The International Blind Tennis Association (I.B.T.A.) with the help of the Sound Tennis Foundation has celebrated the third International Blind Tennis Tournament: Benidorm 2019.
This amazing tournament was held in Benidorm, a small city located in the east of Spain, belonging to the city of Alicante and bordering with the white coast, where you can enjoy the Mediterranean Sea beaches.
Between 9th June to 15th June we could all enjoy a unique esperience with the participation of 15 countries: Australia, Japan, Singapore, Pakistan, Israel, Poland, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, Great Britain, Ireland, South Africa, Mexico and Argentina.
This tournament has managed to bring together more than 80 world-class players and 150 persons including players, coaches, classifiers and assistants.
We started with the arrival of the different delegations between Saturday 8th June and Sunday 9th June.
On Sunday afternoon, we had the Opening Ceremony where we welcomed all the participating countries and we explained how the tournament would take place, the I.B.T.A. achievements since 2014, as well as, the Technical Manual Presentation. The Opening Ceremony was followed by a dinner and after that, we had Karaoke show where the participants could enjoy singing.
On Monday 10th and Tuesday 11th, the sight classification for all players took place.
On Wednesday morning, we started the official matches and the players could start to compete with the round robin groups. We had the visit of David Sanz, Spanish Tennis Federation representative and Miguel Crespo, representing I.T.F., who showed us the pleasant impression they had on the tournament and its organization, as well as the high blind tennis level.
On Thursday 13th June, the rest of the Round Robin groups were played.
On Friday 14th June, the quarter-finals, semifinals and 3rd/4th places of all the categories were held and we enjoyed some very interesting matches.
On Saturday 15th June, the finals took place and no spectator could say they were disappointed as the level was very high in all categories.
After finals, we had the exciting trophy ceremony and then we enjoy of the closing dinner where we could give the M.V.P. and Fair Play team trophies. This years the delegations voted by majority Hirofumi Ono as M.V.P. and Spanish Team as Fair Play Team.
Everybody who atended the tournament noted the wonderful atmosphere of competition and camaraderie between players, coaches and umpires. Also, fair play was the common denominator during the whole tournament.
On Sunday 16th June, it was time to say goodbye to this awesome tournament and all the delegations returned to their home countries.
With this tournament we have increased in a significant way the number of participants players and we have worked very hard to improve the quality of the tournament.