When you get an invitation to go play tennis at Wimbledon with Martina Hingis, you put on your finest tennis whites quicker than you can say “game, set, match!” and head over there as fast as your feet can possibly take you. So when sunglasses brand Maui Jim invited me to do just that, that’s exactly what I did. How many times in your life do you get the opportunity to hit a few balls with a bona fide tennis superstar?
Maui Jim is an American sunglass brand (founded in Hawaii, if you hadn’t guessed) known for their high performance polarised sunglasses designed to protect your eyes in even the sunniest and brightest conditions, from lightweight sporty models to everyday frames. Tennis players spend their days outdoors and know how important it is to keep their eyes protected – no one knows this better than the newest Maui Jim ambassador Martina Hingis, who has been playing tennis since she was just 2 years old…
Anyway, so that’s how I ended up at Wimbledon playing an absolute tennis legend… Confession time: I had never even played tennis before that day. Sure, I’ve watched it on tv many times, but I’d never actually played, so was obviously a bit nervous about a having a 2 hour tennis clinic with Martina and Old England Club head coach Dan Bloxham. I’m so happy I did it though – it was fun, challenging and I can definitely say I’m now a tennis convert.
With a pair of brand new Maui Jim Kawika sunnies on my face, we were put through our paces by Martina and Dan and I could immediately tell how the polarised lenses made a huge difference – the ball looked really clear and (almost) unmissable. Although it was my first time playing, I somehow still came third and even won a Fitbit. Although I probably won’t be playing the Wimbledon final anytime soon (or, you know… ever) I’m definitely hooked and already looking at playing more in the future. I was pleasantly surprised to discover that you can actually play for free or for very little in the UK, with schemes like Nike’s Tennis Tuesdays or Tennis for Free opening up the sport to everyone.
Although I’m super excited to keep playing, I’m not sure any tennis experience can ever top playing a tennis superstar, on the hallowed grounds of Wimbledon and getting a lovely prize after the game… Thanks Maui Jim for a truly great experience!