Junior Tennis players from Southeast Asia here to compete in Singapore for the upcoming S.E.A. Junior Tournament, posing with Carlos Kirmayr (left most, front row), a former Grand Prix doubles champion and previous coach of WTA legend Arantxa Sanchez Vicario. They had the privilege of receiving personal guidance from Kirmayr at a Tennis Clinic at Kallang Tennis Centre. Photo: SportSG
“Go after your dreams. Have faith.”
These short and succinct words of encouragement were Carlos Kirmayr’s parting shot to the junior tennis players who attended his coaching clinic at Kallang Tennis Centre on Tuesday.
Gathered from all over Southeast Asia to compete at the upcoming S.E.A. Junior Tournament, these players had the privilege of receiving personal guidance from Kirmayr, a former Grand Prix doubles champion and previous coach of WTA legend Arantxa Sanchez Vicario.
Unsurprisingly, they were grateful for the chance to learn, interact and even rally against him.
“I felt happy to be coached by Carlos because it was a rare opportunity, so I made the most out of the experience,” Malaysian junior player Noor Suhail bin Sallahudin shared.
Suhail’s coach Raymond Lim, who attended the session with his athletes, was pleased that his players were exposed to Kirmayr’s methods. He said: “Training with a top coach that has worked with so many top players definitely inspired them. It’s an encouragement to the players to keep on fighting and work hard.”
Kirmayr taught the young tennis players some key techniques and also how to improve their ability to focus, one of several how-tos in maintaining consistency in the sport of tennis. Photo: SportSG
Under Kirmayr’s patient and witty style of coaching, the young players were mentored on the how-tos of maintaining consistency in their serves, volleys and footwork, while keeping up the level of intensity on the court.
“Intensity is focus and being totally there to do your best, [and it involves] trying to be in position to hit every shot,” Kirmayr emphasised.
Singapore S.E.A. Junior representative Aaron Toh appreciated how Kirmayr made an effort to explain each aspect of his drills and perceived an improvement in his returns while practicing.
“It’s easy to understand his teachings as his drills are not very hard, so we can follow them during the training,” he explained.
“We learnt how to [maintain] control and it helped us to return the slices better.”
Full of praise for the clinic’s participants, Kirmayr pointed out that the level of commitment displayed on court was an indication that the youths were more than
“capable of becoming good players”.
“They take tennis seriously and want to do their best. They are happy, innocent and having fun, so it’s nice to be with them and challenge them,” Kirmayr concluded.
“I emphasized on movement, getting excited about being there, as well as intensity. They did really well.”