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Wimbledon excitement leads tennis clubs to open doors for future stars
TENNIS clubs around Essex are throwing their doors open this summer in a bid to attract more people to the sport.
Inspired by Andy Murray’s men’s singles triumph at Wimbledon last year – and the annual upsurge in interest when the Grand Slam tournament is on – has prompted the Lawn Tennis Association to set up the Great British Tennis Weekend.
Four weekends have been set aside for the event this summer and LTA tennis development manager Neil Twitchett is hoping to build on the success of last summer’s event.
“We held the Great British Tennis Weekend in August last year in 39 venues around the country,” Twitchett said.
“The aim was to get the benefit of Andy winning Wimbledon and going into the US Open.
“We have extended it this year so club coaches and the clubs themselves can run their own events.
“It’s a chance to play tennis for free, whether it is as a family, receiving some coaching or competitively.”
Around 1,000 events have been planned this year and these started on the weekend of May 17 and 18.
Essex’s Great British Tennis Weekend sessions start on June 21 and 22 with more events on June 28 and 29.
The final weekend will take place on July 19 and 20.
Clubs are holding various events at different times throughout the weekends and details can be found at https://clubhouse.lta.org.uk/OpenDays.
Would-be players can also sign up for the events on line at the same address.
Where can you play?
* JUNE 21: David Lloyd Basildon, David Lloyd Southend, Garon Tennis Academy (Southend).
* JUNE 22: David Lloyd Basildon, David Lloyd Southend, Garon Tennis Academy.
* JUNE 29: Westcliff Hardcourts LTC, Southend Lawn LTC, Kent Elms LTC, Thorpe Bay LTC, Westcliff Lawn LTC, David Lloyd Basildon, David Lloyd Southend.
* JULY 19: David Lloyd Basildon, David Lloyd Southend, Garon Tennis Academy.
* JULY 20: Palmers Sports & Fitness Tennis Club (Grays), David Lloyd Basildon, David Lloyd Southend, Garon Tennis Academy.