Cork Tennis Blog

Welcome to the Cork Tennis Blog.

This blog will, hopefully, keep you up to date on the tennis scene in Cork, both socially and competitively. Whether you are new to the game or an experienced player I hope you find the information and posts here, useful and interesting.

You can contact me by email at rob@racketrestringing.ie

As well as local tennis news, there are also some very good articles written by local players and I am always looking for people to contribute to the blog, so don't be shy.

Please also feel free to comment on individual posts, or alternatively through the comment box on the right of the blog. I hope you enjoy reading through the blog and that it was of some use to you.

Enjoy your game, Rob

Rob's Racketrestringing

Friday, February 26, 2010

An Article written for Cork Blog by Irish Davis Cup Player Conor Niland.

The following is an article written by Conor for the Cork Blog, it gives us an insight into life as a pro player and highlights what young players can expect if they would like to pursue a career as a professional player.
I would like to thank Conor for his time in doing this piece for my blog and wish him every success for the years ahead.

"I have been playing professional tennis since 2006, as well as playing for a year in 2001, and have found it be an enjoyable and quite challenging existence. As one of the few truly global sports, the standard of professional men's tennis is very high. There are 55 countries represented in the world's top 300. Golf, often considered an equally global sport, has 28 nationalities in its top 300; almost exactly half.


A significant amount of travel is one of the main things to contend with as a pro player. While many would like the idea of extensive travel, the reality of this life is airport terminals and near-permanent jetlag. If you asked a player if they could change one thing about the pro tour, they would invariably say, "Less travel." The travel demands grow as your ranking improves. Tournaments at the ITF Futures level (ranking 1800-300) are played in circuits of three or four weeks in one particular country. The ATP Challenger (300-100) and ATP World Tour (100-1) are not organised like this, and at this level it is rare to play three consecutive weeks in one country. I have played five tournaments so far this year, and they were in four quite disparate countries: UAE (Doha), Australia, Russia, and France. Doha is one of the few tournaments on before the Australian Open, and there are no events in Australia after the Open. My only option was to fly back to tournaments in Europe, which makes for an expensive start to the year.

I receive some funding from the Irish Sports Council and welcome help from Fitzwilliam LTC, but the rest comes from my parents and whatever prizemoney I can earn. Travelling with a coach is a further expense; I paid for Conor Taylor from the BNP Paribas National Academy in DCU to come with me to Russia, but I travelled alone to the four other tournaments. A lot of national federations would pay for a coach to travel with their top players, but this is not available to us in Ireland.

I will play approximately thirty tournaments this year, and will pay for a coach to travel with me as much as I can. A lot of training is done at tournaments, as we spend so much time on the road. This is another reason why travel with a coach is so beneficial. I generally play three or four tournaments followed by one or two weeks at home. I train in DCU with Tennis Ireland coaches Garry Cahill and Conor Taylor. I work a lot on physical fitness, and try to make improvements to my technique and gamestyle.

There can be a lot of ups and downs as a professional tennis player. Winning is a great feeling, and playing a great match at Davis Cup, in front of a crowd, or at a Grand Slam is very special. You compete almost every week, however, and you have to win five straight matches against very good players to get through the tournament without a loss. Even if you manage to win a tournament, there will be somebody else to play the following Monday. There are only a handful of players in the world who regularly win professional tournaments. That is why you cannot get too excited or too disappointed based on results, though losing should never feel good! You just have to make sure you are preparing and competing as well as you can, and keep pushing on. Sometimes you have to book a flight to a tournament directly after a very tough loss, and play a first round in another country two days later. So dwelling too much on a win or a loss is not a good idea.

I think there are three things that are essential to making it as a professional player; you need to be a good athlete, have consistently good coaching & competition from a young age, and of course be a hard worker. Many of the top 100 players in the men's game are European, and most of those from Western Europe. This should be good news for Irish players. There is a myth that professional tennis is full of players from very tough circumstances in Eastern Europe, who are just more committed than anyone else. This is not the case - the top level of men's tennis is dominated by players from regular backgounds in Germany, France, Spain and America, the sons of dentists and accountants and teachers. So you shouldn't be intimidated by thinking others want it more than you because of where they are from. Commitment and motivation are vital, but people are driven in all sorts of ways. There is no doubt women's tennis is dominated by Eastern European players, though I think for reasons that don't begin and end with 'hunger'.

