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WTA Tennis




Announcing Try-outs for 2009 US OPEN Ball Runners

April 6, 2009 04:52 PM

Elite Fitness to Hold Local U.S. Open Ballperson Tryouts  

Milwaukee, Wis., April 1, 2009 – Have you ever watched a professional sports tournament and dreamed of being a part of it?  Now local athletes have that chance.  Youth and adults ages 14and older are invited to test their athletic skills on the tennis courts at Elite Fitness & Racquet Ball Clubs for a chance to be selected as the winner of Elite’s 2009 U.S. Open ballperson tryouts.  The winner will head to New York for a chance to work at the U.S. Open.

Ball people are those energetic athletes who retrieve the tennis balls that have gone out of play on the court and help keep things running smoothly during a professional tournament. Key criteria for ballpersons include:

          1. Speed & coordination
          2. Strong throwing arm
          3. Ability to catch
          4. Attentiveness
          5. Positive attitude & enthusiasm

There are two different positions requiring either quickness and hand-eye coordination (net position) or a strong throwing arm (backcourt).   While tennis experience is helpful, anyone with athletic ability is invited to try out.

Tryouts will take place on Saturday, May 2 at the Highlander Elite Club (13825 W. Burleigh Road) in Brookfield between Noon–3 p.m. but registration ends at 2:45 p.m.   

Elite will award the winner and a guest with airfare and lodging to the U.S. Open ballperson tryouts* which take place on Thursday, June 25, 2009 at the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing, New York. Tryout rain date is Friday, June 26.  
Optional Elite Ballpersons Training Clinics will be held at the North Shore Elite Club (5750 N. Glen Park Road) in Glendale on Tuesday, April 28 from 4-5 p.m. and at Highlander Elite on Saturday, May 2 at 11:30 a.m. to help participants prepare for their tryouts.

Confirmed judges for the tryouts will include Randy Stolpe, Director of Elite Tennis, Erika Wentz, USTA Midwest Section Tennis Service Representative and Doug Russell, morning show host for Milwaukee SportsRadio 1250 AM.  Participants can pick up registration/waiver forms and rules at any of Elite’s four locations or download the forms online at www.eliteclubs.com.  Bring completed registration/waiver forms to the tryouts.  In addition, participants can register onsite the day of the event.

“We are so excited to offer this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help a local athlete get up close and personal with some of the greatest tennis players in the world,” said Kay Yuspeh, owner of Elite Fitness & Racquet Clubs. “No matter what your age, it’s hard not to get excited about the chance to be on the courts where legends like John McEnroe and Billie Jean King have played.”

The U.S. Open ballperson tryouts annually draw about 400 youth and adults vying for about 70 new open spots.  If the winning Elite local ballperson makes it through the first tryout, Elite will cover the cost to send them and one guest back to New York in mid-July for a second one-day tryout.

The Qualifications Tournament takes place at the Arthur Ashe Stadium from August 25-28, 2009 and the U.S. Open main draw takes place from August 31- Sept. 13, 2009.  Rookie ballpersons receive an hourly wage in addition to the chance to be on the same court with tennis stars such as Roger Federer and Serena Williams and perks such as a new Ralph Lauren tennis uniform.  

Should the Elite ballperson be selected for the final Qualifications Tournament and/or U.S. Open main draw, Elite will provide the winning ballperson and a guest with airfare and lodging.   Elite will also assist any winner under 18 years of age to get New York working papers which are required to work the tournaments.   *Youth must be 14 years old by the first U.S. Open ballperson tryouts in New York on June 25, 2009.   Complete rules for Elite’s ballperson tryouts are available at www.eliteclubs.com and at each Elite location.  For additional information contact Christel Henke, 414-332-2933, chenke@prworks.biz or Julie Stolper, 262-650-9852, jstolper@wi.rr.com.