As a former world-ranked tennis player, Venise Chan found pickleball as many other players do. Through the tennis community. She played tennis at the University of Washington, and a volunteer coach at the time, Irina Tereschenko (now a top-ranked pickleball pro!), introduced Venise to the game of pickleball. She loved it right away. But who wouldn’t when you’re literally learning from the best?
“I loved the sound of pickleball right away. I love the sound of tennis, too. But I love the sound of pickleball,” Venise says. “Because of my extensive tennis background, I found that I could pick up the basics of pickleball rather quickly. And so it became fun to play immediately for me.”
She’s being modest. So we’ll step in to list her athletic accomplishments. Her “extensive tennis background” includes being ranked the #2 tennis player in Asia. And climbing to #340 in the tennis world rankings. So when she picked up the pickleball paddle, she also picked up the skill of the game extremely quick. She even went on to win her very first pickleball tournament in Thailand. Just after playing five or six games of pickleball beforehand.
Her pickleball playing style is surely influenced by her tennis swing. But she does differentiate the two.
Venise says, “In tennis, I don’t tend to hit hard. I try to play the right angles and the right shots. And I think that has influenced my pickleball game. Pickleball is a smaller court and you have a split second to figure out the perfect finesse for different shot types. I have a lot to learn, and I can’t wait to get to the U.S. to start playing in tournaments there to perfect my game.”
Currently, Venise is back in Hong Kong, where she is not only playing pickleball, but also introducing the game to so many people in Hong Kong through tournament play.
But not for long. Baddle is helping Venise come to the United States to play in several tournaments here.
On her Baddle paddle, Venise says, “I like the Baddle paddles, because it’s not too light or too heavy. It’s nicely designed as well, and the grip fits me perfectly. Plus, it’s nice to have the protective sleeve that comes with the paddle.”
Venise has traveled to 30-40 countries by her estimate. So she’s used to global differences on and off the court. In Asian countries, pickleball isn’t quite as popular as the U.S. right now. So we’re excited that Venise is spreading the love of the game across the pond. And we’re equally as excited for her to experience the fans and players and pickleball community here in America.
Stay tuned for future updates about our partnership with Venise Chan. And in the meantime, be sure to follow her on Instagram to keep up with her journey.