Lots of tennis and other fun activities were on the agenda over the weekend as Romsey & Abbey Tennis Club welcomed two professional tennis players last Sunday for the Club’s Davis Cup Coaching Day.
Danny Sampford and Luke Milligan visited the Club to share their knowledge and experience by providing coaching sessions for both juniors and adults. Danny played singles and doubles on the ATP tour as well as playing for team GB in the Davis Cup from 1990 to 1995. He has also been Men's National Singles and three times the Doubles Champion before becoming an LTA National Coach, and now works with a British boys’ squad who have gone on to win National, ITF and European titles in singles and doubles. Luke was a junior GB National Champion and went on to play at Wimbledon and in the Davis Cup for Team GB. His best wins included victories against Jonas Bjorkman, Nicholas Lapentti and Byron Black. Since retiring, Luke has been with the LTA for 7 years as a National Coach and has worked with many of the up and coming young professionals including Laura Robson.
The day started with coaching for younger players aged 5 to 12 years, before moving up to older juniors. This was then followed by a match practice session and finished with a mixed adult drills session. After the coaching sessions, players got the chance to test out their serves with a speed gun before teaming up with the professional players in a series of tie break matches. Johnny Burridge and Ben Langdon, two of the Club’s junior squad players decided to play against the pro's to finish off. Despite some great points and non-returnable serves by the juniors, the pro's pulled off a victory, winning the tie break 7-4.
Romsey & Abbey has undergone a big transformation over the last year with brand new tennis courts and floodlights being installed at the club. These improved facilities have enabled the Club to expand its adult and junior coaching programmes, and set up a Community Satellite Tennis Club at Romsey School. The next stage in the Club’s development plan is to improve the clubhouse facilities, and fund-raising for that is ongoing. The Club is very grateful to Danny and Luke, who gave up their time for free to come and visit the club, and all proceeds taken from the day will go towards the Club’s fund for a new Clubhouse.
Romsey & Abbey will be taking part in the Great British Tennis Weekend on May17th and 18th. There will be lots of free tennis sessions on offer over the weekend for people of all ages to give tennis a try. If you would like to find out how to get involved please visit the Club’s website at www.ratc.org.uk for more information, or just come down to Romsey Sports Centre on the day. If you can’t make that weekend, there will be another opportunity on June 28th/29th.
Danny Sapsford, who runs Bright Ideas for Tennis and organises these fund raising/open days would like to run more events in Hampshire. If you think your Club would benefit from such an event in the future please contact him via email@example.com or www.brightideasfortennis.org.