Junior Tournament in Kirkland
The biggest thing I notice among all the players was the amount of hustle. So many points went 1 extra shot because of great work ethic. The most memorable shot of the night Finn was pushed deep in the court hitting a backhand with his opponent at the net. His opponent hit a great short volley and watched a certain winner. Finn had other ideas and tracked it down for a lob winner!
Carryn played her first tournament match against another girl playing her first tournament. It was a fun match with a lot of uncertainty and nerves by the parents on the sideline. Watching a child play their first match or their 1000th match it’s tougher on the parents than the players. Parents get to watch with angst knowing there is nothing they can do while the kids get to play. That’s what Carryn and her opponent did, they played great tennis!
Dominic played an amazing match moving his opponent around the court the entire night. It was fantastic to watch Dominic hit several strong topspin shots in a row with rallies regularly lasting 8 – 12 shots.
Bretta served very well in her match tonight, every serve had wonderful spin to the corners. This was another match that had long rallies with players moving all over the place. In a very close match topspin won out.
Reed signed up for the girls 8 & under division. Well maybe not, due to an illness his opponent had to withdraw from the tournament. Reed still came out to support his teammates and to play a 36 foot match with Carryn.
There are a few of things to learn from this tournament as a team.
1. Weird things happen, players withdraw and tournament directors tend to switch match times. It is very important that the tournament directors have accurate contact information to be able to let players know about schedule changes. Just as importantly the tournament directors don’t contact coaches, if your match time is changed or canceled please let a coach know about the change so we can change it on our schedule as well.
2. The results from a tournament and/or match does not reflect the value of a player. At the end of the month, season, or year will these results change your life? Probably not, the most important part is to continuing to develop your technical and tactical skills during these matches. A match lost using the proper technique and/or tactics is better than winning a match with incorrect technique and/or tactics. It’s not about being good right now; it’s about being great in the future.
3. If you have a chance to watch a teammate compete, take it. Everybody likes to have a fan base and it is likely you will learn something from the match. Being on the outside tennis looks easy, it’s just a matter of placing the ball in the open court. The tough part is getting into the proper position to hit the shot to the correct target, more consistently than your opponent. Sometimes the target that looks best is the toughest shot to hit. The more matches you watch the more those situations will stick out for you to incorporate in your own game.