As we recently discussed in our article about the UK’s number one female player coaching in the community, the sport is certainly catching on over in the United Kingdom. Scotland is the latest country to announce a new national competition.
Scot Judy Murray, mother of tennis grand-slam winner Andy, is a recent convert to the sport of pickleball, after trying it out while visiting South Carolina.
Judy commented, “The sport has exploded in America. I can see the same thing happening here because it’s so much more accessible than any other sport. As an older tennis player, I love the fact it’s on a smaller court, and it’s less frenetic. All the skills are easily adapted so it doesn’t need endless coaching.”
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“People can pick it up really quickly, regardless of their age or ability,” said Elliot. “The fun of sport is competing and people can play a game straight away. I loved it from the get-go and I want more Scots to try it.
“It can be played on a badminton court – which every school and community center across the country has. Its growth is inevitable, and I reckon it’s only a matter of time before it becomes an Olympic and Paralympic sport.
“I hope sportscotland acts quickly and supports the growth of this fun, sociable, accessible, and very doable sport.”
Scottish Nationals And Masters
Corrina Whittaker and Lucy Elliott, who previously competed in table tennis at the Commonwealth Games, are aiming to make history by becoming Scotland’s inaugural pickleball champions at the upcoming Scottish Nationals and Masters. The prestigious tournament will take place in Milngavie, East Dunbartonshire, from June 2 to 4.
Notably, Lucy Elliott had the honor of representing Scotland at the Birmingham Games in the previous year. Despite her ongoing battle with type one diabetes, she describes pickleball as standing out as one of the most inclusive and easily accessible sports for her.
Lucy said: “I want to lead the way and help take the sport to more people because it’s such a wonderful sport for any age or ability. It will be a great event with everyone from all over Scotland coming together to play in this. Old habits die hard – I’m ambitious and competitive, and ultimately I want to win.
“Sport is great for anyone’s physical and mental health, and pickleball is undoubtedly one of the most accessible sports, so I want more people to play. Hopefully, we can raise the profile, push the sport forward, and maybe one day there will be a possibility of representing Great Britain at the Olympics.”
The chair of Pickleball Scotland Mhairi Adam added: “I’ve never seen a sport become this popular, this quickly. It’s unprecedented. We hope that the event will further raise the profile of pickleball and encourage more people to take up the sport – we’re ambitious and we believe in the sport.
“The response to the championships and the enthusiasm shown by players from all over Scotland and beyond has been sensational. The age range goes from eight to 80 and we’re excited to see a number of wheelchair athletes compete.
“With the increasing popularity of pickleball and the success of these championships, it is clear that this inclusive, fun and friendly sport has a very bright future in Scotland.”
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