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West Side Tennis Club
Its History and My Experience
By Vicky McEvoy
Why is the West Side Tennis club called that when it resides in Queens, New York? Our esteemed President, Leslie Airola-Murveit, raised this question. It turns out that WSTC originally started in 1892 on Central Park West between 88th and 89th Street. It consisted of three clay courts and cost $10 to join with annual dues of $10. It expanded to five courts with two dressing rooms and a cold shower. From there it moved to 117th Street with 8 tennis courts and then to a spot between 228th Street and Broadway where members enjoyed 12 grass(!) courts and 15 clay courts. In 1911 the club hosted the Davis Cup which drew large crowds, and a decision was made to purchase a large plot that could accommodate the increased demand and interest in tennis. In 1912, the Forest Hills location was selected and the club opened in 1914 with the Tudor Clubhouse many of us have admired. In 1915, the USTA transferred the United States Lawn Tennis Association National Championship from the Newport Casino to the WSTC. This championship, the precursor to the US Open, loomed large for tennis aficionados from all over the world.
By Anne Guerrant
Here is a useful statistic that every tennis player should know. The first person or team that reaches 30 in a game has a 70% chance of winning that game. Most of us slack off in the first few points of a game when we should be focused and engaged from the very first point. A fun exercise is to play a practice set with a rule change. Instead of regular scoring give the game to the first person or team that gets to 30. This should help you develop the habit of playing with focus from the first point.
My Tennis Travels
By Linda Friedlander
Linda Friedlander is an 80+ player from upper state New York who is a retired high school teacher. She says proudly she has always worked to play: "My late husband (who did have a great sense of humor) informed me when I needed to travel in order to compete at age 50, ‘I am not paying to have you leave me.’ I told him I would find a way to afford myself and have had several interesting and different part time jobs to do just that.” Like many of us, Linda counts tennis experiences as highlights in her life.
Tennis opens many doors, many of them luxurious.
And I must admit I like luxury. I am an octogenarian and if you don’t know what that is, you will eventually and it is NOT a disease. For 25 years I played all four surfaces of USTA national tournaments. The Nationals are in good places with fine hotels. And I was delighted to go to Phoenix to represent Eastern in doubles Intersectionals last year.
Another fun, out-of-country experience was the June 2014 Mont Tremblant Cup, an ITF Senior event for US and Canadian players. Knowing my proximity to the site and my proclivity to say “Yes”, my San Diego friend Roz King, asked me to play for the US. Cap Tremblant, the official hotel, offered us a multi-bedroom suite for a fraction of the price charged during ski season. Our American team was together for a 5-day slumber party punctuated with matches, dinners out, wake-up yoga led by Burnett Herrick and much laughter. Read more
Linda is in the middle with white top
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