Tens of thousands of budding young tennis players are picking up a racket and playing competitive tennis as part of the nationwide Sainsbury’s School Games Level 3 Festivals this month.
There are 46 county festivals taking place across the country over the summer and more than 25,000 primary school pupils are taking part in the schools tennis competitions.
Over 2,500 young people took part in ten sports at the Hampshire and Isle of Wight School Games Level 3 Festival. Pupils from Crondall – North East Hants; St Swithuns Primary – Portsmouth; Meon Cross – Fareham; Halterworth - Test Valley; St Marys – Basingstoke; Lymington - New Forest; Alverstoke – Gosport; Horndean – Havant; Bentley - East Hants; Bartley - New Forest; Springhill – Southampton; Cowes – IOW; Haylands – IOW; Rucstall – Basingstoke; St Anthonys – Fareham; Weeke – Toynbee; Fair Oak – Hamble; Arreton – IOW; St Johns – Havant were victorious in their local borough or partnership Year 3&4 Mini Tennis Red competition to earn their place in the School Games Finals.
Tennis was one of the highlights of the day with Crondall Primary School emerging as the winners.
Tennis Development Manager, Zoe Bambridge, said: “We have seen record figures of participants taking part in the local borough events to lead onto the County finals. The County finals were very successful and in true British weather we braved the rain. It was great to see so many children competing and enjoying the event.”
Paul Williams, Schools Tennis Manager at the Tennis Foundation added: “School Games Festivals provide a great opportunity for school pupils to pick up a racket, many for the first time, and supports British tennis’ mission of getting more people playing tennis, more often.
“With more than 16,300 schools supported through the Aegon Schools Tennis programme with free teacher training, resources and equipment and 50,000 primary and secondary school pupils playing in schools tennis competitions every year there’s never been a better time to get involved.”
The School Games was created to encourage young people to play more competitive sport in school as part of plans to leave a lasting legacy from the London 2012 Olympics.
Young people taking part in the School Games will have the chance to compete in a range of Olympic and Paralympic sports with competitions progressing from school up to national levels.
For more information on the Tennis Foundation’s support for primary, special and secondary schools please visit www.schoolstennis.org