Washington Kastles

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Washington Kastles
Founded 2008
League World TeamTennis
Team history Washington Kastles
2008–present
Based in Washington, D.C.
Stadium Kastles Stadium at The Charles E. Smith Center
Colors

Red, White and Navy

              
Owner(s) Mark Ein
Head coach Murphy Jensen
Championships 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013
Division titles 4
Cheerleaders 8
Mascot Topspin and Slice

The Washington Kastles is one of seven franchises currently competing in World TeamTennis. The Las Vegas Neon franchise was terminated by the WTT after the Sacramento Capitals were purchased and relocated to Las Vegas.

Based in Washington, D.C. since 2008, the Kastles won the WTT championship following the 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013 seasons. The uncommon spelling of the team's name traces to team owner Mark Ein's ownership of Kastle Systems, an office security company.

Stadium[edit]

The Kastles will play the 2014 season at the Charles E. Smith Center at George Washington University. The Charles E. Smith Center is located at 22nd and G Streets NW. The team played its first three seasons in a temporary stadium constructed each summer on the former site of the former Washington Convention Center. The Kastles played the 2011, 2012 and 2013 seasons at Kastles Stadium at The Wharf, a 2,600-seat facility erected in 2011 on the Southwest Waterfront in Washington, D.C.. That was closed in preparation for the development of the city's waterfront.

History[edit]

The Kastles began World TeamTennis play as an expansion franchise in 2008 and finished 6-8 in their inaugural season. They won their first King Trophy, named after former world No. 1 player and league co-owner Billie Jean King, in 2009 despite losing their first four matches and finishing just 7-7 during the regular season. The Kastles failed to qualify for the playoffs in 2010, but went undefeated in both 2011 and 2012, winning all 14 regular-season matches, the Eastern Conference championship and the WTT championship in each season.

The undefeated 2011 season marked the first time in the history of World Team Tennis that a team went 16-0 and was only the second time, behind the 1994 Newport Beach Dukes, that a team did not lose a regular season match. The 1994 Newport Beach Dukes lost in the playoffs and did not win the league championship. It was the first time a Washington professional sports team posted an undefeated regular season and won its league championship.

In 2012, the Kastles became the first professional sports team in the United States to complete back-to-back perfect seasons when they again finished 16-0.

In the 2013 season opener versus the New York Sportimes, the Washington Kastles recorded their 33rd consecutive win by a score of 23-15. which equaled the winning streak of the 1971-1972 LA Lakers of the NBA. In the second match of the season versus the Boston Lobsters, the Kastles recorded their 34th consecutive win by a score of 25-12 setting a new winning streak high for a major professional sports team. On July 10, 2013 the Kastles had their winning streak snapped by the Texas Wild in Las Colinas, TX. The next night at home, the Kastles fell to the Springfield Lasers. The Kastles won the remaining 10 matches of the regular season and ended up with the best record in the WTT at 12-2. The Kastles beat the Boston Lobsters in the Eastern Conference Championship match on July 25 by a score of 25-12. The Kastles repeated that score of 25-12 in the WTT Championship match against the Springfield Lasers to win their third consecutive WTT Championship and a final season record of 14-2.

Justin Gimelstob - Anna Kournikova controversy[edit]

On June 25, 2008, Kastles player Justin Gimelstob was on the Washington, D.C. morning radio show "The Sports Junkies", talking about his tennis career, his interactions with other tennis pros, his dalliances with such female players as Martina Hingis, and a variety of other topics. During the interview, Gimelstob, a regular guest on the show, said that he when he faced Anna Kournikova (who played for the St. Louis Aces) the following month match in Washington: "I’m going to serve it right at the body, about 128, right into her midriff. If she's not crying by the time she comes off court then I did not do my job." Asked if that meant he hated the Russian, with whom he trained as a youth, he replied: "Hate is a very strong word. I just despise her to the maximum level just below hate." He added that he would not like to sleep with Kournikova, "because she's such a douche." Instead, "I wouldn't mind having my younger brother, who's a kind of a stud, nail her and then reap the benefits of that."

Gimestob would subsequently lose his job as a commentator on the Tennis Network.

