Also known as paddle tennis, platform tennis is a racquet game with elements of tennis and ping pong.
It’s played on what resembles a small tennis-like court and has similar rules to lawn tennis. Platform tennis paddles also share a striking resemblance with ping pong racquets.
But even with these similarities, platform tennis is an independent game. In the United States, it’s funded and governed by the American Platform Tennis Association (APTA).
APTA is a non-profit organization that promotes the growth of the sport, ensures sportsmanship, and oversees tournaments. It also rewards individuals who have made significant contributions to the game by inducting them into the Platform Tennis Hall of Fame.
To get into the Hall of Fame as a player, you need to take part and excel in multiple tournaments and championships. If you are confident enough, here are five platform tennis tournaments to try.
Major Platform Tennis Tournaments in the U.S.
1. The President’s Cup
The President’s Cup was founded in 1978 and served as one of the biggest national competitions for amateur players.
Before it was started, platform tennis was quickly losing its popularity as more and more skilled players turned to other more lucrative racquet games like tennis and ping pong.
Initially, most of the players who took part in platform tennis competitions did it for fun and sportsmanship. When things got all serious and professional, some players downed their paddles. This forced regulatory bodies to create separate competitions for non-professionals at regional levels. The winners in each region would book their place in the President’s Cup.
Although it began as a competition for players who didn’t fancy platform tennis rankings, the President’s Cup has grown into a very competitive tournament.
This year’s tournament was held in Chicago from 9th to 11th March. The next event will be held from 8th to 10th March 2019 in Pittsburg.
2. APTA National League Championships
Until 2016, thousands of platform tennis league players in the U.S. lacked an exciting way to end their seasons.
Although the league competitions were fun, they lacked the thrill and excitement of national events. For this reason, the APTA National League Championships was created. This tournament was a great way for league players to end the season and garner more points.
The first National League Championships was held in Chicago in April 2016. Although the tournament was open to all players, a rating system was used to match competitors based on the skill levels.
The 2018 Men and Women APTA National League Championships will be held in Chicago from April 14th to 15th. To be eligible to participate, you should have an APTA league membership and your national rating should be between 3.5 and 5.5. The tournament is currently open to leagues and divisions in U.S. and Canada only.
3. Eastern Singles Men’s and Women’s National Ranking Tournament (NRT)
The Eastern Singles is the only singles tournament with an APTA national ranking in North America.
The tournament is known for its diverse appeal, with players of all ages gracing the event – usually between 14 to 60 years. It also features both nationally ranked professionals and locally skilled players.
This unique variety of players makes the Eastern Singles one of the most entertaining platform tennis tournaments in the country.
4. APTA Grand Prix Series
The Grand Prix series is platform tennis’ equivalent of the Grand Slam in tennis and the Four Majors in golf. In this tournament, the players’ standings are updated and released after every match. It’s the only tournament where points are guaranteed to all participating teams.
Points are awarded according to the final results of the event and calculated the same way as any NRT tournament. The men’s team with the highest number of points receive the Men’s Blanchard Cup, while the best women’s team is awarded the Women’s Childress Cup.
5. Sue Watson Women’s Tournament
This is a women’s tournament where the number of teams is limited to 64. Registration is awarded on first come first come basis. Teams are guaranteed at least two matches where ad scoring is not allowed.
The tournament has been around for a few decades, and is open to females in Series 5 and below. The 2018 tournament begins on April 10th.
Excelling in Platform Tennis Tournament Games
For best results in tournaments, you not only need to master your paddle wizardry but also your mental strength. It’s normal to feel tensed and a little bit scared, but staying confident and relaxed will go a long way in giving you an upper hand in competitions. In addition, study your opponents’ tactics and find a loophole.
Win or lose, there’s no better way to improve your game than participating in various platform tennis tournaments. Make sure you have fun!