Alexey Miller, Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee, Georgy Poltavchenko, Governor of St. Petersburg, Shamil Tarpischev, President of the Russian Tennis Federation as well as famous tennis players: Elena Dementieva, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Marat Safin and Martina Hingis took part today in St. Petersburg in the groundbreaking ceremony of the Lakhta Tennis Club. It will be constructed by Gazprom near the Lakhta station where the first Russian tennis club was founded in 1888.
ôToday we are celebrating two events, both of which are ceremonial. It is the 125th anniversary of the first Russian tennis club. Ten years prior to the start of the 20th century future champions were learning the ropes of this wonderful game here. The Lakhta Tennis Club had survived two World Wars and trained many outstanding Russian tennis players, including Yevgeny Kudryavtsev, a seventeen-time National Champion. In the 1960s the Club was closed and torn down.
Another event is the start of the Tennis Academy construction. Gazprom and the Administration of St. Petersburg decided to revive the tennis traditions in Lakhta. Gazprom is a socially responsible Company and it will help train new world-class tennis players,ö said Alexey Miller.