A new tennis tournament is getting set to make its debut. From March 29th to April 12th St Lucia’s top players will be competing in the McVities Junior Championships and Listerine Open at the Kenneth Wriggler King Multi-Purpose Center at the Gardens in Castries. The event was born out of a partnership between the Tiger Tennis Club and Renwick and Companies brands. Club president and coach, Sirsean Arlain gave us a breakdown.
“McVities biscuits and KC Candy are sponsoring the junior event, that’s the 7’s all the way to the 18’s. And then Listerine is the main sponsor for the senior event along with Neutrogena Suncare products.”
Arlain was not surprised by the company’s decision to come on board as they have an association with the sport that goes back a couple of decades.
“The individual brands really wanted to do something so they picked it up and are running with it as we speak. Renwick, back in the nineties, was actually the sponsor of our junior national championships in December. So as far as I’m concerned it was pretty much a no brainer in going after that company for sponsorship, looking to restart such a great tradition. We hope to get it started this year with this event and make it an annual thing. Of course we need to get the numbers in but we’re really hoping that it is a well attended event.”
Tiger Tennis is actively seeking to add more events to the local tennis calendar as a drive to get the younger set more preparation for international play.
“We really feel that there needs to be a lot more tournaments here amongst our juniors. So we’ve decided to host four events this year, this McVities Junior Championships and of course the Listerine Open will be the first. The other will be the second annual Voyager Open. We have two more. One will be in October. We hope to link something with our own St Lucian heritage being that it’s creole month. We’re playing with the ‘coup de main’ name. In November we’re thinking of having a kids special event.
“Although Halloween would have already gone by, we’re looking to do something with that theme. Because we really feel that the kids need to play a lot more matches if they’re gonna go out there and compete on an international level. We’re just pushing as much as we can to get them in recognized national competition.”
But it’s not just medals and trophies on offer. Rankings are also up for grabs.
“Due to the success of the Voyager last year our national association has sanctioned our events so all our events are going to have national ranking points at stake. So there’s a lot in there for the kids and also adult players.”
Entry forms will be available at the National Tennis Center in Beausejour, Gros Islet as well as the host site. For more information players can also visit the Tiger Tennis page on Facebook.