A1 Padel and the New York Yankees present the United States debut of padel, the sports sensation sweeping across the globe.
Padel for Dummies
Though Padel has taken Europe and Africa by storm, the sport has not yet found its footing in the United States. Many have not even heard of the sport much less watch the matches or follow the tournaments. If this sounds like you, enjoy this brief description:
Padel is often called ‘tennis with walls’, and like tennis, is typically played in doubles. The playing area is typically a shade smaller than a traditional doubles tennis court. Unlike tennis, there are door-like openings on either side of the net through which players can run or hit the ball through.
Scoring runs much like tennis – hit the opponent’s side in bounds and don’t let the ball bounce twice on your side of the net. Gain four points before your opponent and you win a game. The first team to win six games will win the set. The first team to win two sets wins the entire match.
When asked what he thinks is responsible for Padel’s sudden boom in popularity, A1 Padel founder Fabrice Pastor had this to say:
“The sport has become the most successful sport in the history of sports, behind soccer, because it is easy to play and to learn so people have fun very quickly.”
The Yankees and A1 Padel
The New York Yankees relationship with A1 Padel goes back to October of 2022, when the Yankees bought a minority stake in the team. One October later, the Yankees will introduce Padel to the United States at Wollman Rink in New York City.
This tournament marks just the beginning of A1 Padel’s presence in the United States. In the minds of the Yankees and Pastor himself, the future holds so much more.
“Tournaments are going to happen in the U.S. This year there will be three tournaments, and next year I think we are going to hit five in major cities. We are also going to build academies to build the grassroots to have people learn the sport and become professional or semi-professional.” – Fabrice Pastor
The Yankees may have found themselves a winner in A1 Padel. If the sports catches on stateside as the Yankees and Pastor expect, that minority stake purchased last October could prove to be one of the savvier investments the Yankees have made in recent memory. Believing in the growth of smaller sports is part of the organization’s broader outreach efforts, in a different vain from their charity work with HOPE.
“For us it is a dream come true, to be with an operation like the Yankees. We are gonna storm the US and the shield of padel is going to be A1 padel.” – Fabrice Pastor
The tournament will run October 9-15, and Wollman Rink’s 4,000 capacity courts will undoubtedly be bursting at the seams come game time.