Tennis interest increases as Wimbledon hots up

PUBLISHED: 09:00 28 June 2011

(click on image for larger view)Juniors  enjoying the saturday morning session at  the tennis club, the Grove, Burnham- on - sea.

(click on image for larger view)Juniors enjoying the saturday morning session at the tennis club, the Grove, Burnham- on - sea.

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Tennis interest increases as Wimbledon hots up

TENNIS clubs in Weston are getting more members as Britain goes into Wimbledon fever.

Priory Tennis Club in Weston is among other clubs in the area whose membership increases as more exposure to the sport is on television.

Richard Gwyn, club coach and captain of the mens team at the club sees a rise every year in membership at this time.

He said: “We had a new member join us on Wednesday.

“It is at this time of year with the good weather and the fact that it is on the television that interest definitely picks up.

“We always notice membership picks up at this time of year, also with the French open and Queens Club competition more recently, it is in the public eye quite a lot.”

For two weeks, British tennis fans tune in to watch the Wimbledon coverage.

Last year 29.3 million people which equates to 51 per cent of the UK population, watched coverage of the championship on BBC television last year.

Richard said: “It can only be a good thing that it is on terrestrial television.

“Long may it continue for young people to get the chance to see it on the TV.

“It encourages peope to pick up a racquet and head outside.”

“We welcome it because it is a great opportunity to attract more players and we are always looking for new members.”

Avenue Tennis Club based in Burnham is holding its open day on the same day as the mens final in London on July 3.

Vinny Duddy, head coach of the club said: “During the Wimbledon weeks there is an increase in interest.

“People see it on the television and get excited by it and want to come down and get involved.

“Obviously they want to give it a try and we aim to encourage them through the open day.”

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