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Actress Elisabeth Shue makes USTA tournament debut

April 24, 2014 03:26 PM
Elisabeth Shue has been a regular participant in charity tennis events and has previously supported USTA youth tennis initiatives.

By McCarton Ackerman, USTA.com

Elisabeth Shue first rose to fame as attractive high school cheerleader Ali Mills in "The Karate Kid", but 30 years later, she’s ditched the pom-poms for tennis racquets and begun entering USTA tournaments.

The Academy Award nominated actress, who currently has a regular role as Julie Finlay on "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation", made her USTA tournament debut this week in the women’s singles qualifying draw of the 114th Annual Ojai Valley Open Tournament in Ojai, Calif. The tournament is considered to be one of the most prestigious amateur events in the country. She was joined in the tournament by Stefan “Redfoo” Gordy, the frontman for dance rap group LMFAO and the boyfriend of current world No. 4 Victoria Azarenka.

Shue has been playing tennis regularly for the last 11 years and has been a regular participant in the annual Chris Evert Pro-Celebrity Tennis Classic. She has also been an active promoter of the sport, joining John Isner and Sloane Stephens in 2012 for a youth tennis demo during the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells. Her love for the game is so all-consuming that she even announced in 2007 that she had begun training with multiple coaches in the hopes of embarking on a pro tennis career.

She even used her love of the game to convince the writers on "CSI" to create an episode centered around a murder at a tennis tournament, which aired last year. Chris Evert, Lindsay Davenport and Justin Gimelstob all made cameos as themselves in the episode and Shue even managed to find herself rallying with Evert in one of the scenes.

“I just wanted to hit the ball with her from the baseline, but then I was like, ‘That's so absurd. How would you interrogate someone from the baseline trying to hit the ball as hard as you can? That would be really stupid,’" joked Shue to TVGuide.com. “So I gave up my tennis ego for authenticity and volleyed.”




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