Tag Archives: ITF

MC a finalist in NZ

10 Oct
For those who know me well, you’d understand that this page is not meant to be a vehicle for chest beating. However sometimes you just need to share the good news. Just got a call from Jamie Parrott Tennis (JPT) International player MC straight off the court from his ITF 18/Under singles semi final in New Zealand.

Michael, a first time semi finalist has gone one better today, beating the top seed Kirrapal Pannu – a player who beat Michael 6 weeks ago in Fiji. MC learnt a lot from that match and we have been working on his aggressiveness and ability to “finish what he started”. Today he did it. Fighting back from a set down to win 6/7, 6/4, 6/2.

Here’s hoping for a photo tomorrow night of MC holding the silverware just like Stan the Man Stanislas Wawrinka here with the 2014 Australian Open trophy.

Great job MC!
The PRO
Photo: For those who know me well, you'd understand that this page is not meant to be a vehicle for chest beating. However sometimes you just need to share the good news. Just got a call from JPT International player MC straight off the court from his ITF semi final in New Zealand.
Michael, a first time semi finalist has gone one better today, beating the top seed - and a player who beat Michael 6 weeks ago in Fiji. MC learnt a lot from that match and we have been working on his aggressiveness and ability to "finish what he started". Today he did it. Fighting back from a set down to win 6/7, 6/4, 6/2. 
Here's hoping for a photo tomorrow night of MC holding the silverware just like Stan the Man Stanislas Wawrinka here with the 2014 Australian Open trophy.
Great job MC!

 

US women. Out of the blue..

2 Jun

Serena Williams came into the final with a 12-0 clay court record on the year, losing just one set.

While US women’s tennis has, on the surface, looked healthy as far back as one cares to think, it has been riding on the dominance of Serena Williams. With a little help from sister Venus over the past 11 years, the “sisters” have amassed 23 Grand slam singles titles between them, Serena with an astounding tour win-loss % of .839 and Venus .800. They have battled every challenger: from Russia, Czech Republic, France, Serbia, China and even Belgium and Denmark have thrown up contenders. All the time they must have been looking in the rear view mirror wondering when, or even if, the cavalry would arrive. Where are the next line of US female players?

Perhaps they can breathe a little easier, after a breakthrough semi-final result for Sloane Stephens at the 2013 Australian Open, including a win over Serena herself. Stephens today joined Serena, Bettina Mattek-Sands and Jamie Hampton in the 4th round of the French Open. Hampton’s was a solid straight set win over WTA#7 Petra Kvitova. Following closely on their heels are improved WTA tour players Melanie Oudin, Christina McHale and Lauren Davis – all under 23 years of age.

And next in line. The prodigious junior talent, lefty, Taylor Townsend. Townsend just 17, won the 2012 Australian Open Junior Girls Singles and is the first US girl to hold the year end world #ITF junior ranking since 1982.

Taylor Townsend tennis.jpg

Taylor Townsend unleashes a forehand

While Serena is in no hurry to abdicate the throne it appears there are now likely candidates pressing their claims. Watch out for Taylor Townsend’s transition through to the senior tour. Perhaps the real question to ask of US tennis: where are the American men?

The PRO

Link

Nick Kyrgios. ready to shine.

28 May

Nick Kyrgios. ready to shine.

Great chat with a happy George Kyrgios on Melbourne Radio 3AW this morning. George sat up all night watching the computer update live scores as his son, ITF world #1 junior, Nick Kyrgios triumphed over the experienced Radek Stepanek (ATP #57) at Roland Garros in his first Grand Slam main draw match at the French Open.

Why aren’t all tennis parent’s this level-headed and humble?!

The PRO.

A pleasant surprise.

12 Feb

I took a phone call the other day – and it was from a “past” player I used to coach wanting to catch up for a coffee. This is one of the great joys of teaching and mentoring young players. They grow up and often come back and look you up. We sat and reminisced.

