Belmont Racquets hosts young Japanese Tennis playersEight of Japan’s shining young tennis players flew in last week to train with Belmont Racquets’ resident coach, Mark Nielsen for ten days. Smash Tennis and Belmont Racquets were thrilled to host the boys aged 10 to 12 and their coach from Fujisawa. All were billeted into local families for that extra taste of kiwi lifestyle.
Their stay was jam-packed with tennis, but this was nothing new for these juniors. Back home they train three hours a day, six days a week and regularly play in tournaments. While here they challenged top juniors from Belmont and other local clubs including Ngataringa and Milford. Competitive play with Auckland’s Regional Performance Programme players lead by Head Coach James Greenhalgh over at Scarbro Tennis Centre was another highlight.
Joel Cattell (14) from Belmont Racquets was astounded at the Japanese talent, “Those little boys have huge power as well as amazing strategy for their age. They’re deadly!”
Although the Japanese players spoke almost no English, their shared love of the sport created an instant bond with their kiwi counterparts. The boys had a fantastic time on and off court and were reluctant to leave. Japanese coach Ryo feels it’s the start of a great relationship and would like to make this an annual visit.