St. George’s Open Tennis Tournament Kicks Off This Weekend

You’ve heard of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, but did you know there’s a hotbed for tennis in Nova Scotia? Clear your schedule because that talent will be on display this weekend at St. George’s Tennis Club.

For those who don’t know, St. George’s Tennis Club dates to 1885 and had been a Dartmouth icon ever since. Nestled in the heart of Downtown Dartmouth, the tennis club has been a sport and cultural institution for the province for over 100 years. So much so that East Coast musician Matt Mays immortalized the club in a song. Originally a grass-court club, they’ve had clay courts and now Har-Tru courts. These are synthetic clay surface which is easier on joints than other surfaces while providing a great surface for kids to learn on.

Starting Friday, August 11th, spectators can watch Nova Scotia’s best compete in St. George’s Open Tournament. Tennis Nova Scotia has ranked the players and released the schedule. You can follow the tournament on Twitter here.

Because it’s an open tournament, the club will welcome players of all ages and abilities. The tournament is a Tennis Nova Scotia sanctioned event which means they supply the umpires. If a player contests a call, the umpire will make the final decision with or without the support of the volunteer staff, depending on the situation. This will allow players to focus solely on the match at hand, a welcomed luxury for the amateur players.

Something to keep in mind as you head to St. George’s on the weekend is parking. It can pose a challenge to those who can’t find a spot on the street proper. The charm of the tall trees, quietness, and care of the homes in the quaint neighborhood offsets this minor inconvenience though. Options for parking include street parking on neighboring streets, metered parking on Kings Wharf Place or a gated parkade on Portland Street.

And if you’re a tennis newbie heading to watch your first tourney, we have you covered with four quick tips to make sure you make the most of the day.

  • What to wear — Tennis traditionally was played in white formal long-sleeve button ups. Since it’s no longer 1912, you’ll get by in a crisp white tee or polo.
  • How to Act — when you’re sitting court side, remember to keep your phone on silent, eat your snacks quietly, and talk between rallies. Tennis etiquette mimics that of golf, where athletes prefer silence.
  • What’s going on? — It goes game, set, match. To win a set, the player must win the majority games and to win a match, the player must win the majority of sets. This is a gross simplification of the rules but understanding them will make you sound smart with your fellow spectators.
    Get the low-down on the terminology —
  • Love means zero. Fun fact: it’s derived from the French word ’l’ouef’ because a zero looks like an egg.
    Ace is when a serve can’t be returned (or touched) by an opponent.
    Deuce means the score is 40–40. A player must win two consecutive points to win the game.