Three Tennis Greats Ace it Out for the “Generosity Challenge” on the Champs-Elysées in Paris
With just a few days left until the French Open in Roland Garros, title champion Maria Sharapova and Japanese phenom Kei Nishikori answered the call from TAG Heuer to play the most original match on the circuit – in front of the boutique at 104 Champs-Elysées under the watchful eye of none other than Michael Chang in the umpire’s chair.
Together, just for fun and especially for the kids in hospital care for which Theodora provides relief through laughter, they competed in a most unusual tournament: the Generosity Challenge. Each player took turns trying to hit targets on the boutique’s storefront window with foam balls.
The goal of the Generosity Challenge was to hit as many targets as possible in 2 x 3 minutes. Michael Chang held a scoreboard which he activated each time the countdown began. Next, the two champions each coached a team of three children with their swing: they also had 2 x 3 minutes to hit as many targets with the foam balls as possible.
The event – which took place late in the afternoon at 5:45 pm and was moderated by decathlon champion, TV commentator and Roland Garros presentator Marc Maury – testified to the close ties between the players and the enormous of community of fans and followers who were able to support their heroes before, during and after the match thanks to a live telecast on Periscope.
Here and there in the large crowd that formed in front of the boutique there were banners made in Japan and Russia, held up to cheer the two players on (fans signed them and wrote down words of encouragement) during the epic challenge.
For the event’s finale, Mathieu Selzer, Director of TAG Heuer France, presented Emmanuelle Vedrenne, Director of Theodora, with a check in the amount of 10,000 euros. The Theodora Association aims to lighten the everyday burden that weighs on kids in hospitals as well as autistic children in specialized institutions through visits by professional clowns who have special training to perform in care facilities and for young patents with special care needs.