I read the local paper today, interesting sports round up, there was a junior tennis tournament last weekend at the home of The Albany Open, The Emu Point Tennis Club, the region's best tennis venue. Strange write up however it was to be expected, the game is changing.
This year it apparently had a close finish in a boys age group that even went to a count back, sounds like a good day's tennis. What I was a bit uncertain of was the way in which the local newspaper described the outcome of that particular age group.
Apparently 'illness' played a part, yep 'illness'. One of the kids who lost on count back apparently was 'suffering from illness' yet he managed to almost win the event. Is anyone following me on this ?
Why on earth would that be mentioned in a kids tennis tournament and who did this information come from ? Was it the kid, the kid's parent or the tournament organizer or was it from a coach ? Whoever shared this 'significant' information with the local newspaper reporter, well all I can say is this, you are a fair dinkum goose mate.
The kid who was reportedly 'ill' now has the 'bragging rights' locally. Yep he is the kid who lost the junior tournament due to 'illness' and not because he wasn't good enough to win through ability. If that was my kid playing and he or she lost while under duress due to 'illness' I would be saying 'keep that to yourself, if you are up to hitting today then you will not even mention your lack of 100 per cent health'.
What I would also be saying at the end of the tournament would be that if they were good enough to just lose on a count back then the next time around I would say you are a better than average chance to go one step better. I would also be saying to them to keep things under your hat when playing tennis, especially in a local competition when it is in regards to health.
I have read all sorts of comical things over the years, none more so than my region's Champ of Champs Tournament last year where apparently a team of ladies won the doubles event after another team forfeited due to 'injury'. They missed one minor detail, it was the first match, the first set of the tournament.
Anything could have happened after that and they still had to win two more matches, which they did to take the title. Yet the write up stated that the win was due to another team forfeiting, that was journalism at it's absolute worst, it was sensationalizing an 'injury' to take away from a victory. Happens all the time.
The latest is of no real surprise though as now days it's all about other things, acting, 'injury time outs', fake cramps, gamesmanship and egotistical behavior. Did I mention bad line calling and ugly parent syndrome in junior tennis tournaments ?
If a kid plays a tennis tournament then he or she is 'well' enough to take the court and if he or she wasn't then they would be tucked up in bed, end of story. I get a cortisone three times a year in my arm just to help me play, I don't tell anyone about it except some of you who read my site. If I lose because of it then that's too bad. Sometimes I don't hit the ball as hard as I would like due to my arm not being 100 per cent so I improvise, that comes with thinking things through.
If it's your coach telling the local newspaper journo 'Jonny just lost today on a count back but he wasn't feeling the best', then can I suggest something ?
Find a coach who isn't going to look for excuses for your losses and if you are going to keep that same coach (or is that 'coach' in inverted commas) then can I also suggest something ?
Tell him or her to not make excuses for you because really, deep down he or she is really making excuses for their lack of ability in teaching you what is right from wrong on a tennis court.....