Paralympian and six-time Grand Slam doubles champion Jordanne Whiley joined players at Riverside Tennis Club – as well as Bedford Borough Mayor Dave Hodgson – for a fun day of disability tennis on the clubs’ courts on Sunday.
More than 100 people visited Riverside to take part in a host of disability taster sessions which included deaf tennis, learning disability tennis, visual impairment tennis and wheelchair tennis.
Jordanne joined players on court and gave everyone an opportunity to play against her who wanted to take on the challenge.
Following that, Jordanne signed a handmade wooden oar for the Charity Oars Project who work on behalf of Thrombosis UK to raise awareness of the condition.
A Q&A session with Jordanne off court gave an incredible insight into her daily routines and the mindset of a champion, and this was followed by a demo match between Jordanne and the Riverside Tennis Club’s disability tennis manager, Richard Ball.
Despite a valiant effort from Richard, there was only ever going to be one outcome in this match and both players shook hands at 4-2 to Jordanne to save any further embarrassment for Richard on court.
Richard said: “We were absolutely delighted that Jordanne was able to take time out of her busy schedule to come to Riverside Tennis Club.
“The Charity Oars Project is an incredible story and we wish Paul Westerman from Charity Oars all the best as he continues to add names from sport and screen to the oars before they are auctioned off to raise money for such a good cause.
“The day provided a taster of what we provide at Riverside as part of our #nobarriers project which aims to deliver tennis to a wider range of people, irrespective of ability or disability.
“We’ve launched the programme for the Autumn Term 2015 and please get in touch with us if you’d like to find out more - we are dedicated to ensuring tennis is an inclusive sport which is accessible to all communities.”