Grass Roots Tennis Media Release #grt1701                 Written by : Dave Macleod                  Embargo : None              Date 17 January 2017

Constantia duo take aim at tennis world record

Cape Town - Cape Town tennis players Carlos Gomes and Wendy Thompson are aiming to break the Guinness World Record for the longest singles tennis match to raise funds to revamp tennis facilities in the Western Cape townships of Khayelitsha and Khayamundi.

The pair plan to get their bid, to set a new world record of 65 hours of unbroken tennis at the Constantia Tennis Club, underway on Friday 3 February, aiming to top the current record of 63 hours, 27 minutes and 40 seconds set by a German duo two years ago. If all goes according to plan they will set that new mark at dawn on Monday 6 February.

The bid has been sanctioned by the Guinness Book of Records, which will scrutinise every minute of their bid, allowing them five minutes per hour rest, which they plan to accumulate to allow them to catnap for 45 minutes every twelve hours.

"We are also allowed the usual ATP rules of time between matches and sets," said Gomes, a sales rep and the current chairperson of the Constantia Tennis Club that will host the record attempt.

He said that the idea came about after he and Wendy Thompson went to Khayelitsha to play a league tennis fixture.

"The facilities are really poor, to the point that many clubs actually forfeit their matches if they are drawn to play in Khayelitsha," said Gomes.

"We played our match - and lost actually!" he added. "However, we had our best ever tennis experience there. There was such enthusiasm for the game and the Khayelitsha members were super friendly and hospitable."

The pair immediately started looking into ways to raise the funds needed to refurbish the courts, install partition fencing between the courts, repair the broken fencing and build a clubhouse at the Khayelitsha facility.

Through an NGO called Kingdom DNA they found out about a similar facility at Khayamundi in Stellenbosch that was in desperate need of repair, and they set their sights on raising the cash required by challenging for the arduous Guinness World Record.

The pair, both in their 40s, have been training intensively for the challenge, and completed a 24 hour trial that exposed them to some of the rigours they can expect from their planned 65 hours of tennis.

"The trial went well," said Thompson. "I just have to get Carlos to calm down at times because he is such a competitive tennis player that he can get carried away! And you don't want that to happen when you are trying to conserve energy."

They are canvassing personal and corporate sponsors to back them by the hour during their challenge, while also seeking support from the tennis industry and construction firms that might be willing to assist with the refurbishment and repairs at the courts in Khayelitsha and Khayamundi.

The 65 Hour Challenge to break the Guinness World Record for the longest singles tennis match gets under way at the Constantia Tennis Club at 17h00 on Friday 3 February, and intends to finish at 10am on Monday 6 February 2017.

More information can be found at www.grassrootstennis.co.za

To interview, please contact:
Carlos Gomes on 079 512 1256

ENDS

Photo Caption Photographer Click to download the hi-res pic

Grass Roots Tennis Logo - JPeg

 

Cape Town league tennis players Wendy Thompson (left) and Carlos Gomes plan to set a new Guinness World Record by playing tennis for 65 hours to raise funds to refurbish tennis facilities in the townships of Khayelitsha and Khayamundi. Cameron Thompson/
Gameplan Media

Cape Town league tennis players Wendy Thompson (left) and Carlos Gomes practice on a court in Khayelitsha for their Guinness World Record attempt by playing tennis for 65 hours to raise funds to refurbish tennis facilities in the townships of Khayelitsha and Khayamundi. Cameron Thompson/
Gameplan Media

Conditions of usage of photographs: All photographs supplied and hyperlinked herewith may be used free of charge, with full credit to the photographer and agency as provided. The photographs may not be modified or retouched in any way, but may be cropped to suit the layout requirements of the publications. The photographs provided may be used exclusively for editorial purposes, and may be reprinted in any newspaper, magazine, television programme or on any website. These photographs may not be used for any commercial or promotional purpose, including but not limited to posters, advertisements, commercials, promotional email correspondence, point-of-sale material or any retail promotion. Should such usage be desired, please contact us at the details below.
Is this of no value to you?
This media release is intended for use by media professionals covering this specific activity or sport. Should this release not be relevant you, please advise us immediately and we will be glad to remove your name from this particular database. It would be useful to us if you could advise us which subjects you would like to continue receiving releases on.
For any further information, or if you cannot access the images, please contact:
Gameplan Media
(031) 764 3017