Tennis Blog

UBC Recreation Program Suspension/Cancellations for March 14-29 Due to COVID-19 Concerns

Dear members, students, faculty, staff, and community;

Due to the current conditions with COVID-19, UBC Recreation and UBC Camps are suspending programs beginning March 14 through March 29. While the Public Health Agency of Canada continues to assess the risk as low for Canada, we seek to minimize transmission in the community by limiting close contact with others at this time.  In addition, in accordance with a recommendation from Provincial Medical Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, the BC Centre for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Vancouver Coastal Health, the university is cancelling all on-campus and off-campus events with more than 250 people.

Programs suspended or cancelled are:

  • Storm the Wall & Storm the Wall Community Festival
  • All spring break camps from March 16-20 and March 23-27 (are all cancelled)
  • Aquatic lessons, certifications, & classes
  • Baseball lessons & programs
  • Fitness & classes – registered classes & membership-based classes (yoga & pilates, spin, boot camps, etc.)
  • Ice – skating & hockey lessons, Thunderbird Adult Hockey League
  • Intramural programs – league sports, Storm the Wall, Hall of Fame
  • Rowing – community rowing programs & lessons
  • Tennis – lessons & programs

Additionally, there will be some adjustments for access to fitness centres, pool, and gymnasiums. We understand that fitness and sports provide a much-needed outlet during stressful times like this which is why our recreational and fitness facilities remain open while providing a safe, healthy environment. The following facilities will be available for drop-in activities with adjustments to manage possible risks:

  • Aquatics Centre (steam room & sauna closed)
  • ARC & BirdCoop Fitness Centres (and associated fitness studios)
  • Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre for public skating & stick & puck
  • SRC drop-in sports (volleyball, basketball, badminton)

UBC Recreation will continue to monitor the situation and adjust programs and facility access based on risks. In the meantime, members and guests will be informed of updates as soon as they become available.

For updates on the status of all recreation programming and activities please visit here.

For information on how UBC continues to monitor the development of the situation, including resources, click here.

We thank everyone for their participation and support of UBC Recreation. We appreciate your understanding and look forward to seeing you on a future visit.

UBC Recreation

Tennis Talk – March 2020

Seventeen-year-old Canadian Leylah Annie Fernandez has officially made her presence known on the international tennis stage.

At the 2020 Australian Open, Fernandez cruised through the qualifying round without dropping a set to become Canada’s lone representative in the women’s singles draw.

Since then, Fernandez defeated then world No. 5 Belinda Bencic at a Fed Cup qualifier, reaching her first WTA final in Acapulco (losing in three sets to world No. 49 Heather Watson), and stunned former world No. 3 and 2017 US Open Champion Sloane Stephens to reach the quarterfinals in Monterrey last week.

We also can’t forget her doubles title last summer in Gatineau with our very own Rebecca Marino!

The Montreal teenager is now the second-highest ranked Canadian woman at a career-high No. 118, behind the injured No. 6 Bianca Andreescu, and we can’t wait to cheer on another Canadian making waves in the tennis world.

By Aneesa Heatherington

Tennis Talk – February 2020

The UBC Tennis Centre is happy to announce our new Volunteer Coordinator, Tehya Romeo. Romeo will bring valuable experience and will help provide volunteer opportunities to aspiring coaches and tennis enthusiasts alike.

Romeo played at the UBC Tennis Centre herself as a junior, and worked her way up our development system through high school before starting to volunteer. Through volunteering at the Centre, she eventually became a certified instructor and is now a valued member of the team.

“The most rewarding aspect of volunteering for me was to build relationships with the kids,” said Romeo. “When I got hired as a coach a year after volunteering, I was able to watch the same kids grow and develop through our programs so quickly – while giving back to the community I grew up in.”

UBC Tennis Centre volunteers assist in weekly youth programs, camps and special events – among other opportunities. Volunteers do not need to be certified instructors, however a basic knowledge of tennis is required. The volunteer program is ideal for high school or university students looking to start their career in tennis and gain valuable experience while working alongside our world-class coaching team.

“To graduate high school you do need to meet a minimum requirement of volunteer hours,” said Romeo. “For me it was easy to come in a few times a week and be in an active environment that I already enjoyed. It really was the best of both worlds.”

Romeo also shared a bit of insight on what an effective volunteer can bring to the table.

“We’re looking for someone who is proactive and interactive with the coaches and students – someone who brings a positive attitude to the court, encourages good sportsmanship and helps foster a fun tennis experience for everyone.”

For more information about volunteer opportunities, and how to apply, click here.

By Aneesa Heatherington

Facility Closure | January 15

Updated: January 15, 2020 at 9:30AM

Please note that the UBC Tennis Centre will be CLOSED today, January 15th, for the entire day due to inclement weather conditions on campus and in Vancouver.

All court bookings, private lessons, and programs are effectively cancelled for the entire day.


Please note that while the facility is closed, we are unable to respond to any emails, return any voicemails and answer any calls. Any emails or voicemails will be returned when the facility reopens.

Tennis Talk – January 2020

The UBC Tennis Centre is thrilled to announce Pete Grimsey as the new High Performance Director!

Born and raised in Auckland, New Zealand, Grimsey played at the national level as a junior before moving to the U.S. to compete in NCAA Division II tennis at Rockhurst University in Kansas City, Missouri. Grimsey reached a career high national singles ranking of #27 and began his coaching career in Kansas City and New York.

For the past 11 years, Grimsey worked at Hollyburn Country Club developing the U10-U18 High Performance Program, which produced some of BC’s top junior players, and has assisted with player selection and training for Tennis BC Provincial Training Camps for over five years.

