courts are open to the public and mostly free. This sounds good… but actually, it’s counterproductive.

Because public courts are mostly free, public authorities feel that they do not have to supervise or maintain them. This causes tennis courts to deteriorate, become unpleasant to play on and causes injuries. In addition, public authorities are generally not aware that tennis courts can be programmed and that people love participating in lessons and various competitions. Tennis can be played individually or in teams. Yet there are few if any public programs. Leagues like those in soccer, baseball and hockey are almost non-existent in tennis.

The reason for this is that public authorities generally do not enable booking strategies for tennis courts like those used for other facilities (which are usually better maintained). Sport organizers can reserve or pay to use fields, rinks, gyms and pools. Sometimes these facilities are open; sometimes they are reserved. These same principles should apply to tennis courts.

If tennis courts could be reserved some of the time to allow people to book playtimes and organizers to carry on programs, tennis courts would generate revenue, there would be more programming for players and the authorities would have more funds to maintain and upgrade the courts.

A New Reality By Nicolas Pereira

This past week in the World Team Tennis ‘Bubble” I have seen the efforts to keep everyone safe while carrying on a team competition with around 60/70 players and coaches onsite. Counting organizers, officials, media, and support personnel are around 150 people trying hard to make this happen. I am very impressed by how the strict protocol has been handled and how everyone is invested in making this event a success, but The Open is a completely different scale of details.

ONcourt Interviews NGTL Co-Founder Yves Boulais

It does not matter that you get your rating playing locally or that you had spent an insidious amount of money playing the ITF junior tour tournaments. Your rating is your level of play (you get no bonus for playing more or playing far away). This allows us to break free of the ITF competitive structure potentially saving us time, money, and headache. We see this as a great opportunity to improve the logistic of our sport.

Brandon Burke (son of ACE President Doug Burke) Elected to WTA Board

As revealed in a recent news release issued by the WTA Tour – Brandon Burke has been elected to the WTA Board of Directors (to start officially in September). Oncourt got together with Brandon to delve a bit more into his background and to gain some insight into this wonderful appointment he has attained at such a young age.