Professional tennis can be a challenging lifestyle, but the rewards for success are very high. Playing each year in front of Irish supporters in Melbourne, Paris, London and New York would definitely be worth travelling for."

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

An Interview with Local Cork player and coach, Liam O Brien.

Liam is the current Interpro captain of the Munster Senior and U-18 teams.
He is a playing member of the Munster Vets O-45 team and has represented Munster Seniors for an amazing 17 years.
He has recently being selected to play in the World Team Championships in Mexico and still finds time to coach.
The following is an interview Liam did for the blog. (Read more)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Lakewood Tennis Club Website Update

Lakewood Tennis Club are constantly working to improve things for their members and are now in the process of updating their website (http://www.lakewoodtennisclub.ie/) to help keep their members informed.
Check it out and watch this space for further news from Lakewood.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Carrigaline Spring Open Doubles Coming Soon

The annual Spring Open Doubles Tournament for Grades 5, 6 and 7 combined will commence on Saturday 20th March 2010 with the finals being held on Saturday 27th March 2010.
There will be three events, Ladies Doubles, Mens Doubles and Mixed Doubles.
There will be a plate in each event.

Entry forms are now available to download from the website and are also available in the Clubhouse.
Entries may either be posted or emailed to Brian Walsh.
Contact details are on the Entry Form.
Closing date is Monday 15th March 2010 at 13.00 hours.

The draw will take place in the Clubhouse on Monday 15th March 2010 at 20.00 hours.
Fixtures will be available online through Tennis Ireland’s Tournament Software.
A link from this website to the Tennis Ireland Tournament Website will be provided once the draw is completed.

Attention members of Ballinlough Tennis Club

Monday February 22nd 2010


ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING of
BALLINLOUGH TENNIS CLUB
at
8.00 p.m. in the CLUBHOUSE.

All Members Welcome

Cork Teams doing well in Winter League

The Winter League is a very popular team competition run by the Munster Branch over the winter period.  It is run over all grades and well represented in all.
Here is an update on the competition so far: Cork Teams in Black

Grade 2: Semi Finals

Nenagh V Sundays Well
St. Annes V Rushbrooke.

Grade 3: Quarter Finals

Crosshaven A V winner of Bandon v Lakewood
Limerick Lawn V winner of Ballinlough v Sundays Well

Grade 4: Last 16

Rushbrooke A V Larkspur Cashel
Carrigaline A V Crosshaven A
Carrigaline B V Rushbrooke B
Sundays Well B V Ballinlough B

Kinsale B and Ballinlough A Bye

Grade 5: Last 16

Kinsale A V Mallow
Bandon B V Crosshaven
Castleview V Sundays Well B
Nenagh A V Lower Aghada B
Ballypatrick V Bandon A

Grade 6: Last 16
Crosshaven A V Runner Up Group 4


Larkspur Cashel V Sundays Well A
Crosshaven B V Bandon
Quarter Finals
Ennis A V Ballinlough A
Ennis B V Sundays Well B

Friday, February 19, 2010

Feedback Welcome

Hi all,

Would love feedback from you all.  If there is anything you would like to see added or any questions you might have you can email me at rob_leahy@yahoo.co.uk

If you are a club or a coach and would like to advertise something or promote yourself let me know.
Rob

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Interview with Emma Murphy - Irish Fed Cup Player

The following is a piece by Emma Murphy, Irish Fed Cup Player and graduate of San Diego University.

Tennis in the USA
Imagine waking up every morning, winter, spring or fall and seeing the sun splitting the stones. As tennis players when the sun is shining all we want to do is grab our rackets and grind in the warmth of the sun. This was my feeling every day when I lived and trained in San Diego, California.

I first arrived in San Diego when I was 18 on a scholarship for 4 years.
Read on.....

