Brookhaven Country Club in Farmers Branch is hosting the 2023 BioFreeze USA Pickleball National Championships as part of an ongoing 10-day pickleball marathon that included four days of a Major League Pickleball tournament last week.
The National Championship event officially began on Sunday as 288 participants broke a Guinness World Record for most participants in a continuous pickleball match. The tournament itself officially commenced on Monday morning.
“Technically, Nationals didn’t start until Monday, so I was worried that nobody was going to show up, and I’d have to pull in our staff to play, but we had waitlist upon waitlist to participate,” Professional Pickleball Association organizer Brook Thygerson told USA Pickleball. “People were asking every time they walked by me, ‘Can I jump in? How do I sign up?’ If we had more time and more bandwidth, I bet we could’ve played for a whole 24 hours with the amount of people that wanted to jump in for this event.”
A celebrity showdown was held Tuesday evening, featuring Dallas Mavericks head coach Jason Kidd and legendary forward Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Stars forward Tyler Seguin, former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, PGA Tour star Scottie Scheffler, and former pro tennis player John Isner.
As previously reported by The Dallas Express, Brookhaven underwent more than $5.3 million in renovations to prepare to host these events, adding courts in anticipation of more than 3,500 competitors as the event moved from California to the Dallas-Fort Worth area because of its more centralized location.
According to the BioFreeze USA Pickleball National Championships website, this year’s tournament is expected to become the largest in the 58-year history of the sport.
USA Pickleball noted that “the best pickleball players in the world” would compete in the National Championships. The tournament is divided by age and into men’s, women’s, and mixed brackets and features both singles play and doubles play at professional and amateur levels.
Skill levels were determined by each player’s official USA Pickleball rating as of September 19, 2023. Only players with a 5.0 rating or better are allowed to participate in the professional brackets.
To qualify for the event, players must have participated in at least one USA Pickleball-sanctioned event between June 28, 2022, and September 8, 2023.
Play begins at 9 a.m. CT all week leading up to the semifinals on Saturday and the Gold Medal Matches on Sunday. Live musical performances and other spectator activities will also be available throughout the week.