Our extremely sought after trophy is named after Mr. Jimmy Van Alen, who has made countless contributions to the game. Van Alen was a national singles and doubles champion in court tennis, and his progressive thought process led him to make substantial changes in how tennis was scored. As founder of the National Lawn Tennis Hall of Fame in 1954, Van Alen was able to use the venue to introduce the Van Alen Streamlined Scoring System (VASSS), which turned into the tiebreak in 1965 (perhaps Van Alen’s greatest contribution to the sport), electric scoreboards, and night tennis.
Our story of the Pineapple starts when Christopher Columbus brought the pineapple, which originated in South America, back to Europe as one of the prizes obtained on his trip to the New World. In early settlements, the pineapple was traditionally given as a gift of friendship. Over time, colonial Innkeepers added the pineapple to their signs and bedposts carved with pineapples were a common sight at Inns throughout New England. The tradition continues and to this day hotels and service industries proudly display and use the pineapple as a symbol of hospitality. The Pineapple is a symbol of hospitality and prosperity, and has long been associated with Newport, the City by the Sea. For these reasons, we award our champions with this Newport symbol.
(Above: 2015 Singles Champion, Rajeev Ram from the United States, with the Van Alen Cup.
Below: 2015 Doubles Champions, Jonathan Marray of Great Britain & Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi of Pakistan, with the Pineapple Trophy)