Yamba amputee Will Elrick lobs the ball for a serve at Grafton City Tennis Club.
Yamba amputee Will Elrick lobs the ball for a serve at Grafton City Tennis Club. Ayesha Beckman

Wheelchair tennis hits the courts

WHEELCHAIR TENNIS: Receiving a sports wheelchair to allow members of Grafton City Tennis Club to hit the court was one thing, but now wheelchair tennis players will have a chance to compete against other wheelchair players when the club hosts its first tournament this weekend.

Club president Ayesha Beckman said the idea for the tournament came when the sports wheelchair was delivered from Brisbane by a wheelchair tennis player.

"The day he came down it was raining, and he said it was disappointing because he would have loved to have gone out and had a hit, and said that we've got a great place to play tennis with all the hardcourts, so he suggested we should have a tournament, which planted the seed for us," Beckman said.

"He said if we ever have a wheelchair tournament to let him know and he will be here, and true to his word, he is going to come down and play this weekend.

"We want our club to be inclusive, and it's really exciting that we can have this tournament at our club."

Yamba tennis player Will Elrick was the first to use the club's wheelchair to play tennis, and will be one of the 12 players taking part in the tournament.

Beckman said the youngest player, a 10-year-old from Brisbane, will take on some local able-bodied juniors.

"He doesn't care who he plays, he just wants to play tennis and that's fantastic," Beckman said.

"It's going to be a fun day with a warm and welcoming atmosphere, we'll have a free sausage sizzle so I just hope people will come and watch something special and exciting."

The tournament will be on Saturday morning at Grafton City Tennis Club, with free entry.

Local Partners