The National Bank Open, formerly Rogers Cup

Mario Brisebois: Thank you, Chantal Deschamps and congratulations, Stacey Allaster!

September 3, 2021
View from above of the Arthur Ashe Stadium at the US Open

Photo : Getty Images/ATP Tour

Since 1986, the first week of the US Open has coincided with the National Bank Canadian Junior Open Championships in Repentigny.  

A tribute to a great friend of the game is certainly in order.  

Mayor Chantal Deschamps, who has chaired the tournament’s organizing committee, announced she would not be seeking a seventh term. 

Visionary  

“It’s difficult to find another politician who’s done more for tennis over the years,” said Eugène Lapierre. 

Before he was appointed vice-president of Tennis Canada, he was the director of the tournament in Repentigny and got to know Chantal Deschamps very well.  

“Back then, I discovered a natural leader and competent administrator who understood that an event like the one in Repentigny could have a major impact and make the municipality stand out,” he added.  

Eugene Lapierre sits in a press conference
Photo : Tennis Canada

Mayor Deschamps was also a leader in tennis who especially valued human relationships.  

“What really struck me was the genuine attention she paid to every person involved in the tournament—every player, every partner, every volunteer. A woman with a big heart! To me, that was the key to her success with the people of Repentigny during all those years,” he said.  

The mayor is also a visionary.  

“I often had the impression she saw the junior championship as a symbol of Repentigny’s openness to people from around the world and a celebration of the dynamism of youth,” affirmed Lapierre.  

Securing the future 

Until the very end of her mandate, Chantal Deschamps remained loyal tennis.  

“Her last achievement was ensuring the National Bank Canadian Junior Open Championships in Repentigny would go on, and she renewed the agreement with Tennis Canada for the next ten years,” announced Eugène Lapierre.  

Words from a famous citizen 

The very first director of the event in Repentigny 35 years ago was Richard Legendre.  

When René Gauthier oversaw sports and recreation in the municipality. 

“If Repentigny became one of Québec’s leading tennis cities, it’s thanks to Chantal Deschamps,” affirmed Legendre. 

“As the volunteer chair and mayor for 20 years, she secured Repentigny’s vocation not only through her support for the tournament but also through major municipal investments in tennis infrastructures, including those in Parc Larochelle,” he added. And Richard Legendre knows firsthand, since he’s a proud citizen of Repentigny himself!  

Djoko is everywhere! 

He’s said it himself. The expectations are so high that Novak Djokovic feels more pressure in New York this year without Roger and Rafa.  

According to a TennisActu survey, 93.2% of fans believe the Djoker will win at Flushing Meadows and secure a calendar Grand Slam. HUGE.  

And 94.1% of respondents said he will be the first of the Big Three to secure 21 majors. Maybe even as early as next week!  

Gold star Stacey Allaster 

Novak isn’t the only one feeling the pressure in Queens.  

So is Canadian Stacey Allaster, the first woman to be named tournament director of a Grand Slam and the US Open.  

Organizing a major is a complex undertaking. Now, just imagine the shock when Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that proof of vaccination would be required to attend!  

Born in Windsor, Ontario, Stacey Allaster spent many years in tennis in Welland, was the tournament director in Toronto and then moved on the WTA and the USTA.  

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