TA Press Release, July 21, 2018
Former Australian tennis player Sam Groth travelled to the Top End to officially open the state-of-the-art Darwin International Tennis Centre on Saturday alongside NT Minister for Tourism and Culture Lauren Moss, Tennis Australia Chief Operations Officer Tom Larner, Tennis NT President David de Silva AM and Tennis NT CEO Sam Gibson.
The official opening coincided with an Open Day which saw more than 350 kids and adults visit the brand new venue to participate in an autograph and tennis session with Sam Groth, free tennis programs and many other activities such as ANZ Tennis Hot Shots and Fitbit Cardio Tennis demonstrations.
Construction for the $16.7 million project commenced in May 2017 with Halikos taking on the 220 employee project after collaborative funding of over $16 million from the Northern Territory Government, and additional funding from Tennis Australia and Tennis NT. The facility was officially completed last month with the court surfacing and landscaping being the last stages.
Northern Territory Minister for Tourism and Culture Lauren Moss believes the new facilities provide the NT with more opportunities to host large-scale events.
“The new Darwin International Tennis Centre looks absolutely amazing and it was an honour to officially declare it open today while inviting the community to experience it for themselves,” said Ms Moss.
“We can’t wait to see centre court full of spectators in the future with plans underway to secure more national and international tennis events to help boost tourism and stimulate the local economy.
“We know sporting events are a major trigger for attracting visitors to the Territory, which is why we have invested $103 million in our turbocharging Tourism initiatives, which includes more money for tourism marketing and event promotion to interstate and overseas holiday makers.
“Our events bring in millions of dollars to the local economy with visiting athletes, sports fans spending money on accommodation, shopping, meals, hospitality and tours while they’re here.”
Former world No.53 Sam Groth was on-site to help with the official launch and boost the open day experience for fans.
“It’s great to be back here in Darwin and to be able to support the official opening of this amazing venue. I have fond memories of playing Davis Cup here in 2015 and remember the fans up here were amazing.
“It’s great to be able to see the transition of the facility up here, I remember playing on a purpose built court in a parking lot just near here. Nothing as good as this. It really does set Darwin up as a place to hold more events like Davis and Fed Cup.”
Tennis Australia Chief Operations Officer Tom Larner believes new facilities are vital for future growth in the sport.
“A world-class facility like the Darwin International Tennis Centre will bring major tennis events and tournaments to the NT. Situated so closely to Asia, Darwin is a major gateway to the Asia-Pacific region and will attract more players from there,” Larner said.
Tennis NT CEO Sam Gibson was excited to unveil the new facility to the public.
“The Darwin International Tennis Centre project has been a major collaborative effort between the NT Government, Tennis NT and Tennis Australia and I’d like to thank everyone involved.
“I am honoured to be able to open this state-of-the-art facility today and hope that it opens many doors to develop tennis as a whole in the region through grassroots participation, providing a hub for future stars and a becoming a platform to host global tennis events.
“Having a venue of this standard also opens multitude of opportunities for the NT in securing future national, Asia-Pacific and international events right here in Darwin.”
Darwin International Tennis Centre fast facts
· The Darwin International Tennis Centre was a $16.7 million project with more than $16 million pledged by the NT Government
· Construction started for the project in May 2017 and completed in May 2018
· The new Darwin International Tennis Centre meets International Tennis Federation (ITF) standards and includes 16 ITF standard Plexipave hardcourts including an undercover show court with seating for 500 and five purpose-built ANZ Tennis Hot Shots Courts
· The venue is being managed by Tennis Australia’s ‘Tennis World’ who will provide coaches and run programs
· Additional facilities include: the Tennis NT office, a clubhouse, office accommodation, conference rooms, a café and a large public parking space
· The new centre has already hosted four national tournaments and two international tournaments
· The Darwin International Tennis Centre Open Day took place on Saturday 21 July from 8:30am to 1:30pm.