By Sharon Aron Baron
The competition at The United States Tennis Association (USTA) Singles National Tennis Championships just got served.
This month, Rob Nickels, City of Parkland Tennis Director, traveled to San Diego, where he won the Over 40 NTRP 4.5 national tennis title, fulfilling a lifelong dream.
Parkland Mayor Rich Walker congratulated Nickels and said the city is incredibly lucky to have him as the tennis pro.
“Rob is a tremendous teacher of the game, which is invaluable to our residents. Teaching is just one component of Rob’s impressive skill set. We could not be prouder of Rob’s latest accomplishment on the court – winning a national championship.”
Nickels’ journey to the Over 40, NTRP 4.5 National Tennis Title began back last October, after winning the regional championships in Naples, then qualifying for the Florida state championships in Orlando, where, in January, he won the Florida state title, becoming the number one ranked player in Florida.
In San Diego, Nickels entered the tournament as the ninth-ranked player in the U.S. in his division, winning six matches in three days, beating the #1, #5, and #6 ranked players in the U.S. to claim the national title.
“Competing against all the other state champions at the tournament in San Diego was extremely tough,” said Nickels. “I love competing and was so happy that I could play the best tennis of my life.”
A resident of Parkland Golf & Country Club, he was accompanied by his wife, Kathy, his two boys, Mateo, 12, Ethan, 10, his mother, who traveled from England, and his mother and father-in-law.
“It was great having my whole family there supporting me. Seeing my wife’s and my two son’s faces after winning the final point in the championship match is something I’ve never felt on a tennis court before.” Rob said
Nickels looks forward to his upcoming summer camp at Parkland Tennis Center.
“It’s a very popular summer camp with daily pro tennis instruction, a giant waterslide, field games, and indoor activities. We offer a safe, happy, positive environment for everyone. We want to be a place where you feel comfortable entrusting our team to engage your children in learning this wonderful sport of tennis.”
His academy and team of seven coaches provide afternoon classes for juniors and adult clinics and train the numerous adult league teams that call Parkland Tennis Center home.
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- Sharon Aron Baron is a Parkland resident and editor of Talk Media. She has been covering Parkland news since 2012. Parkland Talk was created to provide News, Views, and Entertainment for the residents of Parkland.
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