Legends aces loved kids

Dragon Bay treated Cayman’s school
children to some one-on-one time with tennis greats Jim Courier and Jimmy Arias
at a special exhibition and clinic at The Courts at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman.

It was last Tuesday and over 200
children from Red Bay, George Town, Savannah and East End primary schools
delighted in watching Courier and Arias, former world number one and five,
respectively, play some exhibition tennis at the clay courts.

Afterward, the tennis stars
thrilled some of the youngsters by offering them individual tips. The children
also took part in relay races and sports drills. The tennis greats were in
Cayman to promote the 2010 Legends Championships at The Courts at The
Ritz-Carlton from November 5-7 November.

Mike Ryan, developer of Dragon Bay
and the force behind the Legends Championships, greeted the children before the
tennis action began. he said: “Tennis is a sport that exercises both your mind
and body, and the great thing about it is that you can play at any age. We are
so lucky in the Cayman Islands that we can get the best of everything coming
here to us and I am thrilled that these two great players, Jim Courier and
Jimmy Arias, are here with us today.

“I hope that some of you get
inspired to play tennis and that one day you can be a member of a Cayman
Islands Davis Cup team and make us as proud as we are of Cydonie Mothersill,
who won the gold in the Commonwealth Games.”

Janay Goff, who teaches year four
students at Red Bay, said that the children were eager to take part in the
event. “I’m sure that most of them have never seen a tennis match before so
seeing something new like this is very exciting for them,” she said.

The day was extra special for Red
Bay student Evan Murray, who was celebrating his eighth birthday. After
enjoying a spontaneous rendition of Happy Birthday, Evan got to experience some
memorable playing time.

“I got to hit balls with Jim
Courier. It was really good. I had fun,” Evan said. Clutching an impromptu
present, he added: “Jim Courier gave me an autographed shirt for my birthday.”

The adults who accompanied the
children were equally impressed. Sophia Foster, PE Specialist at George Town,
spoke of how much such an event can mean to the students. “It’s a lovely idea.
The kids will understand that they are not the only ones who do PE and sports;
adults love it as well. The children are in the company of people who play
tennis professionally. I’m sure that they’re honoured.

SPORTSlegendsSTORY

They served the kids well. From left, Ryan, Courier, Arias.
Photo: Submitted

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