RACKETS Cubed, which is already helping primary school children in inner-city Bradford as well as in Keighley and beyond via racquet sports, education and nutrition, are the official charity of the 2023 Ilkley Trophy.

The ATP Challenger ($125,000 prize money) and ITF Women’s World Tour ($100,000 prize money) event, held from Saturday, June 17 to Saturday, June 24, is just two weeks before Wimbledon and is the biggest tennis tournament in the North of England.

The charity was chosen for its work with children in under-served areas (up to 30 Key Stage Two pupils in a six-week pilot), providing them not only with exercise but also enhanced education and a healthy diet.

Integrated racquet sport lessons, STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) education and nutrition programmes are part of weekly after-school sessions at a host site.

For example, Bowling Park Primary’s are at the University of Bradford, Atlas Community Primary’s at Bradford Grammar School and Riddlesden St Mary’s Primary’s are at Ilkley Lawn Tennis & Squash Club (ILTSC), home of the Ilkley Trophy.

Research in Leeds last year has shown a 78 per cent improvement in a child’s physical ability score by the end of the programme.

ILTSC chairman Rik Smith said: “We’ve seen the work that Rackets Cubed has done in the local area and we are proud to host one of their programmes at the club.

“We have been really impressed by their commitment to helping children from really tough backgrounds.”

Smith added: “We believe that tennis is for everyone, and Rackets Cubed does incredible work in making that a reality for kids across Yorkshire. We’re proud to support them.”

Former Yorkshire county player Geoff Newton said: “As president of Rackets Cubed, and by coincidence of timing, also president of Yorkshire Tennis, I am doubly proud that Rackets Cubed is the chosen charity of such a prestigious event.

“The values and objectives of Rackets Cubed are shared by ILTSC and we have established a great partnership, helping young children from under-served communities in Bradford, which we look forward to developing further.”

The Ilkley Trophy made a successful sun-baked return last year after a two-year Covid absence, and attendances were boosted by the presence of former world top-tenners Jack Sock and Kristina Mladenovic as well as a British runner-up in Jodie Burrage.

Tickets are on sale for the Ilkley Trophy, with Centre Court seating and general admission prices being as little as £13 for adults and £7 for children, while admission on day one (June 17) is free.

Hospitality packages are available from chris@iltsc.co.uk