Las Vegas casino night coming to Milsoms Kesgrave this spring

Saturday 1st February 2020

The Elena Baltacha Foundation is holding the casino night, on Friday March 20, to raise funds for their newest project - SportSkills4Business.

The foundation is run by chairman, Nino Severino, husband of the former British number one tennis player, known as Bally, who lost her battle with liver cancer in 2014 at just 30 years old.

He said: "The casino night promises to be a fantastic evening of entertainment.

"Bally set up her tennis academy with one goal - to give more children, from all backgrounds, the chance to learn to play the sport in which she dedicated her life to.

"Fundraising events like this are vital to continue Bally's legacy of inspiring youngsters to pick up a racket and play tennis."

The latest project helps young athletes transition from high profile sports careers to the reality of getting a job once their time in the spotlight is over, and is thought to be entirely unique.

Mr Severino explained how the programme prepares them, saying: "As an athlete they are constantly surrounded by teams of people, their coach, their physio, their nutritionist, a whole team dedicated to helping them - and then when they exit it's all gone.

"They need to find a new life and we want to help them to transition onto that career pathway."

The evening fundraiser will have six casino tables, Rat-Pack style music from the Hi-Hat Jacks and Vegas style street food.

Sports cars such as Lamborginis and Ferraris will be on display in the forecourt.

Tickets for the evening cost £65 and there are 250 on offer, quests will receive $30 of complimentary starter chips.

A silent auction will sell off memorabilia from the World Tennis Tour to the highest bidders alongside other prizes.

Mr Severino said that whilst the SportSkills4Business project is currently limited to Suffolk, they do want it to go national, adding: "We are very proud to fly the flag for Ipswich and Suffolk."

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