POSTED: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 - 5:00pm
UPDATED: Thursday, March 21, 2013 - 10:48am
BATON ROUGE, LA (NBC33) — Over 100 pro and amateur wheelchair tennis players hit the courts for their first day of the Cajun Classic.
"This tournament has been in existence for 20 years. This is one of the oldest tournaments on the tour," said USTA National Manager, Dan James
The Cajun Classic brings people from all over the globe to Baton Rouge, including Nick Taylor.
Nick is a quadriplegic who started playing tennis at age 14.
"I think I played this tournament for the first time 8 or 9 years ago and really enjoyed it," stated Taylor. “I really wanted to represent my high school, and tennis gave me the avenue to do that. From there, I discovered wheelchair tennis."
Now, he’s traveled as far as London to compete and then win in the sport, but he says it didn't come easy.
“For me, training for something like the Paralympics in London last year, I was training 6-8 hours a day on the court. Now, I'm that at the elite Paralympics level," noted Taylor.
The only difference between wheelchair tennis and a regular game is that there can be two bounces opposed to only one.
“We have had training programs come up all over the world, and these players start from local programs," said James.
So now Nick hopes in his ninth year back in Baton Rouge, he will take home a little more than just a memory.
“I hope to win. I have a good chance at doubles; singles would be little tougher,” noted Taylor.
The Cajun Classic will be going on until Saturday. It’s being held at the YMCA Lamar Tennis Center here in Baton rouge.