Every summer up until high school, I took tennis lessons with the Town of North Kingstown. It was part of a busy summer of recreation my brother, sister, and I participated in. The tennis courts at the North Kingstown High School was where you could find me, some time after swimming lessons, and just before creative writing at the NK Town Library. I was (and remain) a huge fan of the sport and still watch most of the major championships on TV. It is a sport that combines athleticism with hand-eye coordination and it helped me develop athletically for both high school and college baseball.
The North Kingstown Recreation Department’s Tennis Program is run by Cristelle Fox. I recently interviewed Coach Fox, just a few weeks after the newest member of her family was welcomed, Wesley Fox. I have attached the NK Recreation Department’s flyer for the tennis program at the end of this article. It is a clickable link to the NK Recreations Department’s website.
Good morning Coach Fox. Last we spoke, you were just about to add a new member to your family.
It’s been a bit hectic here the last five weeks. We now have a fifth member of our family, Wesley Fox joined us on the 4th April. He has been welcomed into the family but as always there are adjustments to adding a family member!
Amazing, best wishes to you and your family. So, can you tell me about your background and playing career?
Sure, well I was born in London, England. I started playing tennis at age 4. We had equivalent of Quick start called Short tennis. Played exactly the same way it is here, hence why I am such an advocate of Quickstart for our 10 and unders.
And did you end playing in my favorite tournament, Wimbledon?
I did. I played in junior Wimbledon and reached the doubles quarter finals. I played in the qualifying of Wimbledon. I represented and played for my county (equivalent to states here) and country as a junior.
And, I reached a career high world ranking of 347 in singles and in doubles.
That is impressive. How about college? Did you stay in England or play here in the US?
I played at Northwestern University from 2002-2006. There I reached number 1 in the country in both singles and doubles. I was a 4 time All American in singles, 3 time All American in doubles. I won NCAA doubles in 2006. And, I was a 3 time Big Ten Player of the Year.
Quite a resume, I would say. Now, after your playing career, you have transitioned into coaching. Where are some of the places you have coached?
I was an Assistant coach to the Yale University Women’s team as well as anAssistant coach to the URI Women’s tennis team. I am USPTA and USPTR certified. I have coached privately at Mystic Indoor tennis as well as at Pond View Racquet Club. I have been coaching at the Fox Tennis Camps and now coach the North Kingstown Recreation Tennis Summer program. I absolutely love teaching all ages and abilities. The NK Rec camps have been so much fun, as I’ve gotten to know the community I live in, I’ve gotten to introduce tennis to a whole bunch of kids and hopefully instilled not only that tennis is fun but the love of the game too!