About 20 promising tennis prospects come to the North Shore Winter Club each week to train and train, but space and hours are limited.
“We rent courts from members here and operate on two courts most of the time, which is pretty tricky,” said Oded Jacob, manager of Tennis Canada’s national junior training program.
Unlike his eastern counterparts in Toronto and Montreal, he said British Columbia had no “playing field” or base.
“It’s a growing sport and it deserves to be at the forefront,” he said.
Children aged 10 to 15, selected for their promise to shine in sport, must give up their lunch and school hours to train.
“I have to be late every time, that’s why I come here.” “I try to come here a few times a week but I just can’t make it the full length, which is sad and I have to adjust to it,” said Gary Jiang, 14-year-old student-athlete.
“Accessibility is quite difficult because there aren’t a lot of fields and there are so many really good players who don’t have a lot of space to play,” added 11-year-old student-athlete Clara Vicol. .
The province said Tennis BC is proposing to build new facilities in Burnaby and is encouraged to develop a budget for it.
In a statement, the Ministry of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport said: “We are aware of Tennis Canada’s proposal to build a new tennis and racquet sports facility, in partnership with Tennis BC and the city of Burnaby, which would be home to British Columbia’s national junior training program. The minister met with Tennis Canada to discuss this project.
“Tennis Canada was encouraged to establish a business case and develop a budget so that the province could assess the viability of public investment for the project. They were also encouraged to apply for various federal and provincial infrastructure programs and to develop partnerships with private companies and corporate donors to obtain funding. We look forward to reviewing the business case once completed,” the statement continued.
“Our passion and love for sport has overcome many of these challenges, but as the world progresses, we must also progress because to be at the forefront of development we will need every means possible,” said Jacob . .
With the sport’s popularity growing, the push for a home field in the west continues.
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