Monday, February 15, 2010

Update from Rushbrooke Tennis Club for the start of their season

RUSHBROOKE LAWN TENNIS AND CROQUET CLUB NEWS
FEB/MARCH/ APRIL ‘10

AFTER THE LONG AND COLD WINTER BREAK, TENNIS ACTIVITIES
COME OUT OF HIBERNATION AND THE SOUND OF BALLS BEEN HIT, ANGUISHED CRYS OF “out” ONCE AGAIN GRACE THE LAWNS OF RUSHBROOKE.


THE FAMOUS TRIBES TOURNAMENT IS IN FULL SWING AND THE SEMI FINALS WILL BE PLAYED

ON THE WEEK END 19/20TH FEBRUARY, WITH THE FINALS ON SATURDAY 27TH  AT 7 AND 830 PM FOLLOWED BY PRESENTATION AND SOCIAL ACTIVITIES, TO WHICH ALL MEMBERS AND FRIENDS ARE WELCOME.

MARCH 17TH SEES A NEW MEMBERS DAY TAKING PLACE IN THE AFTERNOON
AT 4PM, AND ALL NEW AND PROSPECTIVE MEMBERS ARE WELCOME.

CLUB OFFICERS AND CLUB COACHES WILL BE IN ATTENDANCE TO OFFER GUIDANCE
ON STARTING “8THS”, COACHING, SOCIAL ACTIVITIES AND COURT BOOKING SYSTEM.

THE FIRST OPEN TOURNAMENT OF THE SEASON TAKES PLACE IN RUSHBROOKE,

“THE CHAMPIONSHIPS OF COUNTY CORK”
FROM 1ST APRIL – 5TH APRIL 2010.
ENTRIES WILL BE TAKEN ON LINE, JMFCONNOLLY@HOTMAIL.COM
OR BY TEXT TO 0851623983
OR BY PHONE TO 0214811451, 730PM – 930PM, MONDAY TO THURSDAY,
WITH CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES, FRIDAY 26TH MARCH 830PM.
DRAW AND PLAYING SCHEDULE FOR THE FIRST ROUNDS WILL BE PUBLISHED
ON MONDAY 29TH MARCH.
“IT IS PLAYERS RESPONSIBILITY TO ESTABLISH WHAT TIME THEY ARE PLAYING!”

MARCH ALSO SEES THE NATIONAL UNDER 12 RANKING TOURNAMENT
TAKING PLACE IN RUSHBROOKE ON FRIDAY 26TH – SUNDAY 28TH MARCH.

PLAY STARTS AT 1PM ON FRIDAY, 10AM ON SATURDAY AND SUNDAY.
COME ALONG AND SEE THE BEST YOUNG JUNIORS PLAY.

WE IN RUSHBROOKE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU AT THESE EVENTS, AND

THROUGHOUT THE SEASON. WATCH THIS SPACE FOR FURTHER NEWS.

BARRY CONNOLLY, TENNIS CAPTAIN, RLTCC.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Size Up Your Opposition - Article by Nick Bollettieri.

The following is an article I came across recently and I think it is an area of the game that is not focused on enough now a days.


Most juniors are obsessed with how hard they can hit the ball and aren't interested in learning how to wina match. If Plan A fails, what's Plan B? More often than not, there is no Plan B. This applies to players of all grades.

This article was written by Nick Bollettieri, founder of Bollettieri Tennis Academy and coach to nine No.1 players over the years.

"One of the most important skills any tennis player can have is the ability to size up their opponent quickly and easily. Often a player will face someone they have never played before or have never seen play before. Knowing how to read their opponent, starting at the warm up...... Read full article

Friday, February 12, 2010

Davis Cup - Ireland V Turkey

Tennis fans here's your chance to watch Ireland's best in action. Fresh from their Australian Open exploits, Louk Sorensen and Conor Niland joined by Barry King and James McGee take on Turkey with the winners probably getting to play Great Britain. This match takes place in Fitzwilliam from March 5th to March 7th.
Hope to see you there.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Cork player Paul Fitzgerald on life in the States

Paul left Cork as Irish No.1 u/18 and has held his own in the college scene with a very good record in both singles and doubles.

"Well it all started in a junior college in Tifton, Georgia and I was ranked 3 in the nation in junior college. I played the national fall tournament in my first year"...... Read more