IPROMISE student story #5

Why I am passionate about tennis by Sheanna MUTTHUMANI Yr 8

I started playing tennis when I was 3.5 years old after I participated in a Chinese New Year tennis camp at the HKCC and showed a liking for the sport.  My first coach's name was Harrison Ford and I trained with him at the HKCC until he left HK. I then moved to play at the Hong Kong Tennis Center under the guidance of Andreas Battad former Davis Cup player- I was 5 years old at the time. At the age of 7, I moved to train with the  Hong Kong Tennis Association.  In September 2017 I was selected for the National Training Squad (NTS), where I continue to train to date.

I practise pretty much every day of the week on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. I train with NTS for 3 hours straight after school. On Saturdays my team and I have the benefit of training at the Hong Kong Sports Institute in Sha Tin. I always enjoy the opportunity to play on the clay courts. On Friday I go to my private coach for 2 hours after school, same on Sunday. On Wednesdays, I sometimes

Play from 7-8 am or 9-10 am depending on what time I start school.

My family are my biggest supporters, supporting me during every match no matter I win or lose. My parent and grandparents attend all my matches. When ever they are in the country. When I play in Perth, other members of my family come and support me. Since I started travelling and playing tournaments overseas, one or even both of my parents try and come with me. My coaches are also another big part of my support team as without them I wouldn't accomplish what I have last year. Their words of encouragement during pre-match talks and even sometimes through Whatsapp when I am travelling, are a great source of motivation and their confidence in me helps me push myself to achieve my goal. My tennis friends provide me with incredible support as we all strive to give of our best at every match. They also always know what I am going through when I win or lose and the same for them.

I currently represent Hong kong at  overseas tournaments but I hope to play for Hong Kong in Jr Davis Cup one day. I also hope to play many International Tennis Federation and maybe some WTA tournaments, but if not I hope to go to a tennis university and play for them.

Here in Secondary at FIS all students strive to use/be IPROMISE- Inquirers, Principled, Risk-takers, Open minded, MIndful, Innovative, Smart and Empathetic. I'll explain now how IPROMISE helps me not only as a person but as an athlete.

  • PRINCIPLED- When playing sport especially tennis you have to play with sportsmanship, honesty and fairness. These things are helpful in life and not only in sport.
  • RISK-TAKERS- We all have our game styles in tennis but taking risks to hit different shots or shots that you don't normally hit at crucial points of the match is hard.
  • OPEN-MINDED- As I said before we all have our different game styles which means sometimes our opponent might not play the way you like therefore you must be open-minded and find a solution.
  • MINDFUL- Tennis is a stressful sport because it's really easy to make mistakes and so we might get angry but we have to be mindful about who is watching us and if we are acting appropriately.
  • INNOVATIVE- Tennis is a sport where you hit a ball and chase the ball to hit it back us as players need to we need to come up with were you want to hit the ball, with what speed and depth. Sometimes it might not work so we have to come up with other solutions to try and win.
  • EMPATHETIC- Winning is something we all love, but in tennis, there is always one winner and one loser at the end of a match. At the end of the match, we must shake our opponents hand if you lose you can't just storm off you must show your appreciation for playing the match. On the other hand, when you win you don't go around celebrating really loud and big you would normally show thanks to your opponent and tell them they played well whether they thought it or not.

I am very lucky to have found a passion for tennis, I have had my ups and downs and I will continue to, tennis has taught me a lot of things good for life. It is the best thing in the world for me.