University of Alberta Unveils Game-Changing, Year-Round Tennis Facility


Marking a notable milestone in the progress of tennis in Edmonton, the University of Alberta has graced the sports community with the inception of a new, state-of-the-art, year-round tennis facility. The Saville Tennis Centre now proudly stands with six spanking new tennis courts, encased under an air-supported bubble situated in close proximity to the Saville Community Sports Centre.

“It’s been a journey of passion and patience,” shared Russ Sluchinski, the Tennis Program Lead at the prestigious University of Alberta. A fervent believer in the potential of the new facility, Sluchinski anticipates that this exemplary sporting offering will bolster the University’s standing for hosting premier tennis events while fostering local talent.

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With a glimmer of hope in his eye, he continued, “Imagine the unimaginable scope of opportunities it now presents for those who just yearned to partake in tennis. This unique facility, with no restrictive membership, significantly opens up participation. We expect these progressive changes to create a ripple of enthusiastic response and participation.”

During the dome season running from September to May, the centre notably offers a pay-and-play concept for public participation. Meanwhile, the approach switches to members-only outdoor courts during summer months. This crowning jewel has been realized courtesy of funding from renowned philanthropist Bruce Saville and the Tennis Canada Year-Round Community Tennis Courts Program.

According to Tennis Canada’s forecast, the new facility will serve a staggering 1.5 million players, contributing 595 hours of robust court time in Edmonton on a weekly basis.

Canadian doubles tennis champion and Olympic gold medalist, Daniel Nestor, who graced the opening ceremony with his presence, applauded the initiative stating, “The inception of facilities like these is a boon to the country. This facility stands out amongst the best I’ve seen, offering local players a plethora of opportunities.” Nestor further outlined the affordability factor that this facility will introduce, making tennis an achievable dream for many youngsters.

Subsequent to the construction of the Saville Centre, the count of year-round tennis courts at the University has seen a dramatic surge from eight to fourteen. Emma Rutherford, Captain of the Pandas Tennis Team at the University, expressed her excitement, “It’s certainly a game-changer. The increased capacity augments opportunities to practice, compete, and host more tournaments, not just for the varsity team, but for the entire Edmonton tennis community.”

At the illustrious grand opening, attendees were treated to a demonstration of skills by the eight-time Grand Slam doubles champion Nestor, proving inspirational to many. “Playing alongside a professional was an exhilarating experience,” shared Katie Juchymenko, a first-year Pandas player.

The goal of Tennis Canada over the next seven years is to emulate this success with the construction of 160 additional covered courts, a welcome addition to the existing tally of 750 covered courts across the nation.