Simon won the National Grasscourts and Claycourts in the same year. He was a short, strong lefty with a passion for hard work and a competitive streak that was borne through his love of Aussie Rules football and cricket. He was the youngest in a family of over achievers – doctors and lawyers one and all.  To get Simon to travel and play was a real challenge as he loved his home town, his team sports, his family and his mates. When we did venture overseas for a swing of ITF junior events Simon showed his grit and class on clay and extreme heat with consecutive semi final and quarter finals in places as far flung as Greece, Egypt and Cyprus.

 

There were some classy juniors on that trip – he ran into current ATP tour top 100 players Dudi Sela, Tamiraz Gabashivili and Marcos Baghdatis and managed wins against 2 of them. In a memorable match in 42 degree heat in Giza, Egypt, Simon was getting the very rough end of some horrendous line calls from a local player. I was charting the match and had seen enough so went in search of the referee. He was sitting in the air conditioned club room, drinking coke and definitely not in the slightest bit interested in intervening in anything to do with going outside, especially where a local player was concerned. Consequently I dragged a reluctant and over weight ref out to the court, where he proceeded to give my player a warning and code violation and I got a dressing down on tennis etiquette “Egypt” style. Somewhere in the midst of all this my much loved Guy Laroche wrist watch disappeared. It can be a steep learning curve on the ITF junior circuit.

Like a lot of Aussie juniors, Simon lost his way somewhere between 18 and 20. He kept playing footy, joined a cricket club and didn’t venture far from home. And now. Well he finally did travel – He’s living in London, has been for 5 years now, and is currently one of the top cricket player agents going around. Just shows all that training, discipline and time management skills learnt as a junior tennis player come in handy in so many ways.

The PRO.

Aussie junior Luke Saville secures 2nd junior slam title

29 Jan

Aussie junior Luke Saville serves up a storm.

Luke Saville, the 17 year old right hander from Adelaide, who looks as though he would be more comfortable on a beach with a surfboard tucked under his arm, won the Australian Open boys junior singles title yesterday. He defeated Canada’s Filip Peliwo 6/3 5/7 6/4.

In what must have been a huge thrill for the players, the boys singles was played as the warm-up match on Rod Laver Arena prior to the women’s singles final. It is extremely unusual for the juniors to play on the main arena – and does not happen at all at either Wimbledon and the US Open. A key staffer with the ITF recalled a French Open junior final being played on the Stadium court at Roland Garros the year Richard Gasquet was in the final.

Saville and Peliwo have something of a junior rivalry going on with Peliwo winning the previous battle in another tight 3 set match just last week in the lead-up event for the juniors down at Traralgon. Saville had match points in that one – but could not convert, so this victory was sweet revenge. Luke Saville completes a trifecta of recent winners of the boys singles for the home nation. Brydan Klein (2007) and Bernard Tomic (2008) were the most recent winners.

Saville is the current number 1 world ranked junior boy and also is the current Wimbledon junior singles title holder. He hopes to clean up in a couple more junior slams this year whilst also embarking on a breakthrough year on the mens ATP tour. He currently is ranked around 1200 on the ATP computer. Saville’s goal is to finish 2012 inside the top 400 on the ATP mens computer. He is one to watch.

The PRO.

Aussie update – the young guns

22 Jan

The Australian Open gives the opportunity to our young players to fight for a wildcard into the main draw – this has been the launching pad for many players careers. This year the wildcard play-off was won by Marinko Matosevic in the mens and Ashleigh Barty in the womens. A great effort especially by Ash as she is still only 15. Others to earn wildcards were Greg Jones, James Duckworth, Ben Mitchell…. oh and another “young” gun – Lleyton Hewitt. Lleyton had to rely on a wildcard following his injury plagued 18 months that has seen his ranking drop from top 20 to his current ranking of 189.

And in the second week of the Australian Open The Pro will be following the fortunes of our junior players in the AO junior boys and girls singles. Players to look out for include Bernard Tomic’s little sister Sara – who is just 14,, but shows a great deal of promise, Storm Sanders, Belinda Woolcock, Georgiana Ruhrig and in the boys – current ITF world number 1 – Australia’s Luke Saville, Chris Guccione’s nephew – Daniel Guccione, Andrew Harris, Nick Kyrgios  and others.

See you out at the open. The Pro.