The city of Uberlandia, Brazil, was the setting for the most recent international TAP (Tenis Adaptado de Pie or stand-up adaptive tennis) Championship, July 30-31. Twenty-eight athletes traveled from Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Portugal, Peru, and the United States to play.
Classifications in the TAP tournament are based on skill, not on pathology or medical diagnosis, and a one-set, round-robin format per match was applied on the first day of play with athletes then advancing to the quarterfinals. The semifinals and final were held on the second day. Javier Bespresvany from Argentina prevailed as the champion.
Jeff Bourns was the sole player from the United States to compete. “I didn’t play the way I wanted, but I gained a lot of experience for Houston,” he said.
Bourns, the first stand-up adaptive tennis player to serve on the United States Tennis Association (USTA) of Texas Adaptive Tennis Committee, is helping to organize the first Professional International Standing Adaptive Tennis Tournament, TAP Tour, to be held in this country. USTA Texas, the USTA Texas Tennis Education and Foundation (TTEF), and the TAP Foundation will be presenting the tournament, which is slated for December 9-11 at The Galleria Athletic & Tennis Club, Houston.
“I was very encouraged by some of the new players on tour, their skill levels,” Bourns said. “We are currently working on developing the category of play, so it makes me happy to see so many talented players. Currently in tennis there are five categories of play. Regular (able-bodied), blind, deaf, special Olympics, and wheelchair. We are working on creating number six-standing adaptive.”