Here’s our second featured post from Head Coach at the Club, CJ on his experiences and observations from the world of tennis – Do you agree with Chris?:
“Following on from my previous post last week, at a recent U8 inter-club match the parent/captain complained heavily about her 10 year old daughter who had been given the opportunity to represent her club in an U14 match. Now unfortunately in the UK an U10 player can not play up into the U14’s therefore there was no ‘recognition’ in the way of rating or ranking points.
“The parent saw no benefit to her daughter having played this match. My colleague turned to her and said surely the recognition was in the fact she played the match. The parent then refused to continue the conversation. As I said previously NO ONE these days seems to play a tennis match to get better, test themselves or experiment.
“This then filters down into the players not wanting to play adult club team matches, county matches or even practice matches as they see NO RECOGNITION in the way of R & R points.
“Now I appreciate that things move on, but when I was younger I would want to play anyone in a match and even used to beg to get invited to County PRACTICE!! This was an excellent opportunity to play with older and wiser players. In fact the most competitive tennis I ever played was with 3 very, very good older guys once a week (doubles). I learnt so much about how to compete. Therefore all I see is juniors playing tennis in coach led sessions and stupid and meaningless matches that DO NOT help players develop correctly. Now I appreciate that this is a HUGE problem globally, but if more people don’t start educating parents and younger coaches, this problem will only get worse.”