Top Padel Tennis Competition held at Harbor Club Chelsea

Harbor Club Chelsea welcomed the best padel players in the country who took part in the first Home of Padel Pro tournament on the May 1 bank holiday.

The knockout competition, hosted by UK captain John Leach, involved eight doubles battling it out to be crowned champions and win a trophy and prize money.

HOP Pro Padel competition arrives in South West London

South West London’s Chris Salisbury claimed victory alongside partner Rafa Vega, beating Britain’s number 1 Jorge Martinez and Alfonso Patacho in the final.

Salisbury is the brother of tennis doubles star Joe Salisbury, who is currently the United States Doubles Champion alongside Rajeev Ram.

HOP Pro Champions Salisbury and Vega Image Credit: John Leach

What is padel?

Padel is a fast and fun version of tennis. It is played mainly in doubles in an enclosed court about one-third the size of a normal tennis court.

Gambling is one of the fastest growing sports in Europe, with Spain being the most dominant force.

Four of the top ten male players are Spanish.

What are the rules?

The rules are broadly similar to tennis, but the players serve under the arms and the walls are part of the game.

It is played with a padel that has no strings instead of a racket.

These tennis tweaks make it an action game with lots of smashes, volleys and long rallies.

Where is he from ?

The sport originated in Mexico in 1969 and then spread across Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula.

How popular is it?

Interest over time in tennis, padel, squash and badminton in the UK Data credit: Google Trends

Padel is a growing sport in the UK, but its popularity still lags behind other racket sports.

Data shows interest over time in tennis, padel, badminton and squash and it is clear that tennis is by far the most popular of these sports.

Padel is the least popular while squash is slightly more popular than badminton, although the gap between the two is narrowing.

For comparison, the data below shows interest over time in padel and tennis in Spain where both are popular.

Interest over time for tennis and padel in Spain Data credit: Google Trends

From 2004 to the present day, the two sports have continued to become the most popular.

There are around six million active padel players in Spain, compared to 89,000 in the UK.

Who dominates the sport?

At the elite level, Spain are the most dominant force.

The country has the highest number of players in the top 100 of the World Padel Tour ranking for men and women with 73 and 72 respectively.

Argentina has the second highest number of players in the top 100 for the men’s match and Italy has the second highest number for the women’s match.

padel world tour: Number of Top 100 Padel players (men) by country Data as of 05/10/2022

Only eight countries are represented in the ranking for men’s padel and nine are represented for women’s padel.

The UK has no male or female player in the top 100.

padel world tour: Number of Top 100 Padel players (women) by country Data as of 05/10/2022

Feature image credit: John Leach

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