Kournikova originally had planned to pull herself from the event but decided to play. In the mixed doubles portion of the match, Mashona Washington and Gimelstob defeated Kournikova and Travis Rettenmaier. 5-2 (though Gimestob did not start the set. He came in for Scott Oudsema at 2-0)

Head coach[edit]

Thomas Blake was named head coach of the Washington Kastles in June 2008. Blake became a professional tennis player in 1996 and most notably partnered with his brother, James Blake, to play doubles in the US Open in 1996 and 2002. In 2005, Blake retired from professional singles play.

Murphy Jensen was named the Kastles' head coach at the start of the 2009 season. Jensen and his brother, Luke won the French Open doubles championship in 1993 and hosts a show on The Tennis Channel. After the Kastles finished undefeated in 2011 and 2012, Jensen was named the league's Coach of the Year. Jensen was also named the league's Coach of the Year in 2013.

Current squad[edit]

2008 Season[edit]

Record: 6-8 (Inaugural Season)

2009 Season[edit]

Record: 7-7 (Eastern Conference Second Seed)

  • July 2 @ Newport Beach Breakers: 21-20 loss (0-1)
  • July 3 @ Sacramento Capitals: 22-18 loss (0-2)
  • July 7 hosted Philadelphia Freedoms: (PHL - Venus Williams) 23-16 loss (0-3)
  • July 8 hosted St. Louis Aces: (STL - Anna Kournikova Did Not Play) 20-15 loss (0-4)
  • July 9 @ Boston Lobsters: (WAS - Serena Williams) 24-17 win (1-4)
  • July 10 @ New York Sportimes: (WAS - Serena Williams) 25-13 win (2-4)
  • July 12 hosted New York Buzz: 19-15 win (3-4)
  • July 13 @ Philadelphia Freedoms: (WAS - Serena Williams) 19-18 win (Super Tiebreak) (4-4)
  • July 14 hosted Newport Beach Breakers: (WAS - Serena Williams) 22-12 win (5-4)
  • July 16 hosted New York Sportimes: (NYS - John McEnroe) 20-19 loss (Super Tiebreak) (5-5)
  • July 18 @ Kansas City Explorers: (KCS - Bob & Mike Bryan) 24-17 loss (5-6)
  • July 20 @ Springfield Lasers: 24-16 loss (5-7)
  • July 21 hosted New York Buzz: 23-12 win (6-7)
  • July 22 hosted Springfield Lasers: 21-14 win (7-7)

Eastern Conference Championship (Kastles Stadium, City Center, Washington, DC)

World Team Tennis Championship (Kastles Stadium, City Center, Washington, DC)

2010 Season Results[edit]

Record: 8-6

  • @ New York Sportimes: 20-21 loss (0-1)
  • hosted Philadelphia Freedoms: 21-15 win (1-1)
  • July 7 hosted New York Buzz (WAS - Venus Williams, NYS - Martina Hingis): 25-15 win (2-1)
  • July 8 @ Philadelphia Freedoms (WAS - Venus Williams): 21-20 win (3-1)
  • @ New York Buzz: 20-12 win (4-1)
  • July 10 @ St. Louis Aces (WAS - Venus Williams): 23-16 win (5-1)
  • hosted New York Buzz: 21-20 win (6-1)
  • @ Philadelphia Freedoms: 18-24 lost (6-2)
  • hosted Kansas City Explorers: 22-24 loss (6-3)
  • @ New York Sportimes: 18-23 loss (6-4)
  • hosted Boston Lobsters: 16-20 loss (7-4)
  • hosted New York Sportimes: 22-16 win (7-5)
  • hosted St. Louis Aces: 19-17 win (8-5)
  • @ Boston Lobsters: 15-24 loss (8-6)

2011 Season[edit]

Record: 16-0 (World TeamTennis champions)

Eastern Conference Championship (Family Circle Tennis Center, Charleston, SC)

World Team Tennis Championship (Family Circle Tennis Center, Charleston, SC)

2012 Season[edit]

Record: 16-0 (World TeamTennis champions)

Eastern Conference Championship (Family Circle Tennis Center, Charleston, SC)

World Team Tennis Championship (Family Circle Tennis Center, Charleston, SC)

  • September 16 - Sacramento Capitals: 20-19 win (WAS: Venus Williams, SAC: Kevin Anderson) (16-0)

2013 Season[edit]

Eastern Conference Championship (Kastles Stadium at The Wharf, Washington, DC)

World Team Tennis Championship (Kastles Stadium at The Wharf, Washington, DC)

2014 Season[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]