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From 80 to 8; Players of All Ages Hit the Hilton Head Courts

March 3, 2008 06:13 PM


New League Established for Tennis Players 75 and Older
If you didn't yet believe you're never too old to play tennis, there's a new tennis league in town that's out to make a believer of you yet.
Last week marked the beginning of the area's first-ever Super Senior 75s USA Team Tennis league, in which more than 70 players, including about 20 who are 80 or older, have signed up to compete.
As far as league coordinator Don Grider can tell, it's the first such league in the nation, continuing Hilton Head Island's trend-setting when it comes to Super Senior

Super Seniors

"We don't copy here, we start here," Grider said. "We started the Super Seniors 12 years ago, and we added the 70s four or five years ago, and now we've added the 75s."
Grider has watched his previous creations spread across the country -- the Super Senior 60s held their first national championship this year, and the 70s are likely to follow suit in the near future.
A glance at the Tennis Association of Hilton Head Island roster suggests to Grider that this newest league will expand quickly, as well -- he said about 60 area 3.0 players will age into the 75s division in the next three years.
"It's not going to grow as fast as the other ones," he said. "But we're going to grow."
Eight teams will play in the new league -- six in the 3.0 division and two in the 3.5 division -- bringing the total of area Super Senior teams to 52.
The fall season of USTA Junior Team Tennis will get under way in early October, with teams playing out of Bluffton, Wexford, Beaufort, Sea Pines Racquet Club and Chaplin Park. All five teams are looking for players ages 8 to 18; players must be USTA members. Matches include boys and girls singles and doubles, as well as mixed doubles.
Call league coordinator Bob Brown at 290-2833 for more information.
Not to be outdone by the kids, a new edition of USA Team Tennis for adults will begin Oct. 27 and run through Jan. 13, including a minimum of eight weekend matches. Teams representing Hilton Head Island, Bluffton and Beaufort will compete in a mixed doubles team format for the league title. Matches will consist of four courts with combined ratings of 5.5, 6.0, 6.5 and 7.0.
Players interested in joining a Chaplin Park team should send e-mail to Tim Ryan at; to get more information about joining the Bluffton team, call Bob Brown at 290-2833.