Moller’s sights on Melbourne
Every January, Greg Moller gets to carry out his ultimate tennis fantasy.
The Titahi Bay Tennis Club volunteer and coach is gearing up for his fifth stint as a photographer for New Zealand Tennis at the Australian Open. He will be in Melbourne from January 8 till February 5 – the only annual leave he will take from his job at Porirua’s KMart in 2014.
He pays his own airfare and accommodation – he will stay at a cheap backpackers in Melbourne’s city centre – and Tennis New Zealand endorse his media accreditation.
He wants to snap as many New Zealanders as possible in action, so Marina Erakovic will get plenty of attention.
‘‘While it’ll be great to see the big names on centre court, my focus will be the Kiwis. So if Marina’s on court 17, that’s where I’ll go.’’
Moller is not a professional photographer. He gratefully picks up Nikon lenses and tripods from the company’s ‘‘sheds’’ at the open.
He said there was excellent camaraderie among the photographers and that he gets tips aplenty as he strives to get players’ expressions, profiles and ‘‘racquet on ball’’ shots for the Tennis New Zealand website.
His day starts at 8am and he is often home after 1am. Moller might then spend an hour or two downloading the thousands of images he has collected during his day. And he loves every minute. ‘‘This is my passion. I love ten- nis and photography and can’t wait for January. I’ve got full access to every part of Rod Laver Arena and the rest of the complex and it’s an incredible few weeks.
‘‘Getting close up is what it’s all about.’’
His favourite player is Roger Federer because of his technical brilliance. The best match he’s witnessed is the 2013 final, a fivehour marathon in which Novak Djokovic triumphed over Andy Murray.
‘‘Sometimes you’re standing in an inside area, watching a match on the TVs, and next thing there’s a top 10 player standing next to you, watching it as well. I think, ‘I’m from Porirua and work at KMart – this is amazing’.’’
Tennis tragic: Tennis and photography are Greg Moller’s two biggest passions, so spending his own time and money to be a photographer at the Australian Open ticks a lot of boxes.