Grimsey has traveled several times with the top U16 provincial players to compete at Canadian Nationals, and has been involved with tours for Tennis BC including the “Little Mo” in California and a Tennis Canada U12 National Camp in Montreal.

Now as the High Performance Director at the UBC Tennis Centre, Grimsey is ready to bring his expertise to the Centre and put his mark on the tennis community.

“I would like to evaluate and identify areas of improvement, then look to build the players’ interest for the sport”, says Grimsey. “By creating a hardworking and positive training environment, I’d love to see more UBC juniors competing in local tournaments and climbing the provincial rankings to qualify for Selection Series and National events.”

The New Zealand native believes in a strong emphasis on work ethic, sportsmanship, respect for others and teamwork.

“I’ve been so fortunate to play this great sport and learn from so many different types of coaches”, says Grimsey. “I hope to pass on this knowledge to as many players as possible. I believe in setting clear standards and goals for players, then guiding and motivating them to reach their aspirations.”

Join us in welcoming Pete – and make sure to say “Hi!” when you see him around the Centre!

By Aneesa Heatherington

Tennis Talk – December 2019

History was made once again for Canadian tennis in 2019, but this time a new bar was set by our men’s team. Canada’s Davis Cup squad fell to Rafael Nadal and the Spanish team in the Davis Cup Final – the furthest our country has gone in the international competition – with a depleted roster.

Vancouver’s own Vasek Pospisil and teammate Denis Shapovalov carried our nation to new heights in a grueling new format, reaching the finals for the first time in history in unprecedented fashion. The two were exhausted. An injury kept Felix Auger-Aliassime and Milos Raonic out of action, so Pospisil and Shapovalov averaged two matches a day to take down the United States, Australia, Russia and Italy all by themselves. What a week!

In other news, Bianca Andreescu added another accomplishment to her own historic year by unanimously winning the 2019 Lou Marsh Trophy as Canada’s athlete of the year. Andreescu is the first tennis player to earn the award, as voted on by a panel of sports journalists from across the country. Congratulations Bianca!

We can’t wait to see what’s in store for Canadian tennis in 2020!

By Aneesa Heatherington

Tennis Talk – November 2019

While the WTA and ATP are winding down an eventful season, there is still plenty of Canadian tennis news on our radar! Bianca Andreescu finished at No. 5 in the world rankings after retiring from the WTA Finals and concluding what was a legendary year for the young Grand Slam champion. Andreescu’s coach, Sylvain Bruneau, is confident the powerful phenom will be healthy and ready to return to action come January.

On the men’s side, Denis Shapovalov had an impressive run at the Paris Masters that ended in a finals loss to Novak Djokovic and he has now equaled his career-high ranking of No. 15 in the ATP. Felix Auger-Aliassime finished at No. 21 as the ATP Finals in London continue among the top eight players.

In Davis Cup action, Milos Raonic withdrew from Team Canada with a back injury prior to the November 18th start date. Vancouver’s Vasek Pospisil will join Brayden Schnur, Shapovalov and Auger-Aliassime as Canada battles Italy and the USA in Group F of the David Cup Finals in Madrid.

By Aneesa Heatherington

Tennis Talk – October 2019

Canadian phenom Bianca Andreescu’s impressive 17-match win streak unfortunately came to an end this month against a formidable foe.

After a legendary run to the 2019 US Open singles title this summer, Andreescu fell to the 21 year-old Naomi Osaka in the quarterfinals at the China Open. It was the match tennis fans across the globe were waiting to see, and in the end the former world No. 1 (and 2018 US Open champ) took down the Canadian teen in three tightly contested sets.

It was Andreescu’s first loss to a top-10 opponent in nine matches, and she will look to finish the season strong at the WTA Finals beginning on October 27. We can’t wait to see both Osaka and Andreescu continue to move the needle in women’s tennis and inspire the next generation of players across the tennis world.

By Aneesa Heatherington

Tennis Talk – September 2019

The first Canadian Grand Slam singles champion. The first born in the 2000’s to win a major. The highest ranking for a Canadian woman in singles. She’s all those things and so much more. She the North.

Bianca Andreescu made history on September 7th, 2019 when she defeated one of the greatest athletes of all time, Serena Williams. Andreescu played on the biggest stage in tennis and won the US Open Championship in straight sets over Williams. Not only did she make Canadian history, she made the entire world take notice of what our country has to offer and what potential lies ahead for those the nineteen-year-old inspired in her ascent to the top. Andreescu’s phenomenal season culminated in a moment that captured a nation – one that will have you saying “Where were you when it happened?” for years to come. Thank you Bianca.


By Aneesa Heatherington

Tennis Talk – August 2019

This year’s Rogers Cup presented a pair of all-Canadian showdowns in a highly anticipated first round of action for both men and women competing in Montreal and Toronto.

In his first Rogers Cup appearance, Felix Auger-Aliassime bested Vancouver’s Vasek Pospisil on the men’s side – while Bianca Andreescu returned from injury to defeat Genie Bouchard in a three-set thriller. Auger-Aliassime advanced to face fellow Canadian Milos Raonic, but their battle was cut short as Raonic’s injury woes forced him to retire after the second set. Andreescu followed up her victory over Bouchard with another gutty three-set win over Daria Kasatkina.

At just nineteen years of age, both Andreescu and Auger-Aliassime are certainly on the rise in their young careers and have done the nation proud as the last woman and man standing in Canada’s premiere tennis tournament. The tennis teens have put on a show that we can’t wait to watch for years to come.

By Aneesa Heatherington