Coach Murphy Jensen Visits
Mid-Atlantic Tennis Community
Coach Murphy Jensen smiles for the cameras with Reston Tennis Association members.
Reigning World TeamTennis Coach of the Year Murphy Jensen couldn't wait until July to get reacquainted with hundreds of the Washington Kastles' most loyal fans.
This past weekend, the charismatic Kastles coach led an exclusive tennis clinic for season ticket holders, mingled with celebrities at The White House Correspondents' Brunch, and exchanged strokes with players at nine Mid-Atlantic tennis clubs.
The first stop on Murphy's itinerary was George Washington University for an afternoon clinic available only to Kastles' season ticket holders as part of their VIP benefits package.
Each of the attendees got a chance to play doubles with a Grand Slam champion before enjoying complimentary food and beverages with the fourth-year Kastles' coach.
On Saturday and Sunday, Murphy made the rounds at area clubs that are active members of the Kastles' Ambassador program.
The former world No. 17 was especially impressed with junior players from the Four Star Tennis Academy and Mount Vernon Athletic Club, who were anything but intimidated as they battered balls from the baseline and showed great touch at the net.
At Westleigh Recreation, teaching pro Ed Tripp pitted adults against juniors in a drill that saw Murphy, a big kid at heart, align with the youngsters to earn an unlikely victory.
Besides teaming with kids at Westleigh, Murphy did a bit of teaching during a pow-wow with juniors at The Tennis Center at College Park. He was joined at TCCP by Kastles' owner Mark Ein and rock star Gavin Rossdale, a personal friend of Jensen and Ein's.
Kastles' Coach Murphy Jensen and the talented juniors of Mount Vernon Athletic Club.
During his visit at Regency Sport & Health, Murphy was challenged to a WTT Supertiebreaker by 11-year-old Michelle Xu. When the youngster blasted a cross-court forehand to claim the first point, she put the Kastles' coach on alert.
Murphy raced back to take a 6-1 lead, but Xu would not go away easily, saving three game points before ultimately falling to her much-more experienced opponent 7-4.
Like Superman before him, Murphy changed costumes in a flash on Saturday, trading his tennis attire for formal wear at The White House Correspondents' Garden Brunch. Among the notable names joining Jensen were socialite Lindsay Lohan, Sports Illustrated swimsuit cover girls Kate Upton and Elle Macpherson, actors Woody Harrelson, Johnny Galecki and Matthew Morrison, and government leaders Gene Sperling, David Axelrod and Valerie Jarrett.
Coach Murphy has grown accustomed to a hectic schedule of late, having already undertaken a pair of new ventures in 2012.
Nearly 20 years after winning the French Open doubles title, Murphy and Luke Jensen have reunited as the tennis directors at the luxurious Sea Island resort in Southeastern Georgia. The younger Jensen brother has also launched an online tennis store -- MurphysTennisMarket.com -- specializing in racquets, memorabilia and merchandise such as Kastles' T-shirts and hats.
Amidst all of that, Murphy will return to the Greater Washington area May 10-13 for a second round of visits with local tennis clubs and organizations. Please contact Abby Zaniel at (202) 654-7027 for more information on how you can meet and compete with Murphy on your home court.
For photos from each of Murphy Jensen's stops over his wild weekend in the DC region, visit the Washington Kastles' Facebook page
. If you see a familiar face in any of the photos, be sure to tag him or her!
Michelle Xu and Coach Murphy Jensen shake hands at Regency Sport & Health on Saturday.
(Photo by USTA Virginia)