Eric Perkins and David Watkins break World Record for longest tennis match

4:44 PM, Oct 18, 2010   |    comments
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ST. PETER, Minn. -- Eric Perkins and David Watkins have played enough continuous tennis at Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota to break the current record World Record for singles tennis.

The two started playing at 9:30 a.m. Monday, May 3rd and finished just after 10:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 4th. Eric and Dave volleyed for 36 hours, 36 minutes and 36 seconds. They took only 90 seconds between games and stopped to rest for only five minutes for each of the 36 hours.

World Records officials will review the tennis court marathon before making the achievement official.

"This feels amazing. We're World Record holders," Dave said live on KARE 11 News at 10 p.m. on Wednesday.

In all, Eric and Dave played 68 sets of tennis. Eric won 65 of those sets, but lost a pair of shoes in the process.

"They had to use the jaws of life to get my toes free from my footwear," Eric joked about his shoes, which had the fronts cut off to reveal blistered toes.

"The overnight hours from 2 a.m. to 7 a.m. got really rough. But by the time noon rolled around we thought we could do it," Dave said.

"What pulled us through was this amazing support staff here at Gustavus Adolphus College," Eric added, specially thanking current men's tennis coach Tommy Valentini and former head coach Steve Wilkinson.

Wilkinson was the inspiration for this record-breaking performance. Wilk, as he's known on campus, is currently battling cancer. He says Eric and Dave's tennis stunt helped to jump start the local American Cancer Society Relay for Life effort in St. Peter.

"They've raised $10,000. They're going for $50,000. This event is going to help them kick it to their goal," said Wilk.

As a thank you, Wilkinson and Valentini made Eric and Dave honorary members of the Gustavus tennis team and invited them back for the college's summer camp.

(Copyright 2010 by KARE. All Rights Reserved.)

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