Ju­niors vie for rank­ing points

Western Suburbs Weekly - - Positions Vacant - By JON BAS­SETT

HEAVY rain could not dampen the hopes of 200 ju­nior ten­nis play­ers last week at the first tour­na­ment where they could accrue na­tional rank­ing points held at Cottes­loe Ten­nis Club for 20 years.

“It’s re­ally fun, great com­pe­ti­tion and ex­cit­ing,” Cottes­loe player Jes­sica Culley (11) said.

The in­au­gu­ral, bronze-level tour­na­ment, backed by Ten­nis WA, at­tracted en­trants aged from eight to 16.

Play­ing on both grass and hard courts, the young­sters com­peted in un­der-10, 12, 14 and 16 di­vi­sions, in ad­di­tion to mixed dou­bles for U16s.

Club coach David Culley said the sta­tus of the com­pe­ti­tion meant it at­tracted ju­niors from as far away as Ger­ald­ton and Esper­ance, in ad­di­tion to those from across the metropoli­tan area.

“It’s a statewide tour­na­ment, so it has a much wider and stronger field for the kids to play against,” Culley said.

Some com­peti­tors al­ready had opin­ions about the ex­am­ples set by se­nior Aus­tralian play­ers, in­clud­ing re­cent com­ments from Bernard Tomic that he was tired of the sport.

“Roger Fed­erer has been play­ing for 30 years, and Tomic has been play­ing just for 10. It’s a bit em­bar­rass­ing,” Max Weir (13), from Cottes­loe, said.

Af­ter one day, play was can­celled be­cause of rain and wind, and play­ers and of­fi­cials chose to in­stead sit in­side to watch the ac­tion at Wim­ble­don.

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie d471260

Max Weir, Abe Pren­diville and Jessie Culley.

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