[box type = ”warning” align = ”aligncenter”] Cédric Carité, president of the National Padel League (LNP) wanted to react to the interview below with Jean-Noël Grinda in answering directly in his press release. [/ box]
Padel Magazine – Jean-Noël Grinda (JNG), winner of Roland Garros Junior, former French 2 tennis player, is back on his Padel career as a former co-President of the French Padel Federation (FFP) and a big fan of the sport. JNG chose Padel Magazine to get out of his reserve and answer different things. To prove all his words, JNG in total transparency, wanted to accompany his testimony by putting on line the FFT Court Judgments - Carity and the Correspondence between FFP and FTT.

Padel Magazine - Did you want to get Padel closer to the FFT? And why did it take so much time?

Jean-Noël Grinda (JNG) - First, contrary to what was said, I was the initiator of the rapprochement between the Padel and the French Tennis Federation (FFT) and that from my arrival at the head of the FFP in 2007. We have many documents, have made several appointments with the FFT at Roland Garros with the President and his teams then. If the FFT has now integrated the Padel, the ambition for us is therefore not yesterday.

Padel Magazine - You said outside interview, that you regret that some people go so far as to criticize the integrity and recognition of the FFP ...

We have been a federation for 22 years. I was co-President of the FFP for 7 years.

We have benefited from a Convention signed with the Jeu de Paume (On the directive of Dominique BREDIN Sports Minister of the time) and grants from the Ministry of Sports for 21 years.

In 2009 the French Tennis Federation awarded us a grant of 20.000 euros to help us develop the Padel in Ile-de-France, the first step towards a definitive rapprochement (a draft FFT / FFP Partnership Agreement was drafted with Mr BAUD at the request of Christian BIMES).

The draft of a national plan to renovate dozens of tennis courts not used in Padel courts was even mentioned to diversify the offer of these clubs.

We organized a world championship in 2000 with 14 nations, Place du Capitole in Toulouse, a European championship at AIX in PROVENCE in 2009 and participated in all the European and World Championships organized by the FIP (of which we were member)

Do you really think we could have done all this if we did not have adequate recognition?

So yes when I read here or there or when I hear some scandalously criticize the FFP, we would have taken advantage of the situation to enrich ourselves, and I do not, I find it laughable!

Padel Magazine - Why take control of the FFP?

The FFP was in receivership with a plan of continuation to clear 50382 euros of debts in 10 years, debts that we inherited from the past and reduced by half today. The leaders then came to me for help. I posed as the only condition on my arrival that I could direct Padel to the FFT because I thought it was the best guarantee of development of the sport that is so dear to me.

With my status as a former Davis Cup Tennis player and my privileged relationship with Christian Bimes, then President of the FFT, I thought I could get there in a relatively short time. The FFP committee at the time accepted my proposal and I became the co-chair of the FFP. This was the only reason for my arrival in Padel.

But then why did it take so long for the FFT to integrate Padel?

Christian Bimes did not wish to represent himself in 2009 while he was for the immediate integration of Padel. When Jean Gachassin became the new president of the FFT, Padel was no longer an urgent priority for the FFT. He has also made it clear in a letter he sent us 5 years ago.

We were then asked by the Ministry to be an independent Federation. But it was not possible. Too complicated, too much debt, and then you had to have a certain number of licensees, to be a sufficiently mature sport .... Which is still not the case.

And then in 2013 we found ourselves without subsidy, I paid my pocket several thousand Euros and other members of the Committee by the way, in order to delay the deadline of the liquidation as much as possible. So we asked to be bankrupt very logically because we could not pay our debts anymore.

All of these reasons have meant that it has taken longer than expected to bring about this rapprochement. But it's done. I am delighted and I hope Padel will really explode. There is also a very clear development of Padel since one or two years.

You explained to me that I was disappointed by Cédric Carité and even had sadness. Why ?

Cédric Carité is a good player, he played with my son in France, and I received it at home. We trusted him, and helped him on every level to get into Padel. The FFP had made it his only employee and had named him DTN. In return, it cost the FFP (25000 euros in legal fees (2013, 2014)) a lot of money for several proceedings initiated by him. He became "persona non grata" in many French clubs because of shocking behavior, on or off the pitch and that ended with an illegal action against the FFP, action for which he was sentenced. (FFT Court Judgments - Carity)

Sad and disappointed ... Yes!

Let's change the subject, if you allow me, to talk about your story around the Padel ... It starts soon after your Tennis career?

I have always lived Padel.

I actually knew Enrique Corquera the founder of the Padel in the 70 years and we had set up a dozen private lands from Padel to Acapulco. At the time we met every year around the Christmas period to compete in what was pompously called our "world championships". It was quite picturesque because there were no clubs and the matches were played on different courts in different private homes! In addition, each house had different rules depending on the specificity of the court. The dimensions were never the same, the height of the net, the walls, (see the absence of some walls!) Were not identical and each host had his opinion on how the game was to be played. Prohibition of stolen service, or smashing the ball off the pitch were some examples! Needless to say, there was already a lot of debate, but always in a good mood.

Fortunately with the success the game has been standardized little by little to finally arrive at the rules and dimensions that we know today.

For two years, Padel has finally taken off. People who try are passionate about Padel, both young and old. I had knee surgery and yet Padel allows me to have a lot of fun. I play there almost every day with my wife and all the neighbors who have all been there. My land is in my garden, it's telling you.

What is Padel's future for you?

Padel has a wonderful future. Thanks to the support of the FFT, Padel will finally benefit from the logistical and structural support it deserves and which will enable it to become sustainable. The padel is the perfect sport to complement the offer in the tennis clubs. See what is happening in Spain where tennis clubs have been given new impetus with the establishment of Padel courts to diversify the offer to customers. To the point of becoming a national sport.

I hope very soon I will see this in France because it is just a phenomenal sport.

Franck Binisti - Padel Magazine

Ps: Thanks to contrast-photographe.com for the realization of these beautiful photos.

[author image = ”https://padelmagazine.fr/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/10499544_659989347431520_1733810129664643128_o.jpg”] After obtaining his padel instructor diploma from the Madrilenian padel Federation, Franck Binisti created with a small group: Padel Magazine. This site will become the first French padel website. Thanks to the readers, Padel Magazine will set up the GOTOPADEL padel directory. Franck also manages the development of the National Padel Cup in partnership with Christophe Lesage and the National Tennis Cup. [/ Author]

Franck Binisti

Franck Binisti discovers the padel at the Pyramid Club in 2009 in the Paris region. Since then padel is part of his life. You often see him touring France by going to cover the big French paddle events.