A Ballycastle tennis coach is planning to ‘serve up’ an eight hour tennis marathon to raise funds for the charity Tiny Life.
Sean Moloney will be hoping it’s ‘game, set and match’ when it comes to hitting his target of £1,000 after the marathon which will take place at Ballycastle Tennis Club on April 24th from 10am - 6pm.
The Ballycastle man, who is originally from Armoy, decided to tackle the marathon after the premature birth of his son James who is now a healthy four-year-old and attends the nursery at St Patrick’s and St Brigid’s PS in the town.
However, it was a different story in August 2011 when James was born two weeks early at the Causeway Hospital in Coleraine.
“When James was born in Coleraine everything was fine,” said Sean, “but two hours later he developed problems and had to be rushed to the neo-natal unit in Antrim.
“My wife Ania wasn’t able to go with him so I went. The staff in both hospitals were 100% but the support Tiny Life gave was unreal - both to him and to us as parents.
“When James developed problems, we were in unknown territory.
“We just didn’t know what was going on.
“All we knew was that there was our tiny baby in an incubator.
“They gave such support - mentally more than anything. Tiny Life just stepped in and helped get you sorted out.
“For example, they had a room where you could get some sleep if you had to stay over, or if you needed help with feeding, you just pushed a button and they were there. If you needed anything, they were there.
“Nothing was too much trouble.”
Sean has already raised £500 before the tennis marathon even takes place!
“My original target was £500 but now that we have passed that, I am aiming for £1,000.
“I have a JustGiving page set up https://www.justgiving.com/Sean-Moloney and have coin collectors in McLister’s in Ballycastle where I’m a manager.
“On the day of the marathon, I will also have buckets around the tennis courts if anyone wants to donate.”
Sean has been playing tennis for many years and has represented Ulster and Ireland in the past.
He has recently completed coaching qualifications and is currently training some Ulster and Irish seeds.
“I’ve always been interested in tennis so this just seemed to be the right thing to do to raise money for Tiny Life,” he said.