Make us your homepage

The Coker family at home in Houston. The kids stayed in Houston as the parents flew Down Under.
If you think that nobody actually ends up winning these sweepstakes - well the Coker's are proof to the contrary. Kevin and his wife Nisha won the Aussie Sweepstakes last year and will be blogging about their adventure Down Under.

Click here to register to win a trip to the '09 Australian Open

January 17, 2008
Tennis Channel at The Coker's

I can't place a finger on when the tennis transition occurred in our household. It might have happened overnight on the heels of the phone call from Neil from Tennis Channel, notifying us that we had won the Aussie Mania Sweepstakes. That could be considered by some to be a little superficial, so I propose other scenarios that have since influenced the sports flavors in the Coker house. It could have been our time in Sydney, relaxing with the views of Circle Quay and the Opera House outside of our hotel room, to unwinding after a tough day at the McWilliam's VIP winery tour with televised tennis tournaments on the TV day and night. What I consider the leading culprit and catalyst responsible for moving Tennis Channel up on my favorites list, was actually watching the live matches featuring Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Venus Williams at the Australian Open in Melbourne. That is a tough call, it could be all of the above, a perfect storm, so to speak.

With this revelation, a paradigm shift has taken place in the Coker household where the reigning sports platforms were all football and baseball. When I say reigning, I mean we have a dedicated sports television in the house that has forbidden access to Nick, Cartoon Channel and Food Network on every Saturday, Sunday and Monday Night. College, Pro and high school football for us! No exceptions unless there is a random Red Sox or Astros game being televised in October (more so the Sox in offense Houston). All that has changed now - names like Federer, Roddick, Williams, Henin and Nadal have found their way into our conversations. During our trip back from Melbourne, I found myself wondering who would be on the court today at the AO and how soon we could get home to tune in to Tennis Channel's latest updates and schedules for this holiday weekend. I have now realized that we are tennis converts although I can't guarantee that we will be picking up any racquets soon. I do know that there will be Tennis Channel on my favorites list and the sounds of heated volleys reverberating off the walls at Cottonwood Farmhouse. I could think of worse habits to take up and since my wife has the tennis bug too, at least I have a partner in crime.

It is the 17th and we have finished our international journey back home and are now in LAX waiting for our return flight to Houston. My only suggestion for the next sweepstakes is that it provides tickets for the entire tournament, including the championship. I am not sure how many people could actually leave their lives in the U.S. for that long, I don't think we could, but it would be nice to try at least.

After all is said and done, I have to say that we would do it all over again, without hesitation. We would like to take this time to give our heartfelt thanks to Neil, Tennis Channel and sponsors for making our trip such a wonderful experience. We were fortunate to meet Neil in Melbourne for lunch and at Melbourne Park for photos. He personally saw to it that all of our accommodations, travel plans and needs were met during our Tennis Channel trip to the Australian Open. Thanks again from The Coker's.

Good luck to all of you entering the 2009 Heating Up Down Under Sweepstakes, you are in for the time of your lives! Tell a friend or two or twenty!

-Thanks for reading

The Coker's 

Texans Loose in Melbourne l Who's #1? l The Wife Speaks l Time for Tennis l Dinner at the Rocks l McWilliams Winery Tour l Texas to Sydney


  1. R.J. (1/16/2008 3:59:58 PM) 

    Hey Coker's, what a trip of a life time. Just wondering on how much the IRS taxes set you back for winning this (free) trip. Looks like you had a great time. R.J.

  2. Lisa Howell (1/15/2008 6:02:40 PM) 

    Hey guys! Lovin' the pics that are posted. We're just hangin' out in this rainy Texas weather. Hope things are great where you are. I keep checking back daily to see what's going on with you. Have fun! Hope to see you when you return.

  3. Ron (1/15/2008 4:46:40 PM) 

    Congrats!!! I hope ya'll enjoy your time together in such a wonderful place! I'd love to be down under ejoying the weather and the tennis. However, I'm sittin here cold in Ohio keeping track of the open online and on TV. Remember to enjoy every moment! Have a good one!!! :-)

  4. Mike McIntyre (1/15/2008 1:53:24 AM) 

    Nisha, does this mean you will want the boys to start taking the tennis lessons now at Time Well Spent. This might inspire them. I know you guys are having a great time, I envy you. It's been a little quieter without the boys but I know they are having fun with Grandma. I hope they have had a chance to watch some of the great matches on TV and if they have then they have been watching the crowds hoping for a glimps of you. Have fun, be safe and we will see you soon.

  5. shelby jo (1/14/2008 9:22:37 PM) 

    yayyyyy!!! ....i saw this and was like yayyyy our people!!!!! ....hahaha :) thats so coolll!!!! that yalll are there!!! ....:) :) :) :) :) :) :) hahahaha im so exciteddd!!! i not even there!!!! :) ....well i hope yalll have funn!! :) :) :)

Post Comments

User comments may be used on television and other Tennis Channel media platforms. Comments that include profanity, or personal attacks, or antisocial behavior such as "spamming" or "trolling," or other inappropriate comments or material will be removed from this site. Tennis Channel will take steps to block users who violate any of Tennis Channel�s terms of use or privacy policy. You are fully responsible for the content that you post.