| By Long Island Tennis Magazine Staff

Credit all photos to Emily DeAngeliss, Kate Berger and Kendall Delaney

With the new year upon us it means the Sportime World Tour is once again traveling the globe, bringing a taste of international tennis tournaments to local Sportime facilities. The first edition of the 2017 World Tour was held on Saturday at Sportime Syosset in an Australian Open theme.

“There is an accumulation of kids from all of the different clubs coming together, and they get to meet so many more people,” said Sebastian Wernecke, a Sportime teaching pro who was on court working with the kids. “We’ve got a great turnout, and it’s just a really fun event where the kids can play tennis and learn the foundation of the game.”

Each kid has their picture taken and receives a customized passport upon arriving which helps give the event its international feel.

“The event is designed for the youngest kids who maybe haven’t played a tournament or an official event yet, so they can come in and feel the excitement of playing,” said Jeffery Morys, the Tennis Director at Sportime Lynbrook who ran the event. “We look at this as our ‘tennis concert’ at the end of the year. We work on things throughout the year in class, and the kids are able to showcase what they’ve learned in front of their parents in a big event like this.

We hope everybody has a great time and feels confident going back home as well as learns the culture of tennis a little bit.”

As with all the world tour events, the kids were able to get on court and do a multitude of drills and hitting practices in a fun environment, regardless of the player’s level. In between the different groups on court, the players and parents were able to enjoy the music from DJ Curtis McCalla, a bouncy castle and delicious food.

“I have been playing tennis for two years and this has been my favorite event,” said nine-year old Kelsey Roth. “My favorite part was playing on court and practicing my serve.”

The next stop on the Sportime World Tour will be held on March 12 at Sportime Lynbrook for an Indian Wells-themed event. 

Click Here to see more photos from the first Sportime World Tour of the year.