Canberra ACT, Australia, 23 August 2013 | Tennis Australia
Canberra’s emerging talent will be the focus for Canberra Velocity in this year’s Asia Pacific Tennis League (ATL).
National coach and Canberra Velocity manager Todd Larkham said he would be using the competition as part of Tennis ACT’s athlete development program.
“We are going blood our talented ACT junior players,” Larkham said. “This will be an invaluable experience for Dimi [Morogiannis] and Imogen [Clews], playing against former and current professional players, matches they couldn’t get in an ordinary tournament.”
Larkham said it is great for these young players to train and play alongside experienced professionals.
“It’s not every day they get to practise with players of this level and I have no doubt they will raise their level as a result.”
Australian Open junior champion Nick Kyrgios will headline Velocity’s men’s team for the event in November.
Kyrgios, now ranked an impressive 215 in the world, shocked Czech player Radek Stepanek in the first round at this years’ French Open.
The Australian Open Boys Junior title holder will play alongside AIS scholarship holder Alex Bolt, Robert Howe and Jake Eames.
“It will be great to have Nick back home competing again for Canberra Velocity,” he said. “He’s had a great year and will be a huge boost for the team.”
Alison Bai and Ashley Keir will again spearhead the Velocity women’s team alongside Tyra Calderwood, Nicole Hoynaski, and Clews.
“Alison has had an excellent year, slashing her ranking from 900 to 440, she’s in really good form,” Larkham said.
“It’s a solid team which definitely has a chance to win the league.”
He said he hoped Annabel Parolo’s (nee Ellwood) return to the doubles court will give the team the edge it lacked last year, when it finished sixth.
“Last year our doubles wasn’t strong enough, we hope Annabel will help us there and I look forward to seeing her on a court again.”