Brussels, world capital of padel for four days
Almost completely unknown five years ago, this racket sport has boomed over the past few years. Extremely popular in Spain and Argentina, padel already has millions of players around the world. The best of them will be competing from 26 to 29 September at Place Rogier in Brussels.
As part of the European Week of Sport ("Be Active", initiative by the non-profit organisation ULB Sports), Brussels is welcoming the Belgian leg of the padel world championship for a period of four days. The organisers are expecting more than ten thousand spectators around the two courts that have been set up on Place Rogier. Apart from the competitions, exhibitions and introductory experiences will also be offered to the public.
Invented in Mexico, padel is played solely in "doubles" (two against two). An amusing combination of tennis and squash, it is played on a mini tennis court (10m by 20m), surrounded by fences and glazed walls over 3m high. The major difference with tennis is the fact that the balls can be played after bouncing against the walls or fences, the same as in squash. This sport is still relatively unknown although it is becoming increasingly popular around the world. In Belgium, there are already about a hundred clubs (five years ago, there were only 3). In Spain, however, more than four million people already play padel regularly.