The activities are getting increasingly intense at the Ida's Valley club, the new headquarters of Federico Coppini's Tennis World Academy, who with his projects is revitalizing a splendid area in the Stellenbosch area, South Africa. Among the most valuable initiatives is the Tennis World Tour, a tournament circuit that has brought sociality, competition and human growth to the whole community.
Apart from the results, the project’s impressing with its continuity: a year and a half have passed since the first tournaments were held, and since then 87 tournaments have been played, hosting the beauty of 534 players. These are extraordinary figures, which among other things allow to raise funds for the projects of the Tennis World Foundation.
Speaking of the foundation, in the Under-10 tournament that took place on Friday 18, March a little boy who recently entered the Tennis World System stood out: his name is Thiego Andrews, he is nine years old and had started playing tennis just four months ago thanks to TWF initiatives. Without the foundation's intervention, he would never have been able to hold a racquet in his hands. Thiego got to know tennis, got passionate and is now incredibly involved in the project, to the point of coming to train every day.
In the eight-player draw he lost in the quarter-finals, but played very well against Wilhelm Bouwer, who hails from Somerset West and who is more used to playing these kinds of events than he is. Andrews lost to West 6-3, 7-5, but the foundation staff are extremely satisfied with Andrews’ performance. His attitude is the greatest satisfaction for those who spend time and resources to give the less well-off kids a chance. The results will come.
Meanwhile, the tournament experienced a family final between two boys from the Tennis World Academy. The title went to Jean-Luck Bernardo (born in 2012), in the final against Matteo Coppini (born in 2013). It was a balanced match, closed with a score of 6-3, 7-6.
The youth event was the starter of the Open tournaments, which took place over the weekend of 19-20 March. To make room for everyone, two events were organized, one called the Platinum event (for the strongest) and the other, Gold.
In the first board there was a truly remarkable level, in which the “mission” of the foundation – for once – gave way to pure entertainment and competitive spirit. This was of great satisfaction for Federico Coppini, who saw his player Kris Van Wyk win. Van Wyk’s a 25-year-old from Cape Town who has just returned from an interesting and formative experience in American colleges. Now he is finishing right in Stellenbosch and took the title without losing a set, winning a splendid final against Josh Luck, who’s one year older than him and has extensive international experience: not only has he accumulated a good university period in Tel Aviv, but has also played several tournaments that are valid for the world rankings, and a few years ago also had an ATP ranking, as the world no. 1518 in singles and the world no. 1278 in doubles.
The match between Van Wyk and Luck (that the former won 6-4, 7-6) was the match of the weekend, bringing to Stellenbosch quality and spectacle that the local athletes (especially the younger ones) are not used to seeing. Watching such strong players certainly inspired the 16-year-old Anathi Nofotyo, a boy from the academy who did well for himself in the backdraw, the consolation event reserved for the losers in the first round. He reached the final, showing important signs of growth.
On the same date the “Gold” event took place, open to players who do not exceed the 3.1 ranking in the Tennis World Tour ranking system. In a very numerous and rather tiring draw, experience emerged as the winner: 52-year-old Warrick Dreyer won. Seeded fourth, he managed his energies in the best way: not only did he not lose any set, but he also never conceded more than three games in a single set. Taking a look at the results of the academy, Giacomo Coppini (Matteo's older brother) stood out: after losing in the second round of the main draw, he imposed himself in the backdraw confirming a good quality of play and a good athletic performance, given he’d played five matches in two days.
In short, a slightly different weekend compared to those that have been seen in the last year and a half: the Platinum scoreboard offered high quality tennis, with several players able to play at an almost professional level.
In addition to the spectacle and prestige they have given the Tennis World Tour, some matches ignited the spirit of emulation of the kids. The history of tennis also shows that champions are born just like that.
Now the circuit moves to open, with the Under-10, Under-12 and Under-14 tournaments and as always with the Open circuit.
We remind you that all the tournaments are included in a circuit that will end in November with the final Masters event.