Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Donald Young: A Rising Tennis Star Gives Back

This past summer, two rising African American tennis players competed against each other in the U.S. Open at the legendary Arthur Ashe stadium. One was James Blake, the #1 ATP player from the U.S., and the other was Donald Young, a 19-year old tennis player from Atlanta who like the late tennis legend Arthur Ashe, is committed to giving back to his community.

Fresh off his exciting stretch at the U.S. Open, Young is hosting ‘The Sunset Showtime”, a charitable event benefiting the Atlanta Youth Tennis Foundation and the Tennis in Motion Academy to be held September 10, 2008 at the Georgia Tech Tennis Center. The Tennis in Motion Academy was started by the Young family to teach children the values in playing tennis and help aspiring kids have meaningful experience with the sport as taught by the entire Young family: father, mother and son. He also gives back to the community by participating in tennis clinics such as USTA, Pilot Pen and First Serve, which uses tennis to empower youth with positive values and experiences.

Donald Young, Jr. was born July 23, 1989 to Donald Sr. and Illona Young in the South Side of Chicago. He began playing professional tennis in 2004 and a year later was the youngest year-end world tennis player in the ITF junior rankings. He is a rising African-American tennis player and the youngest player in the ATP Top 100. His major career achievements include: winner of the Junior Australian Open in 2005, Junior Wimbledon in 2007, two-time winner of the USTA Junior Boys Hardcourt Championships in Kalamazoo (2005 and 2006), winner of the ATP Challenger event in Aptos, California (2007), and an ITF Futures event in Little Rock, Arkansas (2007). In these photos, Young is at the Legg Mason Tournament on August 11, 2008, where he defeated Luis Horna.

The Sunset Showtime charity event will feature a special fundraiser, movie screening and tennis exhibition with John Isner, the 2007 NCAA Singles finalist and former University of Georgia All-American. The movie screening will be a first time showing of the documentary “Unstrung”, produced by ESPN that features Young and highlights the unique and exciting U.S. Hardcourts Championship.

"I’m really excited about the "Unstrung" movie. I have gained lots of valuable experience from playing with some of the best players in the sport and I'm glad to share that in this movie," said Young. "My parents and I started Tennis in Motion to try and help kids find strength and power through tennis. We hope to give back to aspiring kids in the Atlanta community and nationwide."

Event tickets are $100. For more information on this event, please call 239-593-3900.

Photo credit: John De Fritas
For more information on Donald Young visit http://www.octagon.com/.
Source: Axis Agency
{Thanks Ayona}