Adult tennis coach­ing a win­ner

Selwyn and Ashburton Outlook - - AUTOZONE - ERIN TASKER

A tennis coach­ing pro­gramme for adults launched in Mid Can­ter­bury has al­ready ex­ceeded the ex­pec­ta­tions of the man be­hind it, af­ter only one week.

Run by Mid Can­ter­bury Tennis coach An­dre van Rooyen, the coach­ing takes place on a Tues­day and in­cludes a ladies brunch club in the morn­ings and an evening ses­sion.

Af­ter a suc­cess­ful first brunch club ses­sion last Tues­day, around 15 peo­ple turned out for the evening ses­sion, in­clud­ing four women who were be­gin­ners at a time when tennis among women Can­ter­bury-wide was on the de­cline, so that was ex­cit­ing, van Rooyen said.

‘‘I put some goals down a month or two ago when we planned it, and we have al­ready reached the goals I set, so I’m pretty ex­cited,’’ van Rooyen said.

Van Rooyen is be­ing as­sisted by one of his young up-and­com­ing coaches, lo­cal player Con­nor Bros­na­han, who took charge of the be­gin­ners group last Tues­day.

Van Rooyen said he was al­ready ex­pect­ing a cou­ple more play­ers in the groups this week, and there’s still space for more, par­tic­u­larly in the be­gin­ners group.

‘‘If it means I have to se­cure an­other coach, I will gladly do it,’’ he said.

Van Rooyen said he ran a sim­i­lar pro­gramme while he was liv­ing in Nel­son and it helped to build depth in the Nel­son club­scene, and he was hope­ful it would do the same in Mid Can­ter­bury. He said some pleay­ers may go on to play club tennis, while oth­ers may go on to play in one of Mid Can­ter­bury’s so­cial com­pe­ti­tions, like Wednesday night’s Twi­light Tennis or Thurs­day night’s Sun­set Dou­bles.

‘‘In Nel­son we got a lot of play­ers that hadn’t played in 15 or 20 years, and grew our B grade men’s teams from one to three teams. Our A grade went from three to four teams, so it was pretty ex­cit­ing to see more com­ing in,’’ he said.

Some of those tak­ing up the adult coach­ing op­por­tu­nity were some who were al­ready play­ing in the so­cial com­pe­ti­tions and who sim­ply wanted to brush up on their skills.

‘‘They of­ten just need a tweak, like a small grip change, and they can just have more fun out there,’’ van Rooyen said.

Van Rooyen said he was plan­ning on con­tin­u­ing with the adult coach­ing in term one next year, with a new in­take.

ERIN TASKER/STUFF

Sulekh Me­hta re­ceives some tennis tips from coach An­dre van Rooyen.

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