1st January 2024
Dear Players, Coaches, Clubs, Partners, Volunteers and Sponsors,
On behalf on the Padel Federation of Ireland, I would like to extend our warmest wishes to everyone in the growing Padel community on the island of Ireland.
As we bid farewell to 2023, and we look forward to an exciting year ahead, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all of those who have actively participated in the growth and development of padel throughout Ireland.
2023 held exciting opportunities not only for padel players in Ireland, but for padel as a sport globally. The inclusion of Padel in the Krakow European Games 2023 was a milestone for padel and showcased our wonderful sport on the ’greatest stage’. This was an incredible achievement made possible by the International Governing Body of Padel (FIP). Ireland was honoured to be selected as one of the 23 countries participating alongside some of the strongest padel countries in the world.
We were also honoured to be embraced by the Olympic Federation of Ireland (OFI) as we joined Team Ireland to compete against the best. We sincerely thank the OFI for their hard work, guidance and support. We congratulate the incredible efforts of our players who participated with Team Ireland and who did us proud. Of equal importance, we would like to thank and acknowledge all of the players who put themselves forward and who were not selected. Your efforts were appreciated, and we thank each of you for the support that you showed your fellow players who went on to compete at the European Games. We were delighted to see that for many, this was a catalyst to embark on a journey in competitive padel. We look forward to seeing you advance and compete in the near future.
Another incredible milestone was the FIP Veterans European Championships held in la Nucia, Spain.
Building on the success of the Open Trials, we were delighted to welcome many new players to Ireland’s National Padel Team. Following the PFI’s hosting of the European Qualifiers for the World Veterans Padel Championships in 2022, we secured automatic entry into the main draw in La Nucia.
With a team comprising of over 30 players and guided by three coaches, our national team, proudly sponsored by CUPRA, demonstrated the results of their unwavering dedication and commitment to the game of padel.
As we kick off 2024, preparations are in motion for what holds the promise of another exciting year, presenting great opportunities for players and clubs across all levels.
This includes the expansion of the Irish Padel Tour (IPT), the official national ranking circuit of Ireland. The IPT calendar will be completed by the end of January, and we invite all clubs still hopingto host the official circuit to contact the IPT directly. We would encourage all players to participate in as many of the national competitions as possible. The IPT is open to players of all nationalities, and I would like to acknowledge the experience and skill that many of our players have brought to Ireland from other, more padel dominant, countries. This has been invaluable for the growth of padel in Ireland and your contribution is sincerely appreciated.
We thank all of the clubs who hosted the IPT this year, it was an incredible circuit and we look forward to welcoming the new venues for 2024.
We are also thrilled to announce the return of official International FIP tournaments to Ireland. Of particular excitement will be the arrival of the FIP Promises, a significant addition to the International Junior circuit, and a fantastic opportunity for Junior Players in Ireland. We encourage all clubs to motivate their Junior members to begin their preparations. We will shortly be announcing new Junior development programmes and workshops. Aligned with our development strategy, the goal is to equip our Juniors for competition at the next level. The Cupra FIP tournaments, integral to the official circuit with international rankings, are hosted by the affiliated Member Federation of the International Governing Body (FIP). Looking ahead, the next Junior World Padel Championships are scheduled for 2025.
We also had a busy and progressive year in the area of inclusion. 2023 saw our Women in Sport initiatives being rolled out again with fantastic results. Some of the female players, now competing in the Absolute category, received their introductory training through these programmes. We would like to thank all of the coaches involved in these programmes for their hard work and dedication. We are delighted that more clubs around the country will be hosting these free PFI funded programmes in 2024.
We have continued with our invaluable partnerships with St Michaels’ House and with the Irish Special Schools Sports Council (ISSSSC). The ongoing benefits of the sport of padel have been reported by everyone involved, and we continue to welcome more students to the programmes and workshops. These partnerships are nearing 6 years and we encourage all clubs to continue to engage with us to provide these programmes.
As padel grows, we are also delighted that in 2024, we will be building our first ever Adapted padel/wheelchair padel programme. We have worked with Active Disability Ireland on progressing with this, and we thank them for their support and guidance. This will be an exciting movement as the participation in adapted padel grows globally. The first World Padel Adapted Championships took place in 2022 and we expect many opportunities both at the grass roots and high-performance level.
Understandably, players are eager to know the official calendar for 2024. As soon as we receive the finalised dates, we will provide clubs with the information and publish the official calendar. The 14th edition of the FIP European National Team Championships, initially scheduled for the end of 2023, was postponed to the first half of 2024, the rescheduled dates have not yet been confirmed.
However, we can confirm that the 2024 edition of the Padel World Championship will take place from 28 October to 3 November 2024. This is exciting news and we look forward to continuing to grow and build our best team in preparation.The International Governing Body has also informed us that the dates and location for the FIP Veterans World Padel Championships will be decided shortly. The details for the Qualifiers and the Championships will be made available to coaches and clubs as soon as they are confirmed. We would encourage all players hoping to participate, to link in with their clubs for further details or enquire at firstname.lastname@example.org.
New training programmes will be rolled out in the coming months and we will be introducing more new coaches to help players to progress with their padel journey.
We would like to welcome the new Club Reps from 2023 and look forward to even more clubs joining the ever-growing padel community in 2024. Club reps will be provided with updated information on all that will be happening throughout the year. The PFI will continue to endeavour to provide guidance to new clubs commencing their padel venture around Ireland.
Finally, as our sport continues to grow, we will be reaching out for more volunteers to help in a number of areas and with a number of initiatives. Volunteers are an integral part of the growth of padel and we sincerely thank everyone who has volunteered their time in 2023. Clubs will be in touch in the New Year to let you know how you can get involved!
For more information on any of the above please contact your affiliated Club Rep or email email@example.com.
We would like to thank our sponsors, CUPRA Ireland and Decathlon, for joining us and supporting us on this journey and we look forward to welcoming some new and exciting sponsors in 2024!
In the meantime, I would like to wish you a Happy New Year and wish you the very best in your padel journey in 2024.
President of the Padel Federation of Ireland