Friday, 5 December 2014


I saw another kid play in Perth in 1985 who was also a remarkably gifted tennis player, Jamie Holmes. From Victoria I believe, Holmes partnered Kilderry in doubles in another junior championship. Now from memory in this particular tournament Holmes beat Kilderry easily in the final of the boys 14's, 6-2, 6-2, almost certain of the score.
What was so bizarre about this win was that Holmes was also only 12 years old at the time. Most 14 year old's struggled to beat Kilderry, even some 16 year old's so for a 12 year old to do so and with such ease was rather outrageous. 
Kilderry and Holmes won the doubles so easily it was ridiculous. Watching kids play with that sort of ability was entertaining and these two always played up at least one age group, sometimes two. They were simply way too good in their actual age group. Their shot selection at age  12 was remarkable to say the least.
These two along with Sterzl who I was lucky enough to play were amongst the best kids in Australia for their age, all from different States. Kilderry was from Perth, Sterzl from Adelaide and I believe Holmes was from Victoria, no relation to my coach Peter Holmes.
My last tournament in Western Australia before I headed to Queensland was a junior tournament at the Reabold Tennis Club in Floreat, Perth. I made the last 16 of the boys 16 age group and the last 8 of the Boys 18's.
I remember my win over Marcus Keizer in the round of 16, my Fremantle conqueror. I won 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 but I would have given that back to have the Fremantle Championship, such is life.
I lost in the quarter's against a giant by the name of Eugene Simkovic who owned a missile for a serve. He beat me comfortably 4 and 1, tough to get enough serves back to beat guys like Eugene.
Back in the 80's we had State rankings that were pretty easy to look up, now days it seems there are just Australian Rankings, a bit harder to work out. With points accumulated in the boys 16's age group I left Western Australia with a ranking of 7. 
I am uncertain of the boys 18's age group but I had made a semi plus a quarter in the space of a few months so I suppose I had a ranking of something. I wasn't that obsessed with a ranking as some were and are now but it gave an indication that you were matching it with some good players.
My Parents thought perhaps full time tennis training in Queensland would get my tennis obsession fulfilled one way or the other. That's where I headed as a 16 year old, Brisbane, the Sunshine Capital of Australia to hit tennis balls up to 6 hours a day.
No point in being at school any longer if I left most lunch times to go play tennis.......
Chapter 14, Brisbane, on it's way....

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