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Father and Sons Tie Tennis & Baseball

July 24, 2016 05:52 PM
 
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Colby Edwards owes some of his serving power to his career as a college pitcher.
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David Edwards started playing tennis when he was 40.

By Ron Cioffi/USTA Southern

“It’s just a blessing to be able to play with my two sons,” said David Edwards.

The sentiment seemed to be shared by sons Colby and Kyle as they sat upon a shaded bench at the Copeland-Cox Mobile Tennis Center.

David, the captain of their 4.0 team out of Columbia, S.C., was introduced to tennis 20 years ago when he went on a 40th birthday trip that included lessons at Callaway Gardens.

Soon, he started playing leagues and bringing his boys out on the court. “I still have a shirt that says ‘Mixed 1997,’ ” he said.

“I’ve always heard that USTA was a lot about family. This year it’s proven to be true with us. We were traveling together, staying together and competing together,” David said in a video the trio taped for the tournament.

“This is a really special time for all three of us,” Colby said. “My brother and I have grown up playing tennis. Dad introduced us to it at a relatively young age.”

Colby also joked about his dad’s skill on the court, and his own increasing prowess. “He carried me for about 18 years and I guess it’s my turn to take over.” Considering Colby’s notable height and size, that seems quite doable.

The three teammates also talked about the bond they share with another sport – baseball.

Kyle, who grew up playing baseball, talked about the comparisons between the two sports. “Definitely fielding. The skills are the same with a lot of similarities in hand-eye coordination.”  He pitched and played second base, along with honing his tennis shots in a Junior Team Tennis league.

Colby played first base and pitched throughout high school and at the University of South Carolina-Lancaster. “Baseball and tennis go hand-in-hand,” Colby said. “Pitching has helped me with my serve. I also serve and volley a lot.”

Both Kyle and Colby play doubles on the team that advanced to the 4.0 finals here. After some experimenting with teaming up together, the Edwards clan decided the family bonds didn’t translate well to doubles teams.

Still, his sons’ abilities on court make David a proud dad. “Youth and talent is a tough combo,” he said warmly.

 

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