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Junior membership is growing very rapidly at Sudbury Tennis Club

PUBLISHED: 11:12 14 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:12 14 March 2017

Junior members at Sudbury Tennis Club with new head coach Sheetal Pandya

Junior members at Sudbury Tennis Club with new head coach Sheetal Pandya

Archant

Budding sports children are being urged to join Sudbury Tennis Club’s junior division after a highly successful first four years, which has seen the number of young people at the club grow from single figures to more than 100.

The club introduced a new junior section in February, 2013, offering Lawn Tennis Association (LTA)-accredited coaching to tennis tots as young as four years old.

“In those first few weeks we had six young players,” said Ronnie Hall, the junior co-ordinator.

“Remarkably, of those first six players, three have been taken into the County programme, showing how rewarding it is to start children playing at an early age.”

The LTA scheme is a pathway through different types of balls for different age groups. The youngest from four to eight years old, start playing with soft red balls, using half-courts and mini-nets.

They then progress at aged eight to a slightly harder orange ball, then onto another harder green ball, before playing with hard yellow balls in the full-size game.

Last year, the club invested in a new synthetic-clay surface at its site on Quay Lane in Sudbury.

The new playing surface has proved to be a success with both juniors and adult members of the club.

Hall explained: “The new courts have been so beneficial for the juniors as the balls bounce lower and at a slower pace than on our previous hard tarmac courts, which gives small people more time to learn better strokes to prepare them for the fast, full-size game.

“The scheme has been so successful that last season we played two junior boys of 12 and 14 years in our men’s first team.”

Also, at the end of last season, Sudbury Tennis Club introduced a new head coach, Sheetal Pandya, who is moving the programme forward with Matt Perry, his assistant coach.

Hall added: “We have a lovely set up at the club and I am delighted to report that that at the end of last year our junior numbers had increased from those first six kids to over 100 attending coaching.”

For more information on tennis coaching at Sudbury, visit the club website www.sudbury-tennisclub.co.uk

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