BACKHAND: Jacob Stenzel, 10, at a recent Hot Shots clinic at George Alder Tennis Centre.
BACKHAND: Jacob Stenzel, 10, at a recent Hot Shots clinic at George Alder Tennis Centre. David Nielsen

Top Tennis looking out for our next Hot Shots

WITH the Australian Open gracing our television sets this week, Top Tennis Academy manager and head coach Dan Mascall is calling on the people of Ipswich to take a swing at becoming the next Ash Barty or Alex De Minaur.

Top Tennis Academy is hosting its first open day of the year tomorrow, with gates open from 9am until noon.

"We like to do this at least twice a year, where we can get the whole community involved," Mascall said.

"It's a chance for players to come along, have a chat and get involved with our coaches, get out on court and have a fun time."

Mascall said the phones had been "ringing non-stop" this week in response to the action at the Australian Open, and he implored anyone considering taking up tennis to get down to the George Alder Tennis Centre at Leichhardt for a perfect introduction.

"We really encourage families to come down and be involved with all the on-court activities," the manager said.

"Or if they would prefer to do their own thing, they can borrow a racquet and some tennis balls and use our facilities as well.

"We have 12 great courts here - there is heaps of space."

The Hot Shots program, spearheaded by professional coach Lachlan Stephan, is the perfect introduction to tennis for young kids.

"Lachlan is one of our Hot Shots coaching gurus," Mascall said.

"The program uses modified equipment - racquets, tennis balls and depending on the age, a different size court as well.

"It's about progressing up to playing on a full tennis court, rather than 10-15 years ago when young kids had massive racquets and balls bouncing above their heads."

Mascall said there is never a better time to try your hand at tennis than right now.

"Tennis is a sport you can play for your entire life," he said.

"There's a great social aspect to playing tennis, and it's also physically challenging.

"You can get out there, have a great time and stay fit and healthy."

For further information on the open day, or to book in a free trial for your child, phone 32814700.

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