Pro tennis tourney coming to Kelowna

Parkinson Recreation Centre will host a professional tennis tournament June 30 to July 8.

Joachim Nierfeld, a Kelowna resident and Tennis BC Regional director, says the  $15,000 Men`s Professional Futures event will be part of the national and international pro circuits, and will provide valuable ATP Tour world-ranking points to the competitors and is sanctioned by Tennis Canada as well as the International Tennis Federation.

Futures tournaments are the launching pad for professional tennis players in their journey to Grand Slam and Olympic competitions. The tournament will attract world-ranked players ranging from world ranking from 200 to 1,500, top NCAA Division I collegiate players, as well as some of B.C. and Canada`s top adult and junior competitors.

"This elite tournament will inspire our rising junior stars and provide great entertainment for sports fans in the region,"  Nierfeld said.

In conjunction with this competition, the Little Aces Community Tennis Program will also be featured. This new community initiative, for players 12 years of age and under, will demonstrate the new equipment to help young kids engage into the sport for a lifetime.

The program has been developed by Tennis Canada and Tennis BC in partnership with the City of Kelowna and the Kelowna School District.

Nierfeld also organises the Miele Regional Adult League Championships.  Tennis BC Chief Executive Officer, Ryan Clark, notes, `We have been growing grass-roots programs in the region over the past four years and now is the time to add larger events to bring profile to the high quality work that the local leaders have been doing," said Ryan Clark, chief executive officer for Tennis B.C.

Nierfeld has assembled an organizational team to help launch the tournament and build up its profile in future years, a team that includes of Ian Cull (UBC Okanagan associate vice-president), Gilles Dufort (Harvest Golf Club general manager),  Rob Ahlgren (owner, Yellow House Restaurant) and Gordon Fitzpatrick (owner,Cedar Creek Estate Winery).


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