G Tennis and Chris Marshall pick up the Communities and Parks accolade at LTA Tennis Awards
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An inspirational Surrey tennis coach has been crowned a national winner at the LTA Tennis Awards for his efforts in enabling children from all backgrounds to play tennis.
Chris Marshall, who coaches at G Tennis in Lambeth, has won the flagship Community & Parks Award for his work in making welcoming to all.
Throughout 2021, Marshall led youth sessions at Larkhall Park for over 400 people - many of the children from disadvantaged backgrounds - making the sport fun while teaching them the basics of the game.
Marshall was announced as the winner by Sports Minister Nigel Huddleston at a live-streamed awards ceremony presented by LTA President David Rawlinson and hosted by the LTA’s Head of Men’s Tennis, Leon Smith.
The LTA Tennis Awards are now in their seventh year and celebrate the achievements and contributions of outstanding tennis volunteers, coaches, officials, venues and players across the country.
Marshall was hand-picked as one of 17 national winners recognised at the awards ceremony on Thursday, which honoured individuals involved in tennis at grassroots, county, regional and national level.
Nominations were drawn from over 25,000 volunteers, nearly 5,000 coaches and 1,000 officials, 22,000 schools, nearly 3,000 clubs and over 9,000 LTA approved tournaments, with Marshall recognised for his tireless work in providing new opportunities to those who may not usually get them.
Alongside his normal coaching role, Marshall organised a holiday to the Chilterns for several of the children where they were able to play tennis and try activities such as horse riding, in what was a first ever holiday for some of the participants.
The quality and quantity of the nominations demonstrate outstanding work that has been done in tennis through the last year and David Rawlinson, LTA President, said: “The LTA Tennis Awards are a real celebration of the people that make our sport thrive.
“They acknowledge the achievements made by outstanding volunteers, coaches, officials, venues and players, who are all vital in helping us to grow the game.
“The outstanding contributions the nominees have made to the sport and to their communities has been tremendously uplifting and I would like to thank them for their fantastic work.”
Congratulations to all the finalists in the Communities and Parks Award category:
- Beacon Park Tennis (Staffordshire)
- Headway and Jo Dallas (Hampshire & Isle of Wight)
- Achieve Thrive Flourish and Stuart Long (Essex)
- G Tennis and Chris Marshall (Surrey)
- Musselburgh Tennis Club (Scotland)
- Newport Tennis Centre (Wales)
- Priory TC and Andy Perry (Cheshire)