Generous donation by alumnus provides new tennis courts


Courtesy of Chaminade Athletics

CUH tennis courts are given a makeover.

By Chantelle Aguilar, Staff Writer

The Chaminade tennis courts have finally seen a makeover. Thanks to a generous donation, senior tennis player Kimberly Takara feels comfortable and confident with the newly renovated courts.

“We are very lucky to have received such a generous donation,” said Takara. “Due to this, the team and I have felt a boost in morale and are looking forward to this upcoming season.”

Athletic director Bill Villa found out nearly a year ago that Sai Cheong Chui, an alumnus who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in 1976 and a master’s in 1978, would be making a $100,000 donation to the courts, calling it “God sent.” The renovation took place in July and the final walk through for approval of the courts was held on Aug. 24.

“I believe they feel like, ‘hey we matter,’ which they do, they matter,” Villa said.

With the new courts, players are motivated to work even harder says Villa. Prior to the transformation, the courts had been neglected, making it “dangerous” for players. The courts reached unappealing conditions that at one point it resembled the “road.”

“We struggled playing on a slanted surface, tripping over bumps and cracks in the court due to erosion, and sliding over loose gravel and dirt.”

Takara feels the team was lucky enough to even have tennis courts on campus, giving the players the ability to hit whenever they wanted. Now, the players are able to enjoy safe and appealing courts.

“Its probably one of the best things that has happened in a very long time,” said tennis coach Ty Aki.

Aki, who has been coach for a year, said that those who have played on the courts say they are “blown away” with the renovation. Although the team does not officially begin practice until October, some players have gotten permission to use the courts. Given the conditions of the previous court, Aki mentioned that prior coaches went as far as taking the girls to other facilities to practice.

The Chaminade community is grateful for the generous donation made by Chui. An alumnus of CUH, Chui fondly remembers his time at Chaminade and also played on the tennis courts as a student. Chui had visited Chaminade a year ago and heard about the conditions of the courts.

“I felt renovations would make an immediate impact visually for visitors and assist with recruiting of new students,” said Chui, in an e-mail. “Also for current students, faculty and staff, this renovation could benefit them too.”

Chui, who is a businessman based in China, was sent photos of the completed courts and said he is very happy with the final look.

The athletic department is working on a new system where students, staff and faculty can reserve time slots on the new courts. Priority will be given to the tennis team. All who are curious could e-mail, call or go to the athletics department to reserve a time. This will give others the opportunity to also play on the courts; rules will be enforced to protect the courts of possible damage.