Some of Australia’s biggest and up-and-coming tennis stars will battle it out this weekend in Australia’s fourth richest tennis tournament.
The 2012 Tie-Break Shootout, to be held at Penrith’s Woodriff Gardens Tennis Centre, will see some of this country’s best male and female tennis players competing in an abbreviated format of the game.
“We’re looking at having 60 to 70 of the best players in the country at the tournament, and they’re at the level of players we don’t usually get out our way,” said Chris Woodland, CEO of Nepean District Tennis Association (NDTA).
The Tie-Break Shootout, now in its second year, is the brainchild of the NDTA and was created to lift the profile of tennis in the local area.
“We wanted to raise the profile of tennis in the Penrith area, so we sat down and looked at what we could do and we figured a high prize money event would attract some higher level players,” Mr Woodland said.
“Another main reason for the tournament is we are trying to get a premier clay court centre in Penrith and this tournament helps us show the people and politicians of Penrith that we are serious about our tennis here and we are capable of running and holding a high level event.”
Treasurer of NDTA, Dennis Sales, believes the Tie-Break Shootout will benefit the Association for years to come.
“The tournament shows that an organisation such as Nepean District can run major tennis tournaments,” he said.
“If we can get this off the ground properly then we could be candidates for future Davis Cup ties and for future interstate and international matches.”
One of the many competitors taking part in the tournament is rising star and 17-year-old local, Jay Andrijic.
The South Penrith resident, who has been playing the sport since the age of nine, said he’s looking forward to the challenge the unique format will bring.
“You can get on the court and last for a minute or it could just keep going and going… anything can happen and you’ve just got to be on your game from the start,” he said.
“It’s a different format and it attracts a lot of good players, which is good for the club.”
The 2012 Tie-Break Shootout is on this weekend, November 24 and 25, at the Nepean District Tennis Association. Spectators are welcome to attend the free event.
Male and female players will battle it out for a share of $17,000 in prize money.